Obituary of Joan Sullivan Gereg
Joan Sullivan Gereg, mother, grandmother, aunt, nurse, teacher and world traveler passed away at home on December 30, 2018, surrounded by her family. She was 93 years old. We will always remember `Mimi’ as unwaveringly positive, patient, and an intellectual. She was never one to pass up a New York Times crossword puzzle and was a master of trivia. She happily unwrapped the Sunday paper for 3 sections only; the book review, travel section and the crossword puzzle!
Joan was born in Chicago to Daniel and Anna Sullivan and earned a bachelor degree in nursing at St. Xavier Univ.
Through mutual friends she visited in CT, she met Peter Gereg and relocated to Danbury. She worked at Danbury Hospital as a staff nurse, supervisor and educator in the school of nursing.
Peter and Joan married in 1952, made their home in Brookfield and started a family, which grew to 6 children. Joan became a school nurse at Brookfield High School. That environment inspired her to become a teacher. So, despite having 6 young children and a full time career, she went to school at night to pursue another degree. In the end she would earn two master's degrees and a 6th year. She was bilingual, having learned Spanish and also studied Esperanto and French.
She worked many years in the Brookfield school system teaching students of various ages and abilities. Her last assignment was a transfer from the high school to the preschool program. While it was a big leap, Joan took to the new job enthusiastically and enjoyed many years working with wonderful staff and families, encouraging youngsters to reach their potential,whatever that may be.
She retired at age 75, which allowed her more time for family and travel. Bitten by the travel bug when her daughter Marcella studied abroad in France, Joan went on to see the world on various trips with her children, including Russia, China, Vietnam, Mexico, Spain, Ireland & numerous cruises to various destinations.
She was an avid reader and belonged to The Friends of the Brookfield Library. She spent many happy days reading a good book in a faraway place.
Joan enjoyed her growing family, including her 16 grandchildren. She was not only a loving grandmother but a mentor and guide as the grandchildren grew into young adults .
She was predeceased by her brother John and daughter Marcella, and is survived by her husband Peter, son Pete and wife Karen of Brookfield, son in law Geoffrey Brayton of Middlefield,and daughters Joan Ellen Gereg of Sandy Hook, Diane Lawrence and husband Jonathan of Newtown, Marita Gereg of Farmington and Patrice Fahey and husband Thomas of Newtown. She will also be greatly missed by her grandchildren Catherine and Mae Gereg, Emmett and Spencer Brayton, Ian, Kim-Li, Joanelle and Kevin Tran, Daniel, Caroline and David Lawrence , Alec and Gillian Gereg and Evelyn, Sean and Shaylyn Fahey. Joan left many friends behind, including family friend Carol Stiff and caregivers Tereza Pereira, Nery and Laura Barriga. She appreciated and loved them all.
In lieu of flowers, Joan asked that a donation be made to The Friends of Brookfield Library.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10:00 am on Friday January 4, 2019 at St. Joseph Church, 163 Whisconier Rd. in Brookfield. Visitation will be at the Brookfield Funeral Home on Thursday January 3, 2019 from 5:00pm -7:00pm. Burial in St. Francis Xavier Cemetery in New Milford will be held privately and at the convenience of the family.
Mass of Christian Burial
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