Joan Frances (Huenink) Lotz

February 1, 1938 ~ March 18, 2020 (age 82)


Joan “Jo” Frances (Huenink) Lotz

Child of God –

Joan “Jo” Frances (Huenink) Lotz, age 82, of Mechanicsburg, entered eternal life on Wednesday, March 18, 2020.  Joan was born on Tuesday, February 1, 1938, in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, to the late Elizabeth (Van Tatenhove) Huenink and Bernard Lester Huenink.  In addition to her parents, Joan is preceded in death by her two infant grandchildren: Alex and Autumn Soltys.

Those celebrating Joan's life include her three daughters: Rebecca Jo Lotz of Mechanicsburg, Ruth Pauline Lotz and her husband Joe Hudock of Harrisburg, Mary Lotz Soltys and her husband Dan of Reisterstown, MD; her grandson: Luke Soltys; her two sisters: Pauline Mather and her husband Richard of Salem, OR, and Ruth Meylink and her husband John of Burnett, WI; and several nieces, nephews and cousins, friends near and far, and her church family at Mechanicsburg Presbyterian Church.

Joan treasured her childhood with her parents and sisters, beloved beagle Zippy and duck Lucky, growing up in Cedar Grove, WI, with adventurous summers on Lake Michigan, playing volleyball, running with the moon, and playing 500 card games.  She graduated valedictorian from Cedar Grove High School. She received her bachelor's degree in Elementary Education and Christian Education, minor in Psychology, from Carroll College in Waukesha, WI, and master’s degree in Christian Education from McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago, IL. Her family was very active in their church and worship, and she developed her faith early in life.

A cherished Bible verse was Micah 6:8 "what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?" Joan lived this out by passionately doing justice by working for peace and social justice, and fighting against poverty and racism.  Joan worked to end world hunger, annually visiting legislators in Washington, D.C. to advocate for fair legislation to address hunger and poverty. She served as chairperson for CROP walks for many years and volunteered at food pantries.  Joan's compassion and kindness were unending.

Her devotion as a loving mother meant she always put the needs of her family before her own.   She loved children and all peoples.Joan exemplified walking humbly with her God through her love of service. She taught children's Sunday School, directed Vacation Bible School, hosted children in summers through the Fresh Air Fund, mentored children at an elementary school, was active with Presbyterian Women, served as a church Elder, participated in litter cleanup through Adopt-a-Highway program, and took numerous mission trips across the country, including many to Sheldon Jackson College in Sitka, Alaska.

Joan had a deep appreciation for nature. She enjoyed many hikes through trips to state and national parks, especially with the happy hikers group.  Classical and choral music brought tremendous enjoyment. Joan participated in her church's bell choir and ushered for symphonies, concerts, musicals, and choral groups. 

Joan found joy in the beauty and wonder of life. Annual vacations to Dewey Beach, DE meant rising early to view the awesome sunrises while reading her daily devotions and looking for dolphins, and she planned the timing of the trips to see the full moon rise over the ocean.  Her collection of nativities from around the world from Ten Thousand Villages were a beautiful illustration of her hope at Christmas and love for other cultures.

Her Grandson's favorite memories include her playing many games of Aggravation and 500 with him.  He will always remember one particular visit when she arrived, during a 4-day water main break, with many containers of water stating, "Water Gammy is here!"

Exemplifying the life she lived, her last great gift to us all is the donation of her body to the Pennsylvania Humanity Gifts Registry for medical teaching and research, a final selfless act of her Christian love and hope.

In lieu of flowers, contributions in celebration of Joan’s life can be made to Bread for the World, Attn: Membership Services, 425 3rd Street SW, Suite 1200, Washington, DC 20024; or

Joan's Christian faith was central to her life. Gifts to honor her life can be made to the Peace and Justice Committee of Mechanicsburg Presbyterian Church, 300 E. Simpson St, Mechanicsburg, PA 17055; or

A celebration of Joan's life will be held at a later time.  Joan’s family has entrusted her care to Buhrig Funeral Home and Crematory in Mechanicsburg, (717) 766-3421.  Read Joan’s full obituary and sign her official guest book at

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Joan Frances (Huenink) Lotz, please visit our floral store.


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