Obituary : Joan Ostanek
Joan Ostanek, 90, died peacefully on Friday, February 13, at her daughter Barbara's home on Martha's Vineyard.
Joan was born on July 19, 1918 in Utica, the daughter of Stephen and Anna Pawelec Kedziewski. She was proud that she entered kindergarten speaking only Polish, and quickly, was helping others with their lessons in English. She attended Sauquoit Valley High School, and after graduation, moved to New York City where she completed cosmetology school.
Joan met the love of her life, Frank Ostanek, roller-skating at Rockefeller Center and they were married in June 1944. They moved to New Hartford in 1953 and raised their family there. Joan worked for 22 years at Sears Roebuck Co. in the credit department and catalog sales. Her sweet and pervasive voice on the phone earned her the nickname "sugar lips."
She was a member of St. John the Evangelist Church and enjoyed playing in the church golf league for many years. She was an avid card player, and especially liked winning at pinochle and bridge.
Joan was devoted to her daughters and granddaughters and we feel blessed to have had such a wonderful, loving mother. She loved being part of school activities, birthday parties and traveling with her family. She said she would "go" as long as she was able and she meant it. In 2008, she enjoyed a cruise, a wedding in Mexico, and a hot air balloon ride for her 90th birthday. It is possible that she holds a world record for miles of travel in her transport chair.
Joan is survived by her daughters Drs. Barbara (Bruce) Stelle of Vineyard Haven, and Alice (Girard) Purdy of Skaneateles; her beloved granddaughters Blair Stelle of New York City, Blake Stelle and Allison Purdy; a sister, Evelyn Pasciak-Hennessy; a brother Emil (Angela) Novak and several nieces, nephews and cousins. She was predeceased by her husband, Frank; a daughter, Janet Ostanek of Watertown; and a sister, Irene Evans.
The funeral will be Tuesday at 9:30 am from the Dimbleby, Friedel, Williams & Edmunds Funeral Home, 13 Oxford Rd. in New Hartford, Conn., and at 10 am at St. John the Evangelist Church. Interment will be in Mt. Olivet Cemetery. Calling hours will be Monday from 4 to 7 pm.
In lieu of flowers, friends may consider a donation to the Janet Ostanek Scholarship Fund at Watertown High School, 1335 Washington St., Watertown, NY 13601.