NEWBURY - Joan Irons of Newbury, passed away on November 7, 2021 after a courageous four-year battle with Progressive Supranuclear Palsy (PSP). Joan was born in Springfield, MA the eldest daughter of the late Dr. Michell E. Kfoury and Mary C. (Coughlin) Kfoury. She was married for 42 years to Clifford G. Irons of Newbury. She graduated from St. Chretienne’s Academy (Salem) in 1960 and UMass, Amherst in 1964 and earned a Master’s degree in education from Boston University in 1974.
At age 20 Joan went directly from college to teaching English at Salem, MA high school where she educated a generation of Salem students until 1988. A tireless, gifted, compassionate teacher, she challenged her students but was always available to them for guidance and inspiration. She then joined her husband at Brooks School, (North Andover) becoming the Director of Publications until 1992. She returned to teaching as a professor of English at North Shore Community College until her retirement in 2007.
In addition to her husband, Joan is survived by her three sisters and their respective husbands; Judith A. Urbanczyk (Stephen L.) of Shady Side, MD and Washington, DC; Mary E. Kfoury (Christoffer A. Graae) and Ruth A. Kfoury (Richard A. Dana) both of Edgewater, MD. Her brother, Lt. Mitchell A. Kfoury, USAF, predeceased her in 1986. She also is survived by her brother’s wife, Suzanne F. Kfoury of Austin, TX, 15 nieces and nephews, and 17 great nieces and nephews. Known to them as AJ, she visited them often; instilling a love of art and reading; taught them games, especially poker; watched and cheered at their sports activities; and took them on mystery rides.
Joan was also an excellent bridge player, and enjoyed tennis and golf. She also loved to travel, and with her loving husband, nourished that with many trips to Europe, also Africa, China, Tibet and Hawaii. Joan was a woman of strong intellect, fierce loyalty and beauty. Her sense of humor, quick wit, and her famous story telling will be missed by all who knew her.
ARRANGEMENTS: Relatives and friends are invited to visiting hours at O’Donnell Cremations – Funerals – Celebrations, 167 Maple St., (rte 62) Danvers, Monday, Nov. 15th from 6 to 8 P.M. Her Funeral Service will be held at the Immaculate Conception Church, Green St., Newburyport, Tuesday, Nov. 16th at 11 A.M. Burial is private. The family wishes to thank the wonderful caregivers who cared for Joan during the past three years, and also Constellation Hospice. Donations may be sent in her memory to: www.curepsp.org. To share a memory or offer a condolence, please visit www.odonnellfuneralservice.com
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