Early Friday morning Joanne Allard passed from this world. Joanne was an avid supporter of this blog and Fiona’s journey with hearing loss. “Aunt Joanne” as she will always be known to me, was the baby sister and best friend to my mother.
Aunt Joanne lived a life of selfless philanthropy, devoting many years of service to St. Anne’s church in Palmer, MA as well as an administrator and volunteer for the Girl Scouts of America. Always positive and a joy to talk with, Aunt Joanne was in heaven playing with her grandchildren Katelyn, Keira and Jonah.
I have many fond memories of my Aunt Joanne, but here are a few that stick out:
- Those “crazy Christmas weeks” with the Ishams and Allards down in Florida visiting my sister Cathi. Who knew a snowman could float?
- The Allard-Isham family trips renting a house at the Outer Banks for Thanksgiving. Aunt Joanne was always to be found reading a book (usually Stephen King) within sight of the ocean.
- The “bags of girls scout cookies” that always magically appeared every year growing up.
- Overcoming the tragic loss of her daughter Donna a few years back with determination and overwhelming love for her family.
- Always sticking close to my mom and helping out my parents wherever she could.
I am sad that Fiona will never know this great person. She met Aunt Joanne for her first and only time just 4 weeks ago on Thanksgiving day, pictured below. This is the last picture I have of Aunt Joanne, and the only one in existence of her with Fiona.
Joanne will live on, though, through our stories and lessons imparted to Fiona. Our thoughts are with her husband “Uncle Larry”, daughter Diana, son Richie and their families.
Rest in Peace Aunt Joanne, you will be deeply missed.