After happily publishing her weekly column for 26 years, we are still surprised by the things we didn’t know about JoAnne Kosey. The depth of her involvement across Riverside — education, youth sports, local history, her church, every civic group, every civic cause, volunteer and elected official — spins out a remarkable story about a woman and her hometown.
Kosey died this week after an extended illness. That illness did not stop her from penning her Landmark column until six weeks ago. In that final piece, she told readers she was heading home after more than six months of medical care. As Bob Uphues, our wonderful former editor, wrote in her obituary today, Kosey did not explicitly say she was entering hospice at home but it was implied.
At the Landmark we have always sought to publish a local paper that genuinely reflects the daily life of our communities. That is why we exist. Having JoAnne’s column run each week on the editorial page alongside the paper’s own editorials always felt right. She knew Riverside better than anyone. And not much of note across the wide spread of civic life did not make her column.
She was the glue that held the village together. And through the Landmark she had a proper platform to inform, cajole, credit, and knit together the village she so plainly loved.
No one replaces JoAnne Kosey. But as a community we build from her lessons of active involvement, positive approaches, focus on our children, love of family, respect for history with a decided forward view. Those are values she would respect and urge us to further in this village.