Jo Ann Ellis Combs died peacefully, in her home with her family, on September 14. Her husband, Thomas Gail Combs, and son, Blinn Ellis Combs, survive her. Born to Joe Ellis, Jr. and Billie Juanita Ellis on March 25, 1952, Jo Ann grew up in Ola, where her father managed the Circle K Ranch. She nurtured an early love for books and music, becoming an accomplished amateur pianist and a voracious reader. The valedictorian of her Kaufman High School class of 1970, she graduated summa cum laude from UNT, with degrees in English and Philosophy, in 1973. She earned her J.D. from SMU Law and admission to the bar in 1977. That year also saw her marriage to Tom and the birth of her only child, Blinn. One of the first women to practice law in Kaufman, Jo Ann started her career at Morgan, Shumpert, Huff, Moseley and Co. She opened her own office with Tom on the Kaufman square in 1981, where she worked for over thirty-five years, counseling hundreds of clients through difficult decisions and end-of-life planning. A memorial will be held at 2:00p.m., September 30, at Parker-Ashworth Funeral Home in Kaufman.