Joanne Elkins Ranzer, 74, passed away on Tuesday, April 26th, 2022 at her home in Southbury, Connecticut, after a lengthy battle with cancer. Joanne was surrounded by her adoring family that loved her for her warmth and wisdom and her magnetic and empathetic personality that drew people to her.
Joanne is survived by David Michael Ranzer, the love of her life and devoted husband of 51 years; her loving daughters Cori (and Jeffrey) Boudin and Karen (and Dennis) Geelan; and Joanne’s four precious grandchildren Robert, Charlotte, Sara and Sawyer. Her husband David often said, “they are the dividends of life.”
Joanne was born in Far Rockaway, New York on September 3rd, 1947, to Robert and Betty Elkins. She spent her childhood on Long Island, graduating from Lawrence High School in 1965. She attended SUNY Cortland and then New York University, where she earned her undergraduate degree in 1969. In that same year she met David Ranzer, whom she married the following year in New York City.
With an innate sense of social justice and standing up for those in need, Joanne earned her Masters in Social Work from Adelphi University on Long Island. Joanne was very proud of her career as a social worker. She dedicated herself to serving people in need, who benefitted from her wisdom and huge heart. Following her efforts working at community centers in Inwood, New York, she established her own psychotherapy practice dedicated to serving families, including spearheading parenting groups and improving the literacy of children in need. Before retiring, she served as a medical social worker at the Berkshire Medical Center in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.
After her daughters graduated from college, Joanne and David moved to Williamstown, Massachusetts, where she relished the county life and loved hiking with her dogs by her side. As a spiritual woman, she helped establish a new mountainside synagogue, Congregation Beth-Israel, where she served as its president.
To complement their life in the Berkshires, Joanne and David spent more than a dozen winters in Delray Beach, Florida. From her childhood on Long Island, Joanne always loved the beach. She found wintering on the Florida coast both soothing and invigorating, reuniting with some of her dearest, lifelong friends. For the last decade, Joanne and David established their primary residence at Heritage Village in Southbury, Connecticut, where they found a warm and welcoming community of friends.
Joanne’s compassion and love of family and friends fueled her life on this earth. Her star still shines within all of us who were lucky enough to have her in our lives. To honor Joanne’s life-long love of animals, those who wish to, please consider donating in her name to the Companion Pet Rescue https://cprdogs.com.
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