Joan S. Brown neé Bennett (Joanie) 79, began her eternal life on Wednesday, December 22,
2021. Born in Boston to Blanche and Edward Bennett, she grew up around uncles, aunts,
cousins, and siblings, setting the central tone of her life: family. Sunday dinners were full of
excitement and games. As a teenager she moved with her immediate family to Hull. Joan was
predeceased by brothers, Steven and Jimmy.
After high school Joanie enrolled at a comptometer training center where she learned to use the
Keypunch machine, an early computer. With her Keypunch skills, she was employed by the DS
Kennedy Company in Cohasset, where she met her future husband, Merle Brown. Joanie and
Merle settled down in Cohasset (Merle’s hometown) where they brought up their two children,
Marcy and Jeffrey.
Over the years Joanie worked many part-time jobs so she could attend the children's school
events. Once the kids were out on their own Joanie worked full time at AAA in Hingham for 15
years, continuing her education in the evenings at Northeastern University and UMass Boston–
earning her degree in Human Resources, and Benefits and Compensation. She finished her career
at the headquarters of Talbots. After retirement Joanie dedicated her time volunteering for many
community activities, including SHINE coordinator, PMC (30 years!), Cohasset Garden Club,
and the Cohasset Senior Center.
Still, family and fun was center stage in her life. She was often called the baby whisperer.
Caring and cooking for family and friends was where Joanie was the best! People still rave
about meals she prepared for them, and her collection of cookbooks was unrivaled. Beyond this,
she was adventurous– she loved to travel and try new things. When at home she loved tending to
her garden and sharing her flowers.
Joanie is survived by her loving husband of 58 years, Merle, daughter Marcy Fleming and her
husband Donald of Mantua, OH, their two children, Christian and Audrey, as well as her son
Jeffrey, his wife Laurie of Hyannis, MA and their three daughters, Elizabeth, Kathleen, and
Madeleine. How she adored them all! She also leaves many lifelong friends too numerous to
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Saturday, January 15, 2021 at 11 am at St. Anthony’s,
Cohasset. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the PMC/Dana Farber Cancer Research
center. The interment will be at the Beechwood cemetery.
Poem by grand daughter Audrey
A Gallery of Memory
Kitchen tango dances,
Making chicken soup,
having coffee ice cream
I want more– but just a scoop.
Puzzles on the table,
A can of Sprite in hand,
Laughing in the morning
Not a single moment bland.
In her favorite beach chair
She always had a book
The kids would laugh, and play, and scream
“Nannie! Nannie! Look!”
She wasn’t just for people
The dogs stayed at her feet
Because when nobody’s looking,
she’d always drop a treat.
Piles and piles of paper,
A good recipe for pie?
But not one that has coconut,
Or Joan would say “No. Bye!”
I’ll always love her garden
And her fuzzy head of hair
But no one thing could show you
All that she had to share.
It’s when we’d watch a movie
Or she’d tuck me in to sleep,
She’d put me under Nana’s quilt
Tell me not to make a peep
She’d tell me I’m her chicken
I’d giggle and deny
Because I’m really just a girl
Who’s sad to say goodbye