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Julie Lynne (Niessen) Daugherty, fiercely devoted mother, wife, daughter and friend, was called home on November 10, 2022 at just 53 years young, while surrounded by the loving support of her family.

We often referred to her as “Jewels”, and she was a gem of a woman, always donning a bright color or pattern that unintentionally lit up her sky-blue eyes.  Simply stunning in looks, even more so in personality, Julie was multi-faceted beyond measure.  As a child, she learned to hunt deer, ducks and geese with her dad and could wax a duck quicker and better than you knew possible.  Despite her love of hunting with her dad, Jewels was a passionate lover and protector of animals, especially her buddy Ruger.  Throughout her life, she named birds, squirrels, and even the dragonflies that seemed to be drawn to her this past summer.  Thanks to a passion instilled by her mom, Julie was an amazing, 5-star-quality cook.  Her French onion soup and chicken with risotto are of legendary status!  Always an energetic athlete, Jewels grew up downhill skiing, playing ringette and was a stand-out tennis player throughout high school and college.  In her 30’s and 40’s, Julie pivoted her ringette skills into hockey, playing several years with the Thunderbirds women’s hockey team.  No doubt, however, her most treasured days on the ice were coaching her boys, JP and Danny.  Julie’s happiest place on earth was most certainly the family cabin on Lake Wapogasset in Amery, WI where all these traditions and passions began.

Jewels was not just a strong and competitive stunner with a good shot, she was also insanely intelligent.  Prior to starting her most prized position as mom, Julie served as a Project Manager on the corrosion team investigating the shuttle disaster, landing her name in the Library of Congress.  Her ability to remember, comprehend, and explain complicated medical conditions and terminology continually left doctors speechless.  If she wasn’t leaning new recipes or techniques on the Food Channel, Julie was surely watching a football or hockey game.  It didn’t matter if it was college or professional, she would recite ridiculous statistics of virtually every player that would put Vegas bookies to shame.

Julie was diagnosed 11 years ago with stage 4 colon cancer and has since endured 184 rounds of chemo, radiation, and countless surgeries.  Jewels, you outlasted medical expectations by more than 9 years.  What a gift; the strength, determination, and courage you’ve shown us all.

Born June 28, 1969 to devoted parents, Beverly and Richard Niessen, Julie grew up in White Bear Lake where she graduated in 1987.  She received degrees in both Psychology and Philosophy from Gustavus Adolphus College, where she met her husband of 30 years, John Daugherty.  Their marriage was blessed by the birth of JP in 1996 and later Danny in 1998.

Julie is survived by her beloved sons JP and Danny; husband John; her constant cuddle companion Ruger; parents Dick and Beverly Niessen; brothers Rick and Brian; many nieces and nephews; other relatives and friends.

Preceded in death by her grandparents LaVonne (Bonnie) Johnson Kohls and William G. Kohls, Florence Johnson Niessen and Henry J. Niessen.

In lieu of flowers, Julie would love your support of Read Dogs MN, an organization focused on improving children’s reading and communication skills by employing a powerful method; reading to a dog.

Funeral service for Julie Daugherty will be held at 12:00 Noon on Saturday, December 3, 2022 at St. Andrew Lutheran Church in Eden Prairie.  Visitation will be held 10:00 AM until the time of service.

View the Livestream at:

The Peterson Chapel, Buffalo assisted the family with funeral arrangements.

“I have fought the good fight, finished the race, and have kept the faith.” 2 Timothy 4:7

3 Guestbook Entries

  1. Pam Ramsey

    I consider it such a privilege and blessing to have known you and called you friend. Your bravery, courage and perseverance the past 11 years is beyond amazing! Your legacy will live on in your boys, family and friends.

  2. Amie

    Dear John, boys and family, It is with a heavy heart we wish you peace and happy memories. I have thought of you all so often over the years imaging the strength you must find daily to carry this difficult burden through life. I hope you had and have more happy days than not and find peace as you carry on knowing you all still have her love with you always.
    Amie and Gary Haugo

  3. Connie Priesz

    From R.E.A.D dogs MN we extend our deepest sympathy to your family. Thank you for your generous donations to our organization in behalf of Julie. Your help will be used to help teams provide assistance for kids to gain literacy skills when they read to an animal. We appreciate your generosity very much.


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