Joan Charlotte Johnson Allen Murphy of Essex Jct. VT went home to be with her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on February 22, 2021. She passed away only 3 short months after her husband, Joseph Murphy. They would have been married 50 years on February 12th.
Joan was born on Jan 14, 1937 to James G. Johnson and Charlotte B. Fairbanks in Portland, Maine. She was the eldest of five siblings.
Joan graduated from Portland High School in 1956 where she was extremely active and very well liked. She was a cheerleader for four years and head cheerleader her senior year. She was also captain of the swim team, and a member of the softball and volleyball teams. She had the lead role in her senior class play “Professor, How Could You?” She received a full scholarship from the Zonta Club to attend Mercy Hospital School of Nursing where she would eventually receive her first job as a clinical instructor. She did her pediatric affiliation at the Children’s Hospital in D.C. and psychiatric affiliation at Seton Institute in Baltimore, MD. She then went on to attend Boston University and Boston College for additional nursing studies.
She married her high school sweetheart, Walter Allen, in 1961. They had two children together, Michael and Lori. Walter passed away of a brain aneurysm in 1970. Joan then married Joseph J. Murphy, Jr. in 1971 and moved to Castile, NY to attend Elohim Bible College. They had a daughter, Rachel, in 1973. They graduated in 1974 and moved to VT where they would minister together for the next 35 years at Grace Bible Church, a little country church outside of Stowe. She wore many hats during her years there; Sunday school teacher, luncheon organizer, landscaper, janitor, and decorator. She was also hired by Olive & Tom Watson, founder of IBM, to care for their chalet at Spruce Peak for 25 years.
In 2009 she retired with her husband to an in-law apartment with their daughter, son in-law and family in Essex Jct., VT. They continued to minister to everyone they met there. They led and participated in multiple Bible studies with friends and neighbors. Joan had such a passion for baking and gardening and still took care of her family’s needs, especially the laundry! She loved the ocean and thought there was no better place to vacation than the state of Maine. She enjoyed planning early for the holidays and loved to see the snow come. She was an avid snowshoer, getting out 53 times last winter!
Joan is survived by her two children: Michael Allen and wife Karen of West Allis, WI; Rachel Murphy Seavers and husband Bob of Essex Jct, VT; three siblings: Heidi DiPhilippo of West Falmouth, ME; Pamela Branfuhr of Goodyear, AZ; Jeffrey Johnson of Portland, ME; 8 grandchildren: Tyler Guzman, Trevor Allen, Stephanie Goldade, Chelsea Layne, Mahaliah Duncan, Sarah Taylor, Amanda Seavers, Andrew Seavers; and 7 great grandchildren: T.J. Guzman, Camilia Guzman, Victoria Guzman, Brooklyn Allen, Canaan Allen, Oliver Allen, and Aiden Goldade.
Also predeceased were her parents James and Charlotte Johnson, husband Joseph Murphy, brother James F. Johnson, and daughter Lori Allen Taylor.
A celebration of her life will be held at a later time when all of her family and friends can attend safely. The family invites you to share your memories and condolences by visiting www.awrfh.com.