Joan Marie Reyes
This week marks the first anniversary of the death of Joan Marie Reyes who passed away peacefully on Wednesday, October 20, 2010 at Helen Porter Nursing Home in Middlebury, Vermont after a five year struggle with multi-infarct dementia and a 10 month battle with esophageal cancer.
She was born February 9, 1935 in Sag Harbor, the daughter of the late John and Mildred (Hand-Richardson) Ozalis. She spent her early years in Philadelphia, Penn., attended Olney High School and was a member of the Philadelphia Youth Symphony and Children’s Choir. Her family later returned to the Harbor where she graduated from Sacred Heart Academy.
Mrs. Reyes was the organist for Most Holy Trinity Church in East Hampton for many years and was a longtime member of the Sweet Adelines Chorus. Her family noted that one of her greatest joys and gifts was music and she spent many happy hours arranging and transposing music for the Adelines and Whaler’s Barbershop Choruses throughout the 1960s.
Mrs. Reyes held various jobs throughout her life but family say her most rewarding job was that of mother, and in her later years, childcare giver for a number of families in Sag Harbor. Music, poetry and writing were among her favorite pastimes.
“She had a great wonder for all of life and loved nature, people and animals of all kinds,” said her family. “Her keen insight into the heart and soul of humanity was great and rare. She is sorely missed by all who loved her.”
Mrs. Reyes is survived by her daughter Cassandra Richard of Panton, Vt.; her son Mark Reyes of Brentwood, N.Y.; her sister Mildred Vagianos of Zephyrhills, Fla.; a granddaughter Rebecca Richard of Atlanta, Ga.; a grandson Nathan Richard of Tempe, Ariz.; her former husband Anthony Reyes of East Hampton; and many nieces and nephews. Along with her parents, she was predeceased by her sister Florence Field and nephew Howard Field.
A memorial funeral service was held Friday, August 5, 2011 at the Old Whalers’ Church in Sag Harbor. Interment followed at Most Holy Trinity Cemetery in East Hampton.