Dr. Sherwood “Jo-Jo” Benton Owens, Jr.

September 24, 1931 ‒ December 20, 2020

Mansfield, Ohio
Formerly of Tucson, Arizona

MANSFIELD, OHIO: Jo-Jo was born September 24, 1931 in Brownwood, Texas and passed away December 20, 2020.

Jo-Jo’s parents were Sherwood and Kate (Green) Owens and together with his sister, Nancy, the family moved to Tucson in 1942. Jo-Jo graduated in the Tucson High School class of 1949.  He then attended the University of Arizona and graduated with his Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration in 1953. He was an active member of the Sigma Chi Fraternity and excelled in varsity baseball and golf.

Jo-Jo served as a First Lieutenant in the US Air Force and was stationed in Bellefontaine, Ohio.

Jo-Jo married Mary-Ann Roads July 24, 1954 in Cincinnati, OH. Jo-Jo graduated from Baylor Dental College in 1961 and established a thriving dental practice in Tucson for 36 years. He was well known in the Tucson dental and medical community.

Jo-Jo was a member of the Tucson County Club for 44 years and played golf there almost every week.  He was also a member of the Desert Club from 1965-1978.

Jo-Jo was preceded in death by his wife Mary-Ann who died in 1982. Jo-Jo had a second marriage to Joan (“Jody”) T. Thompson from 1985-2015 and was also preceded by her death as well as two of his sons; Jackie (1) and Terry (31). He was also preceded in death by his brother-in-law, Rev. Dr. Duane Holloran. He is survived by his sister Nancy Holloran of Phoenix; his four children, Sherwood III (Marianne), Aimee Doran (Gerry), Robert, and Susie Wright (Brad); Jody’s two children, Nancy Walker (Bill) and David North, Jr. (Jill); twelve grandchildren and two great grandchildren.

Jo-Jo had a great love for Tucson and enjoyed telling stories of his life throughout the evolution of Tucson. He always supported the U of A and, for many years, attended most home football and basketball games with family and friends. Jo-Jo was kind to all he met personally and professionally.  He had a particular passion for dapper shoes, and he loved to dance, especially country swing.  Due to the coronavirus, he moved to Mansfield, OH in August 2020 where he was lovingly cared for by Susie and Brad in his final days.

A virtual Memorial Service will be held on Saturday, January 30, 2021; please contact Susie at jojowildcats31@gmail.com if you would like to attend.

Private interment will occur later at East Lawn Palms Cemetery in Tucson. Contributions in Jo-Jo’s memory may be made to the charity of your choice.

The Lexington Avenue Snyder Funeral Home is serving Jo-Jo’s family.  Online condolences to them may be made by visiting: SnyderFuneralHomes.com


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  • I spent many a day at the house in the TCC while in HS. I remember one day driving with Terry in his dads car and the song Get Back by the Beatles came on and we both started singing. But lol, I thought the license plate was Jo Jo but it was SBO 111 we had a good laugh about that. Have so many great memories, he will be missed but I hope he is watching a baseball game with Terry now. I still miss Terry.

  • Remarkable man
    Great father
    I have known Jo Jo all of my life. His enthusiasm and infectious laugh will be forever missed.

    Jim Lovett MD, FACS, MMM

  • My mother, Jody was married to JoJo for 30 years and he welcomed my brother and I and our kids as family. We always looked forward to our time with them in Tucson, San Diego, Pine Top AZ and Sedona, as well as their East Coast visits to see us. He had a warm, outgoing personality and contagious laugh and those fabulous saddle shoes. We adored him. We’ll miss him greatly but our fond memories of him live on.

  • Happy that I got to know him in the last five years of his life. So many accomplishments in his lifetime. Loved hearing all his stories and I enjoyed making him laugh. Very nice obituary.

  • I worked for Dr. Owens from 1970-1976. I was just out of high school and could not have asked for better 1st boss! We were very busy, as Dr. was one of the best dentists in Tucson. Dr. was the kindest, most patient man I had ever met. Rest in peace now, Dr. Owens. I was blessed to know you and be part of your dental family.

  • There are just a few people you meet that you genuinely look forward to seeing and enjoy the time you spend with them. I always felt that way about JoJo. Over the last 30+ years, while he was married to my mom, we played lots of golf, went to lots of ball games and had many dinners out. I’ve never seen anyone who could get along with anyone and everyone the way that Jo Jo could. He always had time for people. I’ll really miss him. He was one of my all time favorites. Rest in peace JoJo