Casey Jo Bishop, 28, of Garden City, Kan., formerly of Stewartville, died Wednesday, Oct. 2, 2013, following an aggressive illness with tumefactive multiple sclerosis, at Saint Marys Hospital in Rochester, where she had been a patient since Aug. 23.

She was born Sept. 19, 1985, to Joy Ann Bishop in Spencer, Iowa. When she was 4 years old, she and her mother moved to Stewartville, where she attended the Stewartville public schools and graduated in 2003. While growing up, she was an active part of Zion Lutheran Church and was involved with various youth programs, as well as teaching Sunday school. She went on to attend Winona State University in Winona, graduating in 2007 magna cum laude with a B.A. in elementary education. She moved to Garden City in 2007, where she began teaching second grade at Victor Ornelas Elementary School. She had just begun her sixth year when she was affected by the illness that took her life and the career she loved.

A reflection of her love for children was demonstrated through her years of employment with Tiger Time, Key Kids and the YMCA after school program. She also prided herself on being a big sister through the Y program and a 4-H leader. She was a member of the praise choir at New Life Community Church in Garden City, which was her current faith community. She was also passionate about reading, listening to music, watching movies, playing board games and cards. She followed the Vikings, especially No. 28, and the Minnesota Wild. She enjoyed collecting VW Bug model cars and drove a lime green Volkswagen Beetle.

Survivors include her parents, Joy and Brad Cole of Rochester; maternal grandparents, Wayne (MaryBeth) Bishop of Everly, Iowa, and Cheryl (Stan) Cox of Oregon; paternal grandparents, Irvin (Pam) Johnson of Everly, Sandy (Robert) Hoffman of Estherville, Iowa, and Lucien (Carol) Cole of Stewartville; paternal great-grandmothers, Thora Grover of Spencer, Mildred Webb of Des Moines, and Deloris Means of Spring Valley; and many beloved aunts, uncles and cousins.

She was preceded in death by her great-grandparents and numerous aunts, uncles and cousins.

The Celebration of Life was Monday, Oct. 7, at Zion Lutheran Church in Stewartville with the Revs. Byron Meline, Emily Carson and Karen Pahl officiating. A private family burial will take place at a later date at Lone Tree Cemetery in rural Everly.

Arrangements were with Griffin-Gray Funeral Home in Stewartville.