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Joan Marie Carnie Cole

Date of Death: August 12, 2020

Date of Birth: August 19, 1928


Joan Marie Carnie Cole, age 91, passed away on Wednesday, August 12 at Clover Manor in Auburn, Maine following a long period of immobility and shorter duration of dementia.
Joan was born in Newark, New Jersey on August 19, 1928 to Joseph and Minnie Carnie. She grew up in Belleville and graduated from its high school in 1945. She was proud to have been honestly raised in modest conditions among “tough Italians” (her words borne of respect) in northern, working-class New Jersey during an era of depression and then war.
Joan earned a Bachelors degree from Cortland (NY) State Teachers College and a Masters degree from Newark State Teachers College. She worked 33 years as a physical education teacher in the school systems of Port Jervis, Minisink, Warwick, and Greenwood Lake – all communities in southern New York.
She first crossed paths with her future husband, Ray, during her time teaching in Port Jervis – his hometown and where they were both participating in a thespian society. They wed in Belleville on June 27, 1954 and lived for 47 years in Warwick raising a family and staying involved in a wide range of community and church affairs. Like all mothers, she was a fierce advocate for her two daughters and one son, while typically turning a blind eye toward their misconduct.
In the last 19 years of life, Joan was a year-round Mainer disavowing all sports teams south of Boston. Through conversion she became a loyal fan of the Patriots and soon recognized Mr. Tom Brady as the GOAT. Her outward, gregarious nature also led to many new, wonderful friends in Bethel and she was truly appreciative of their presence in her life.
Joan loved music and first played the cello, and then piano and organ for many, many years. The houses in Warwick and Bethel were joyous when Joan was on the ivories. And sometimes she would sing. Her appreciation for music included the retention of an old, upright piano at the family lakeside camp in Belgrade, Maine – over the repeated objections of her husband who futilely tried to dispose of the weighty, discordant clunker in the interests of sub-structure preservation.
Joan’s life was full throughout the years. Beyond her love for teaching, music, church and community she also traveled – whenever, wherever (several continents) and often spontaneously. Modes of transit included car, rail, boat, ship, plane, bicycle, foot and even thumb – once hitchhiking a ride with two female college friends sitting on a couch strapped to the top of a truck heading for New York City – indeed, times have changed.
We remember Joan as a generous individual who liked to laugh, sing and keep in touch with friends. She also held tenaciously to certain views toward friends and family, whether or not obsolete.
Joan was predeceased by her parents, husband Ray, and eldest sister Carol who passed in youth. She is survived by oldest daughter Susan Samble (husband Paul) of Springfield, Massachusetts, son Scott (wife Michele) of Bethel, Maine, youngest daughter Janice of Bristol, Connecticut, two grandchildren, two great grandchildren, sister Anna Lewis of Lansdale, Pennsylvania, niece Carol Mattes of Telford, Pennsylvania, nephew David Lewis of Perkiomenville, Pennsylvania and their respective families. There will be no visiting hours or service. A private celebration will be held in the future.

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