Shrewsbury/Lancaster - Joann M. (Dowd) Brosnan, died unexpectedly Sunday March 3, 2019 in Clinton Hospital after being stricken ill at her daughter's home. When asked her age, Joann would answer with conviction…’39 and holdin’.
Born on April 23, 1941 in Worcester she was a daughter of the late Walter J. and Helen E. (Doheny) Dowd. Raised in Worcester she was a graduate from Saint Peter’s High School with the class of 1959. She earned her Associates degree from Quinsigamond Community College in 1989 and her Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Anna Maria College in 1991. Lastly, she achieved her early childhood certificate from Middlesex Community College in 1996.
Professionally, Joann worked at Denholm's, Riley-Stoker Co. in Worcester, New England Power Co. in Westborough and local area social work practices and early childhood programs before retiring.
In earlier years Joann was active in young adult clubs and was a member of the ProDeo club, ChiRHO club. Social by nature she could make quick friends with anyone and enjoyed dancing. Talented with the needle, thread, yarn, and fabric she enjoyed membership and the friendships that ensued from Mother Town Quilters in Lancaster, Northborough Senior Center Quilt Group, ‘Sew What’ at The Beaman Library in West Boylston, and much of her work she shared as gifts for others including the homeless at Hotel Grace at St. John’s Church in Worcester. With a love for travel and people she looked forward to her senior outings and enjoyed games, the beach, skiing, snowshoeing, ice skating and she loved watching college football and basketball. She was a member national association of Social Workers and the Scarlet Women of Northborough, Red Hat Society.
A resident of Shrewsbury for over 48 years and was a member of Saint Mary’s Parish where she served as Eucharistic minister, brownie/ girl scout leader and a CCD teacher and volunteered in the Shrewsbury Public Schools. A lover of all things Irish she treasured her trip with Nancy to Ireland where she relished in the music, dance, people and culture of which she was boastfully proud. Joann loved being a grandmother more than anything in the world to her seven grandsons. She was the much loved Gramma to Brosnan and Deignan. with whom she lived. She loved a fun game of checkers, coloring and a good book to read them at night with a kiss that would last till eternity. Joann will be remembered for her kind, fun-loving nature and willingness to help everyone…and for her contagious laugh.
She leaves her children, Ellen M. Brosnan of Westfield, Timothy J. Brosnan (Rita) of Memphis, TN and Nancy M. Malek (Joseph) of Lancaster; her grandsons, Garrett, Patrick, Connor, Anthony, Aaron, Brosnan and Deignan; her great-grandsons, Caleb and Keegan; her siblings, John F. Dowd (Maryann), Mary E. Morawski (Joseph), Bernard L. Dowd, all of Worcester, Betty A. Pierce (Harry) of Shrewsbury; also survived by 14 nieces & nephews; several great nieces & nephews; 3 Godsons. Her much beloved dog, Charlie. She is predeceased by her former husband, John F. Brosnan.
Family and friends will honor and remember Joann's life by gathering for a calling hour from 10 - 11 a.m. on Monday, March 11th in Saint Mary’s Church, 640 Main Street, Shrewsbury with a Funeral Mass to be celebrated at 11 a.m. Should you be inclined, honor Joann by wearing her favorite color purple. Burial is private.
In lieu of flowers memorials in Joann’s name may be made to Quilts of Valor Foundation, P.O Box 191 Winterset, IA 50273 qovf.org or St John's Food for the Poor, 20 Temple Street, Worcester, MA 01604 stjohnsworcester.org