Joanne Garey Menz, aged 91, passed peacefully on July 1, 2021.
Born in 1930 in Plattsburgh, New York, she was the daughter of the late Frances (Leahy) and Jack Garey of Lima, New York. She married Edwin (Tooie) Menz in 1951. They moved to Mahwah, NJ in 1965. She moved to Pompton Plains, NJ in 2018.
Growing up in the small town of Lima, NY she enjoyed being a drum majorette for the Lima Drum and Bugle Corps and working at the family-run Garey’s Ice Cream Parlor. She received a scholarship to attend high school at Nazareth Academy in Rochester, NY, and graduated in 1948.
After getting married, Joanne and Ed lived in Rochester, NY where Joanne worked as a secretary for Eastman Kodak until her first daughter was born. While raising three daughters, she attended nursing school at William Paterson and earned her Bachelors degree in 1975. She worked as a registered nurse at Valley Hospital and later started graduate studies, earning a Masters degree in Nursing from New York University in 1980, where she was inducted into the Sigma Theta Tau National Honor Society of Nursing. She continued at Valley Hospital for over 30 years working in various nursing roles including critical care supervisor and diabetic nurse educator.
Joanne eventually retired to spend more time with her 2 grandsons ~ they loved eating her famous chocolate chip ‘grandma’s cookies’. As a former high school basketball player, she enjoyed cheering them on at their basketball games.
Joanne was a devout Catholic and served as a Eucharistic Minister at Immaculate Conception Church and enjoyed becoming more active in the Immaculate Conception Adult Parishioner’s group as a retiree. She traveled to her ancestral home of Ireland with the group.
Following her lifelong passion of helping others, she was active in retirement as a volunteer with hospice, and as a former heart surgery patient, enjoyed volunteering with the Valley Cardiac Surgery program, helping new patients learn about the process and easing their anxiety.
Her husband passed away in 2012. Surviving are her daughters and sons-in-law, Mary Ellen (Bob) Dronitsky of Phoenixville, PA and Cambridge, MA; Patty Menz of Oakland, NJ; and Jeanie Menz (Mike Naylor) of Raritan, NJ, her grandsons, Garrett and Beckett Naylor, and her brother, Dick Garey of Lima, NY.
Visitation will be held on Sunday from 4 - 7 PM at Van Emburgh-Sneider-Pernice Funeral Home, 109 Darlington Ave, Ramsey. A funeral mass will be celebrated on Monday, July 12, 2021 at 10 AM at Immaculate Conception RC Church in Mahwah.
Memorial donations can be made to the Cedar Crest Scholars' Fund, which provides college scholarships to the high school students who work in the community where Joanne lived.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Joanne Garey Menz, please visit our floral store.
Cedar Crest Scholars' Fund
1 Cedar Crest Drive, Pompton Plains NJ 07444