Joan Estelle Anderson Bowen died peacefully on April 2nd, 2017. Joan was born in 1932 in Bridgeport, Connecticut. She was the only child of Alfred and Esther Anderson. She grew up in Stratford, Connecticut and graduated from Stratford High School. She also attended Bates College in Maine and graduated from Wheaton College in Massachusetts in 1954. She returned to Connecticut where she worked as a library assistant at the University of Bridgeport where she met her husband. She married Larry Bowen in 1955 and in 1958, Joan and Larry moved to Daytona Beach, Florida with their young daughter, Pamela. Joan also gave birth to her sons, Scott and Craig, while living in Daytona.
In 1964, Joan and Larry moved to DeLand, Florida because they wanted to raise their children in a small town family-oriented community. Joan stayed home with the children until 1966 when she became an elementary school librarian at Louise M. McInnis Elementary school, then known as DeLeon Springs Elementary School. In 1969, she received her master’s degree in education from Stetson University. Later she became the librarian at Woodward Avenue Elementary School in DeLand. After 30 years of service, she retired and then spent the next ten years volunteering in that school library because she loved the work so much. She had a passion for sharing reading with her young students and for assisting her peers in their roles as teachers.
Joan loved to read and voraciously read as many books as she could. She especially enjoyed reading good mysteries and spent the latter years of her life taking part in year-long book reading challenges.She also loved traveling and toured Europe and Great Britain three times during her life. She also enjoyed visiting Alaska, Canada, and the Caribbean Islands. One of her favorite trips was taken with Larry and their two dogs in their motor home crossing the United States from Florida to Washington via a southern route and returning home via a northern route through Wyoming and North Dakota.She loved seeing new places and experiencing different areas of the world.
Joan was a member of Delta Kappa Gamma, a society that promotes professional and personal growth in women educators and excellence in education. She was also a member of St. Barnabas Episcopal Church in DeLand Florida where she was active in bible studies and guild activities.
Joan was predeceased by her husband, Larry, her youngest son, Craig and her dogs. She is survived by her daughter, Pamela, her son, Scott, and her two daughter-in-laws, Vicky Bowen and Tricia Metz. She has been loved dearly by those who have known her and will remain in their hearts forever. She has been a strength and an inspiration to us all.
A memorial service will be held at St. Barnabas Episcopal Church, 319 W Wisconsin Ave, DeLand, FL 32720 on Friday May 19th at 10am.
In lieu of flowers donations may be made to any of the following St. Barnabas Episcopal Church in DeLand, ASPCA, or St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.