Cover photo for Lorena Downs Cohn's Obituary
Lorena Downs Cohn Profile Photo

Lorena Downs Cohn

October 12, 1937 — December 1, 2022

Lorena Downs Cohn

Our dear mother, Lorena Faye Downs Cohn, passed away on Thursday December 1st, 2022, at the age of 85. Lorena was born October 12th, 1937 in Hazel Park, Michigan to Loren and Jessie (Frost) Downs.

Lorena is survived by her husband, her five children, Lynn Embley, Laurie McMillan, Leslie (Douglas) Bell, Robert Jr. (Janet) Ganote, Jessie (Michael) Barrett; her grandchildren Sara Campa-Ferrio, Katherine Campa, Tony Campa, Tera Kluxen, Steve McMillan, Loren McMillan, Lindsey Petitta, Derek Bell, Amy Petitta, Jennifer Bell, Robert Ganote III, Michael Ganote, Rebecca Ganote, Kristin Ganote, David Ganote, Brittany Davenport, Colton Barrett and Jacob Barrett. Lorena also leaves behind 29 great grandchildren and three brothers, Robert Downs ( Bonnie), Mike Downs (Genny), and Tim Downs (Barbara) all of whom will cherish her memory and miss her dearly.

Lorena was preceded in death by her father Loren R. Downs, her mother Jessie J. Downs, grandson Sean J. Klein, granddaughter Ronni K. Klein, great-grandson Scott J. McMillan and her first husband of 36 years, Robert D. Ganote, whom she remained close with over the years. They have now all been reunited in heaven rejoicing.

Lorena was a loving woman with a spirited soul. She knew no stranger and had the knack to spark up a conversation with anyone around her. Her smile and laughter were infectious and would light up a room.

She led an exciting and adventurous life. Lorena was not the normal 1950’s poodle skirt wearing teenager. She loved to race her father’s car at the local dragstrip. In high school she preferred the Science Club over Home Ec.  and loved to listen to records and dance the twist.

Her adventurous spirit was not lost after she “settled” down and got married at the young age of 18. She and her first husband moved many times in their marriage. First moving to find work, later following Gods calling to be in the ministry. Lorena had a pivotal role in this life changing transition. God placed on her heart to lead her husband to salvation. It was that intervention, many months and conversations later, that led them on their path to serve God. In between the many miles, seminary school, churches, missionary language schools and hundreds of people, was the love for Christ and dedication to help so many others to be led to the Lord.

In her later years, she decided to return to school to pursue a degree.  During her time in college, she took advantage of every opportunity to try something new. Lorena thrived in the collegiate environment.  She joined the theater dance team, designed and crafted the theater costumes and learned to scuba dive. Although life sometimes got in the way of college, she never gave up. Her tenacity to finish finally led her to graduate with honors in History at that age of 51 from the University of Florida.

Lorena was an avid reader, reading thousands of books. Not only did she love to read, she loved to write and edit. She was respected in the writing community and sought after for her work. Through the years, she worked as an editor for different newspapers and even had several stories published. With her keen eye for detail and creative skills, she would later become a graphic designer eventually retiring from that.

She was an extraordinarily talented, beautiful and creative soul; creating paintings, poems and sculptures. She loved to garden and share her gardening secrets with whoever she was around.  Her favorite pastime would be sitting around with family and friends and sharing stories over coffee or a glass of wine. Her ability to recall and retell a story drew everyone in hanging on to her every word and leaving them wanting for more.

Her brothers were her best friends, and she was adored by them. The time she spent with them was something she always looked forward to.

Lorena leaves behind the most treasured legacy; love for her family.

A memorial Service will be held on Saturday, February 4th, 2023 at 2pm at the Morse Church, 15431 Quivira Road, Overland Park, Ks 66221

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Lorena Downs Cohn, please visit our flower store.

Past Services

Memorial Service

Saturday, February 4, 2023

Starts at 2:00 pm (Central time)

Morse Church (Quivira Road, Overland Park)


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