ELDORADO — Jo Ann (Bearce) Sproul, 77, died Good Friday, April 10, 2009. Funeral services were held at 10:30 a.m. on Monday April 13, 2009 at First Baptist Church in Eldorado, Texas of which she was a member. Arrangements were by Kerbow Funeral Home.

Jo Ann was born May 14, 1931 in San Angelo, Texas to W. R. (Dick) and Winnie Bearce. Jo Ann was raised on the Bearce ranch in Schleicher County. She graduated from Eldorado High School and later attended the University of Texas at Austin and Sul Ross State University where she majored in drama. On February 14, 1949 in Alpine, Texas she married the love of her life, C.R. Sproul. Jo Ann and C.R. enjoyed over 60 years of marriage together. During that time they raised three children whom she loved deeply.

 

Later, while living in Denver and Pittsburgh she continued her interest in drama by acting in various stage productions in their local community theaters. She and her husband returned to Schleicher County in 1981 and became the third generation to manage the Bearce family ranch that her grandfather had started in 1906.

In 1989 she was able to return to her lifelong passion for drama when she led the formation of the Way Off Broadway Players in the Eldorado Civic Theater. As the founding member, in 1994 she and others headed a community wide effort to restore the Tom Ratliff Theatre which became the permanent home of the Way Off Broadway Players. Her single minded determination in this and all efforts having to do with drama was known and appreciated by all. Jo Ann acted in and directed many productions over fifteen years including “Smoke On The Mountain”. She recently come out of retirement to assist in directing “Smoke On The Mountain, Homecoming”, another successful production.

Jo Ann brought “the gift of theatre” to Eldorado. The cast and crews she assembled, coached, directed and inspired will be forever grateful for what she did. She was indeed a lady that positively changed peoples’ lives. Her husband, children, grandchildren and friends will all miss the unconditional Christian love that she gave them.

She was preceded in death by her parents and brother Bill Bearce. Survivors include her husband C.R. Sproul; daughters, Rhonda Bloschock of Atlanta, Georgia; Rene Peckham and husband, Barry Peckham of Allen, Texas; a son, Mike Sproul and wife, Cherie Sproul of Eldorado, Texas; grandchildren Christopher Bloschock of Austin, Texas; Bryan Sproul and wife Stephanie of San Angelo, Texas; Alison Dawson and husband Travis Dawson of Westbrook, Texas; Paige Payne and husband Michael of Rowlett, Texas; T.J. Rodriguez and wife Melissa of Eldorado, Texas, Ashley Paulson of Eldorado, Texas and four great grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to the Way Off Broadway Players, P.O. Box 543, Eldorado, Texas.