Joan Evelyn Arends died peacefully on Thursday, August 13th at her son and daughter-in-law's home in Rochester, MN at the age of 85. She is preceded in death by her parents, Evelyn and Lionel Sr, her husband Louis, two of her daughters, Gail Marsh and Elizabeth Bailey, and one grandson Sean Watson.
Joan will be missed dearly by her siblings, children, close friends, and all their families. Her siblings include her brother Catholic Priest Father Lionel Edward Bonneville Jr. and two sisters, Janice Jarry and Gloria Dufresne (Michael Jr. Dufresne). Her surviving children include Nancy Knox (Mitchell Collum), Gregory Arends (Dr. Angela Dispenzieri), Diane Mackrell (William), Christine Van Nice (David Wayne), and Maryann Pirkey. Joan was blessed with 21 grandchildren and 12 great grandchildren.
Joan was born October 24, 1934 in Holyoke, Massachusetts to Evelyn Jeanette (Boudreau) and Lionel Edward Sr. Bonneville. She lived in Springfield Massachusetts as a child and graduated from Springfield's Cathedral High School in 1952. In 1955 Joan graduated from Hartford Connecticut's Saint Francis Hospital School of Nursing with a Registered Nurse degree. On November 26, 1955, she married Louis Behan Arends in Springfield, Massachusetts. After marrying Lou, they moved to Chicago, and subsequently to Red Hook, New York in 1965 and then to Durham North Carolina in 1978. In March 2018 Joan moved to Rochester MN to live in her son and daughter-in-law's home until her death.
Joan worked as a Registered Nurse for many years as she raised 7 children. She was an active participant in the Holy Infant Catholic Church in Durham, North Carolina for 40 years. Some of her passions included gardening and trading in the stock market. She was an inspirational influence on the many people whose lives she touched throughout her life. Durham neighbors, Diane and Jerry Gerding rewarded Joan's inspiration by treating her as part of their family which allowed her to live by herself in her home for many more years than she otherwise could.
Two virtual memorials were held in honor of Joan, one on Saturday August 15th and another on Sunday August 16th. Joan's wishes were to be cremated and for her ashes to be placed in the grave site next to her husband's grave at Markham Memorial Gardens, Durham NC. The urn containing Joan's ashes will be buried in accordance with her wishes.
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