Johnnie Lou (Smajstrla) Yowell

Johnnie Lou (Smajstrla) Yowell

Celebration of a Requiem Mass for Johnnie Lou (Smajstrla) Yowell, 92, of Killeen will be at 11 a.m. Monday at St. Paul Chong Hasang Catholic Church in Harker Heights. Burial will follow at Killeen City Cemetery.

Mrs. Yowell died May 31.

She was born Dec. 27, 1928, in Elk to Mary (Piter) Smajstrla.

In 1946, Mrs. Yowell graduated from La Vega High School, where she earned a typing scholarship to Mary Hardin-Baylor College. However, her life took a different direction and after graduation, she worked in the family cotton gin and general store. In 1951, she married her lifelong friend and neighbor, Bill Yowell. They made their home in Killeen and opened Gross-Yowell Lumber Company.

Two daughters, Debbie and Sherrie, soon joined them. She was active in all aspects of their lives, from sewing costumes for dance recitals to making posters for school elections and halter breaking calves for 4H and FFA.

Mrs. Yowell and Mr. Yowell enjoyed traveling with friends and had fond memories of the many cattle shows and Polled Hereford events that they attended over the years. Especially dear to them were their numerous RV adventures with Don and Jean Gautier and other RV friends.

She was a prolific letter writer and if you were fortunate enough to receive a letter from her, then rest assured, you were now up to date on the latest family news. Over the years, she would faithfully send her many friends and relatives cards on their birthdays or anniversaries.

As long as her health permitted, she was a member of the St. Joseph Altar Society and remained a great supporter of the St. Joseph Catholic School (now St. Joseph Academy), where her daughters and now great-granddaughters attend elementary school. She was also a member of the Killeen chapter of the Texas A&M Mothers Club for many years and the Texas Polled Hereford Association.

Mrs. Yowell was preceded in death by her husband of 66 years, Bill; parents John and Mary Smajstrla; three brothers and seven sisters.

She is survived by daughters, Debbie Yowell Farley (Bill) of Killeen and Sherrie Yowell Anderson of Austin; grandsons, Matthew Yowell (Sarah) of Killeen, Brant Farley (Patti) of Gatesville and Tanner Farley of Gatesville; great-granddaughters Addison and Aubree Yowell and great-grandson Chance Farley.

A special thank you is extended to her caregivers of the last five years, Cinderella McCombs, Erma Allen and Sharon Fuqua, who treated Mom with such love and kindness.

Donations may be made to St Joseph Academy in Killeen.

Visitation is at 6 p.m. Sunday and rosary at 7 p.m. at St. Paul Chong Hasang Catholic Church.

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