Cover photo for Joan Spence's Obituary
1925 Joan 2020

Joan Spence

July 4, 1925 — November 23, 2020


Joan Spence, wife, sister (“Bossy”), mother, volunteer, artist and a true lady of her time. Her quick wit, laugh, and her “game for anything” (almost) attitude will be dearly missed. She passed away peacefully in her 96th year on Monday, November 23, 2020 at The Pines Long Term Care Home in Bracebridge, Ontario.  Predeceased by her beloved husband C. Ellwood (Lou) Spence in 2014 after 63 years of marriage; brother Tom Bradfield; and best friend and cousin Deb King. Daughter of the late John Ross Bradfield and Laura Kathleen Stone. Survived by brother Robert R. (Bob) Bradfield (Helen) and sister-in-law Sheila (Gundy) Bradfield.  Mother of Laura Wittmer (Karl), Jack (Cathy Shiner), and Norie (John McCrea).  Grandmother of Josie (Jarryd Lee), William (Nichole LaPierre), Melanie, Patricia (David MacKinnon) and Johnny (Erin Poole).  Step-Grandmother of Jennifer, Tom (Kadri) & Dianne (Mike Marsh) McCrea; and Michal & Tamar Stein. Great-Grandmother of Emma, Cooper & Riley; Ella & Ruby; Rylan, Fallon & Brydyn; Logan & Daphne.  Also missed by daughter in law Anne Simmonds.

Joan was born on July 4th 1925 and spent her early years growing up in the then burgeoning mining town of Noranda, PQ. Her family moved to Toronto in 1938 when her father became corporate secretary of Noranda Mines. Joan was educated at Branksome Hall in Toronto and the Boston School of Fashion Design.  During the war she volunteered as a Junior Famerette in the Niagara region. After the war she married a handsome man from Fort William and raised her family in Toronto. Summers were split between Loon Lake in Thunder Bay and Muskoka where the family also spent every weekend the remainder of the year.  After Lou’s retirement the couple moved to live full time in Muskoka. She enjoyed many fun years of watching the sun set on the islands of Lake Muskoka. She was a keen Muskoka Brown Bagger and even sold some paintings!  She loved the warmth and camaraderie of this diverse group of artists.

Due to the current Covid-19 circumstances, a memorial service will be held when we are able to meet and celebrate freely.

Memorial donations can be made to Knox Presbyterian Church, PO Box 283, Port Carling, ON P0B 1J0 (705) 765-3797

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Joan Spence, please visit our flower store.


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