Loving Memories of Janice Bobo
February 6, 1943 – November 7, 2020
Loving, genuine, sweet, strong, stubborn, funny, tough and resilient are some of the words used to describe Janice Bobo. A life-long native of Kansas City, Ks, she had a smile and dimples that would light up a room. Despite going to separate grade schools, Tracy H. Bobo always looked for her when Dunbar North and Dunbar South came together to celebrate May Day. They ran in overlapping friend circles then graduated from Sumner High School together but didn’t make a love connection until one day in Sociology class at Kansas City Community College when Janice commented about holes in the soles of Tracy’s polished Stacey Adams shoes. Tracy would let Janice take his 1956 Chevy to run errands with her best friend, Sis, while he was still in class. They married on April 25 in 1964. The next year, Janice and Tracy welcomed their first child, Stasi. Shortly after moving into their first (and only) home, Janice exclaimed that Stasi was getting too big for her lap so he traded in his 1966 Corvette Stingray for a 1967 Chevelle Super Sport! In 1970, Tracy Jr was born.
Together, Janice and Tracy raised a family, worked hard, and played hard. They threw an annual New Year’s Eve party in their basement for years inviting friends, family and neighbors—it was the party of the year. They decked out the basement where Tracy and his father, Henry, built a bar made with bricks from Dunbar North. Janice’s father, Harold, laid the Formica Laminate on top of the bar. They painted the walls vibrant hues of green, orange, and yellow; put down shag carpeting; and laid enough linoleum flooring so Janice had plenty of room to dance. Often, she would dance to Al Green, Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes, The Spinners, The Commodores, and the Gap Band for hours. “Humpin” by the Gap Band was one of her favorites. That’s possibly why “Humpin” instantly became a favorite song to roller skate to for Stasi and Tracy, Jr. As a matter of fact, it was because of Janice, that they grew up roller skating—she often took Stasi, Tracy Jr, and the neighborhood kids, the Burgins and the Wilsons, roller skating every week!
Janice liked to travel. During many summers, the family would road trip West to Colorado, Nevada, Arizona, and New Mexico. In the photo tribute, check out the photo of the family at the Cave of the Winds—the only African American family pictured! Janice loved the heat of the dessert, the vivid landscape of the mountains and the beauty of Native-American heritage reflected in turquoise jewelry. In addition to family vacations, Janice and Tracy often traveled to annual CB conventions together—her CB handles were Fluffy Dove, Lady 371 and Queen of the Wheatfields. After both Tracy and Janice were retired, they often traveled to Chicago to visit their grandchildren. One of Janice’s favorite places to visit was New Orleans!
Back to her grandchildren. they all have fond memories of their grandmother—all fond memories regardless of whether they included some crazy way she chose to discipline them. One story Dakota likes to tell is when they were denied desert and sent to bed early (before sunset) because he forgot to flush the toilet after doing “number 2”! Tyger loved watching movies with her—they would catch some really weird and crazy movies on the SYFY channel. Her favorites were the Tremor movie and sequels. Mensa remembers the story she often told about him being a “stinky baby.” Shane remembers his grandmother as “loving” and Tony remembers her as “genuine and sweet.” One of Brittnea’s favorite memories is when, during her summer visits to KC, they would get together at night and make brownies a lo mode—Janice had a wicked sweet tooth! Brittnea’s sister, Ashlea, recalls, “she welcomed me into her life and home as a small child…and treated me as her own. I will never forget that.”
In later years, Janice enjoyed watching TV—mostly SCIFI movies, soap operas, reality TV and a variety of cooking, as well as food shows. “The Pioneer Woman”; Guy Fieri’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives (Triple D)”; and “Chopped” competitions were some of her favorite food shows. We’ve had some great food experiences because of what she learned from Triple D and lately, we started eating at different Mexican Food restaurants to see if we could find a rival to her favorite, Los Corrals in Kansas City, Mo. Janice only watched the Chief’s games occasionally because she was convinced she was a jinx, but she often wore her Chief’s gear to dialysis on “Red Fridays!” Janice delighted in watching “Young and the Restless”, the Housewives series of shows, and the reality show “Below Deck”. During dialysis, she and Tracy loved watching” “The Wendy Williams Show” and “Let’s Make a Deal” together.
Another favorite pastime was grocery shopping at Hyvee, Price Chopper and SunFresh—comparing prices and exploring the differences in food items at each store. Her frequent shopping often resulted in abundantly stocked cabinets—she was adamant about throwing out expired food like Aunt Bonnie in the GEICO “Aunt Infestation” commercial!
Despite her life’s numerous obstacles and challenges, Janice had great resolve! Luke, Tracy’s eldest son says “resilience” helps sum up his most recent memory of Janice and David, his other son, recalls her ‘contagious laughter”. Janice was accepting, strong, steadfast, courageous, and loyal. Simple things brought her joy. She loved when Shelly, her grandson Shane’s mom, cornrowed her hair and she loved DOTS candy. Janice leaves to celebrate her homegoing Tracy, her husband; daughter and son-in-law, Stasi and Mel; and son Tracy, Jr. She loved Tracy’s two sons—David and Luke, along with his family, Rita, Brianna, and Caleb. Janice embraced Tracy’s daughter, Akwila Cook, into the family. She will remain loved by her nephew, Byron Bell; grandchildren Briana, Brittnea, Tony, Dakota, Caleb, Tyger, Mensa, Shane; sister-in-law, Margo, nephew Jonah, wife Rhetta, their children; brother-in-law, Robert; a host of cousins, classmates, friends, co-workers, as well as the countless physicians, nurses, healthcare workers and medical professionals that helped support her living throughout the years. Her legacy of love and resolve will be shared with her great-grandchildren Levi, Luka, and Aycen. Janice’s mother, Prentice; father, Harold; brother, Harold, Jr; and nephew, Mark, precede her in death. We are grateful to have shared our lives with Janice.
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