On Wednesday, March 24th, at 89 years old, Joan M. Chouinard met her Saviour face-to-face. We can only imagine her joyous reunion with her beloved husband, the late Charles Chouinard, her daughter, Taylor Gilday, her grandson, Noah Gilday, and her dear baby son! Joan loved singing and dancing, so we’re quite sure it was a welcoming, jubilant scene full of praise and love. The memorial service and celebration of her life was held in the church sanctuary at 11am on Monday, March 29.
Born in Amesbury, Joan attended “grammar school,” when she wasn’t skipping to go ice skating. She graduated from Amesbury High School in 1949; her children always got a kick out of her hilarious Yearbook entitled the” ‘49er’s Pow-Wow;” the hair-do’s, they thought, were priceless! In her early 20’s she attended many dances in the Amesbury area, many times dolled-up in a brand-new dress belonging to her sister, Dawn…without Dawn knowing! Her love of fashion, clothes, and dressing up never wavered. Joan really was a fashion plate. She loved to have fun, and she looked good doing it.
She always enjoyed shopping for clothes, trying on everything in her favorite store. She loved the
beach and getting a little tanned. Family parties for every occasion, big or small meant the world to her. And boy could she laugh! She could always find the humor in things, laughing ’til she cried. She liked playing games, crossword puzzles, and hanging out with her grandchildren—all 15 of them! As you’re reading this, and noticing her middle initial, ‘M,’ You might think it stands for, “Mamoo,” as she was so affectionately known, but, no, “Mamoo” is the name given to her by her grandchildren, who were the light of her life. There’s nothing she enjoyed more than hanging out with her grandkids, singing at the top of her lungs, while the they played piano and guitar. They were always up for learning a new song that they knew Mamoo would love.
Although she lived with leukemia for the last four-and-a-half years, she lived independently. As we’d repeatedly broach the subject of her moving in with one of us, she’d say she didn’t want to live with anyone; she liked visiting, but she wanted her own space. Besides, she’d say, she didn’t want anyone to be glad when she finally died, because they were sick of her! She did enjoy spending a lot of time visiting her family in Maine and loved visiting Ocean Park in recent summers, there.
Joan had always wanted to visit Scotland. In 2017, she finally made the trip! Travelling with her daughters, she saw all the sites she’d dreamed of and more.
She said she felt such a connection there, like she’d finally come home. She’s pictured now, in heaven, with the same happy, peaceful look she had as she stood on the “bonnie, bonnie, banks of Loch Lomond, “ at home with her Saviour, Jesus Christ, safe and secure.
Joan was the daughter of the late Beatrice (Gourley) and Douglas McKinnon. Joan is survived by four daughters France Coombs and her husband Jack of Beverly, Renee Linde and her husband Harry of Sterling, VA, Courtney Noble of Sanford, ME, and Holly Chouinard of Beverly; one kid brother, Jim McKinnon and his wife Sonia of Newburyport; fourteen grandchildren Ivy, Elias, and Rosemary Gilday, Griffin, Hayden, and Devon Coombs, Charleigh Linde-Day and her wife Hannah, Talia, Anya, and Benjamin Linde, Uriah, Silas, Tess, and Harlow Noble; her son-in-law John Gilday, a sister-in-law, Blanche Hincman, and many nieces and nephews. Joan was predeceased by her daughter Taylor Gilday and her grandson Noah Gilday. She was also the sister of the late Jack McKinnon, Vivian Harlow, and Dawn Saunders.
Written by the family of Joan Chouinard