Floral 14

Joan Ellen Irving

December 16, 2021


Joan Ellen Irving, a lifelong Needham resident peacefully passed away on Dec 16, 2021. She was 61 years old.

Joan attended special needs classes at Mitchell School, Newman Junior High School, and graduated from Needham High School in 1982.  A volunteer for the Needham Public Library for many years, Joan loved books and research.

Baptized and confirmed at St. Joseph’s in Needham, Joan was a long time participant in their special needs CCD program.  A very spiritual person, Joan was always interested in learning about practices of many different faiths.

In 2016 Joan was hospitalized with a very serious case of pneumonia.  After 16 days in ICU and several weeks in the hospital, Joan arrived at Briarwood rehab center.  They helped her relearn to walk, eat, and live.  Arlene, Chery, and staff - we are so thankful. 

The Charles River Center has always been a big part of Joan’s life.  As a teenager, Joan and “The Thorpe Road Gang" held backyard carnivals to raise money for programs at the Center.  Joan has participated in many of their programs  and she spent the last 5 years of her life as a resident.  The family would like to express their deepest appreciation to the staff at the Charles River Resident Living program, the Charles River Day Habilitation program, and especially every member of the South Street staff for their exemplary care of Joan.  They truly became her  other family and we are so grateful for their caring and kindness. 

Joan’s confidence, ability to work a room and read her audience was a source of both admiration and entertainment for her family.   Her love of music, singing and dancing were legendary among those who knew her. Motown was her groove and she was proud of her skill at moonwalking.   She passed peacefully with her siblings surrounding her while  listening to her favorite song "We Are The World."  Her family is so grateful for the gift that was Joan in their lives 

Joan was the daughter of the late Kenneth and Barbara (Walker) Irving and is survived by her sisters and brother Paulette L. Campbell and her husband Ross of E. Falmouth, Richard Irving and his wife Tamar of Dedham and Judy Lambert and her husband David of Needham as well as nieces and nephews, Jackie and Kyle Lambert, K.J. Irving and Amy Cohan and Katie Campbell. 

A private service will be held on Wed Dec 22 at 10:30 and can be viewed at harborview.live. Joan will be laid to rest with her parents at the Mass National Cemetery in Bourne. 

In lieu of flowers a donation, in memory of Joan to The Charles River Center, Paul D. Merritt Building 59 East Militia Heights Dr, Needham, MA 02492 would be appreciated. 

The family knows that Joan brought many smiles to people.  They ask that you please share a funny encounter or warm memory of Joan at www.eatonfuneralhomes.com   Your thoughts, stories and memories will be treasured.  


To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Joan Ellen Irving, please visit our floral store.

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Charles River Center
59 E. Militia Heights Drive, Needham MA 02494
Web: http://charlesrivercenter.org/donate

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