Because of failing health, Joan was forced to leave her beloved Betty’s Bay home in March 2008. Determined to give Betty's Bay a final farewell, she participated actively in the Woman's World Day of Prayer that year, the day before she was hospitalised, after which she moved to her daughter in Pinelands.
Joan and her husband Maurice built their Cliff Road cottage overlooking Jock's Bay in the 1970s. They had fallen in love with Betty's Bay after spending many holidays at Norwood, the family home next door. After Maurice died in 1986, Joan moved permanently to Betty's Bay and involved herself wholeheartedly in the community. She was a founder member of the Anglican Church, before the chapelry of St. Francis was established. Together with Avril Nunn, she organized communion services in their homes for any Anglicans in Betty’s Bay and this led to our now thriving Anglican parish.
Joan's garden in Cliff Road is a testament to her love of our fynbos. She served on the committee of the Botanical Society, was an active and regular participant in the monthly Hack, and never missed the Thursday “potting” group at the Harold Porter Gardens. She was also a wonderful and loving mother and grandmother to her large family. Her twelve grandchildren all shared with her the delights of Betty's Bay.
She was a strong supporter of the Anti-Electricity campaign and, after the installation of electricity, she worked hard to keep invasive lighting in check. She wrote a poem, “Don't put out the Stars in Betty's Bay”, which was published in one of the very early editions of the Buzz. She was a brilliant writer and her children's books, “Susan and the Betty's Bay Leopard”, which was loosely based on fact, and “Fynbos Friends” have been read and enjoyed by generations of Betty's Bayers.
Her bubbly sense of humour, her zest for life and her unfailing generosity will long be remembered.
[Ed: Sadly, I cannot find a place where "Susan and the Leopard" can be bought. I have found some traces, but no one sells it. This is very sad. Wouldn't it be wonderful if we could release it as a free ebook? At least!]