Joan Ann Greene, née Desrochers, was born June 16, 1936 in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, eldest child to Napolean and Stella Desrochers. She grew up in San Bernardino, California, attending St. Bernadine High School. After graduating high school, Joan went to Valley College for two years. With support from the family priest, Father Keane, she attended the San Diego College for Women (now the University of San Diego). Joan graduated with a degree in English in 1958. After graduating, she began a decades long teaching career. Although she taught a number of lower grades, kindergarten was her favorite.
Joan met William Archibald (Bill) Greene at a Catholic singles dance when he was a young officer in the United States Air Force. They fell in love and were married on August 13, 1960. They welcomed their first daughter, Michelle Marie, on July 9, 1961, while Bill was stationed at March Air Force Base in Riverside. Their second daughter, Laura Lynn, was born on January 3, 1965, while Bill was stationed at Schilling Air Force Base in Salina, Kansas. The family continued to move around the United States, as well as Okinawa, Japan, until Bill retired from the Air Force and they moved to San Diego in 1976.
After moving to San Diego, Joan shifted her career focus from teaching to working with non-profit organizations including Pacific Intercultural Exchange, National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Combined Health Agency Drive (CHAD), Prevent Blindness, and Melanoma Society. She also volunteered her time at a number of other local, charitable groups.
Joan remained married to Bill, the love of her life, for 48 years until his passing in August 2008. She will be joining Bill at Riverside National Cemetery, not far from where they first met. Joan is survived by her brothers Paul and Peter Desrochers, daughters Michelle Moede and Laura Greene, granddaughters McKenna, Kendall, and Kyla Moede, and grandson William Schwerin.
A mass will be held at the San Diego Mission on Friday, January 13th at 10:00 am.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the San Diego Alzheimer Association; alzsd.org .