JoAnne Tikkala

Quilter, Sewing Teacher

JoAnne Tikkala, 78, a quilter and sewing teacher, died of cancer Aug. 23 at her Springfield home.

Mrs. Tikkala was born in Springfield, Ill., and received a bachelor's degree in 1948 from MacMurray College in Jacksonville, Ill., where she was the recipient of a number of scholarships and awards. She received a master of science degree in zoology from the University of Michigan in 1949 and began work toward her doctorate in zoology.

After working as a homemaker for the first two decades of her marriage, she moved with her family to Virginia in 1970. In 1974, she took a part-time job at Stretch & Sew Fabrics in Springfield and eventually became a sewing teacher, manager of the shop and finally quilting teacher. She retired in 1992.

She loved quilting, was a member of the Springfield chapter of Quilters Unlimited of Northern Virginia and participated in quilting symposiums across the country. She also loved traveling and bird-watching and was a capable assistant to her husband on trips he led to 13 foreign countries for American Forests, a nonprofit citizens' conservation organization.

Survivors include her husband of 55 years, Willard R. Tikkala of Springfield; five children, Richard J. Tikkala of Apache Junction, Ariz., Deborah A. Finn of Richboro, Pa., David H. Tikkala of Mason Neck, Va., Kathryn M. Kalberer of The Woodlands, Tex., and Michael S. Tikkala of Springfield; and six grandchildren.