Joan passed away peacefully at Nanaimo Regional General Hospital on May 12,2013 (Mothers Day) at the age of 88. She is predeceased by her son, Jack; daughter, Ingrid Sandra; and her three younger brothers Charles, Victor and Ron. She is survived by her loving husband of 69 years, Jack Blair, her daughter, Joanne Burroughs (Keith), son James Blair (Jane), son-in-law, John Watson (Valerie) and daughter-in-law Cheryl Blair (Gord Schmidt). She will also be sadly missed by Grandchildren Patrick Watson (Deborah); Heather Watson; Krista Mitchell (Graeme); Brandi Murray (Ian) and Great-Grandchildren Jackson Blair Mitchell and Marion Murray. Joan Maud Haggith was born in Dalston, England and was the only daughter of Albert and Maud Haggith (nee Ross). She served proudly in the Women's Land Army and met Jack (a Canadian soldier) in England during WW 11. She and Jack married on May 6, 1944. Joan came to Canada in late 1944, crossing the Atlantic on a dangerous voyage in a ship with many other war brides. After a long crosscountry train ride, she arrived in Vancouver to a blaze of lights she hadn't seen in England for the preceding five years. Joan was warmly welcomed into Jack's family. Jack spent his career in the Canadian Army and Joan and their growing family moved 28 different times during his career, finally retiring in Nanaimo in 1975. Joan was always very busy and she had many interests. She was a member of the local War Brides Association, started a "Take a Break" program for young mothers, volunteered with Fairview school and worked in the library. This latter experience led to her working many years as a Library Assistant with the Vancouver Island Regional Library. She was a member of the Nanaimo Garden Club and was one of the founding members of the Nanaimo Genealogy Club, now the Nanaimo Family History Society. Joan loved music (especially the Big Band era) and dancing, enjoying her life fully. She had a great sense of humour. She and Jack lived at Nanaimo Seniors Village for the past several years and the family would like to thank the residents and staff (and Mid-Island Health workers) for all the wonderful companionship and help they provided. Joan was very grateful for the care she was given. The family would also like to thank Daphne Barley (Joan's bridesmaid), Kathy Roberts and Joan Clarke who have remained steadfast friends for all these years. There will be no service, no flowers, no celebration of life by request. Please remember her as the fun loving, gentle, kind person she was. If you wish, a donation can be made to the Parkinson Society Canada National Research Program.
This obituary was originally published in the Nanaimo Daily News and Harbour City Star (Nanaimo, BC).
Published in Nanaimo Daily News and Harbour City Star from May 23 to May 25, 2013.