Joan S. Thurber

IRVINGTON—Joan Senior Thurber, 91, passed peacefully on July 16, 2020, at Rappahannock Westminster-Canterbury in Irvington.

Joan was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., and graduated with honors from Manual Training HS, majoring in mathematics and excelling at swimming and figure skating.

Joan was always proud that her ancestors fought in the American Revolution and that her father, Harvey Senior, was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross as a pilot during World War I.

Joan was accepted at Pratt Institute for Fine Arts, but deferred to help her husband, Ed, attend New York University. She subsequently had three children, Barbara, David and Robert, and put her art work on temporary hold.

In 1967, Joan and Ed moved to Garden City, Long Island, and Joan went back to school to train in the new field of computer programming. She was the only woman in her class and went on to have a 20-plus year career as a systems engineer for Chase Manhattan Bank.

In 1989, Joan and Ed retired to the Northern Neck where they opened the Renaissance Shop, refurbishing furniture. Ed was the master woodworker, but Joan ran the business and all that that entails. It was then she became affiliated with the Rappahannock Art League and resumed her art career. Her medium was watercolor and she won many accolades for her unique and free flowing style.

In the last 10 years of her life, she slowly succumbed to Alzheimers but was well taken care of by her husband and the staff at RWC.

Joan was a quiet person—shy, even—but still waters run deep. She loved nature, so enjoyed the water on Long Cove and reveled in never-ending sunsets. She passed this love of beauty onto her three children, seven grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. Everyone who met her was impressed by her natural grace and lovely demeanor.

Her family will privately gather to scatter her ashes. Godspeed, Joan.