NEWTON Barbara Jane Punch, the oldest daughter of Barbara Baker Johnson and Arthur Britain Johnson, was born July, 10, 1937, and passed away Sunday, Jan. 12, 2020, in Saline, Mich. Jane attended Fred T. Foard High School in Newton, where she met and fell in love with James Darrell Punch. On Aug. 8, 1959, a few months after Jane graduated from Meredith College in Raleigh, and J.D. from N.C. State University, the two were married at the New Jerusalem Church. Jane taught elementary school in St. Paul, Minn., while J.D. pursued a PhD at the University of Minnesota; she taught third-grade in Richmond, Va., while her children were young. In 1973, the family moved to Kalamazoo, Mich., where they resided for nearly 30 years, making frequent trips to see family in North Carolina. Jane was preceded in death by her husband of 49 years, who passed away in March 2009; brother, Hugh Arthur Johnson; brother and sister-in-law, Loy and Betty Jo Punch; sister-in-law, Judy Punch; and brothers-in-law, Gene Punch, Ted Punch, and I.A. Travis. She is survived by her children, Jeffrey (Margaret) Punch of Ann Arbor, Gina Punch Donlin of Oak Park, Ill.; and grandchildren, Rebecca (Matthew McHale) Punch, Allison Punch, Jeremy Punch, Kathryn Donlin, Abigail Donlin and Charles Donlin. She is also survived by her sister, Alis Johnson Irwin; sisters-in-law, Kathy Johnson, Becky Punch, Betty Punch, Betty Jean Punch; and brother-in-law, Darvin (Arlene) Punch; along with many dear nieces, nephews, loving cousins, and treasured friends. Family and friends were drawn to Jane's warmth, kindness, and sincerity, which never wavered throughout her lifetime. She enjoyed Scrabble, crosswords, and anything with caramel; she couldn't resist peeking at presents, collected teddy bear mugs and ornaments, and was never too busy to listen. Jane was a prolific quilter who loved piecing fabrics to create personalized designs including "dream quilts" and baby blankets. She relished the role of Grandma Jane, hosting her grandchildren and many other beloved children, for tea parties, art classes, and nature walks. Visitation will be held Friday, Jan. 17, from 5 to 7 p.m., at Willis Reynolds Funeral Home, 56 Northwest Blvd. in Newton. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m., Saturday, Jan. 18, at New Jerusalem Church, 2120 Startown Rd. in Newton, with the Rev. Randall Cauble officiating. A luncheon at the church will follow. We invite you to sign the guest book and leave a memory at Willis Reynolds Funeral Home and Crematory in Newton is assisting the family.

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