Joan Patricia (Crowley) Dobias, of Greenfield, Massachusetts passed away peacefully in Salem, Massachusetts, on Tuesday, April 28, at the age of 88.
Born and raised in Melrose, Massachusetts, Joan was the second youngest of five children born to Joseph Crowley and Helen (Lundgren) Crowley. Joan graduated from Melrose High School, in 1949, then attended Boston University where she graduated, in 1953, with a Bachelor's degree in education.
Joan met the love of her life, Robert (Bob) Dobias, Jr. of Greenfield, while attending BU. They were married on July 3, 1954 and both began careers in teaching; Joan at Bernardston Elementary School in Bernardston, Massachusetts. Her teaching career was brief as she and Bob welcomed their first of five children, in July of 1955, and Joan became a wonderful full-time homemaker. The family grew while enjoying the lovely New England communities of Meriden, New Hampshire, then Granby, South Hadley and East Longmeadow, Massachusetts while enjoying summers at Rand Pond Campground in Goshen, New Hampshire.
Joan thrived in support of all her husband's and children's activities, while substitute teaching and always furthering her Catholic faith within the local parish in her community. Organizations for which Joan had special fondness included the East Longmeadow Gridiron Mothers Club and the Rosary Altar Society of Holy Trinity Church in Greenfield.
Joan and Bob returned to Greenfield and enjoyed a lengthy retirement together, reestablishing themselves in the community but also meeting new friends, in new places, as they traveled the northern states in summer and the southern states in winter. They also found plenty of time to spend with their children, and grandchildren at their homes, through the years, in Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and California. Joan and Bob were married 54 years until his passing in May 2009.
Joan leaves five loving children - Robert and his wife Sharon Dobias of Swampscott, MA, Linda Midland and her late husband Jim Midland of Gloucester, MA, Jeffrey and his wife Kathleen Dobias of Clinton Township, NJ, Debra and her husband John Boyd of Charlemont, MA and Lauri and her husband Jimmy Vaillancourt of Fitchburg, MA. Joan also leaves twelve wonderful grandchildren, Robert and Dorsey Dobias, Julia and McKeon Midland, Denis, James and Samuel Dobias, Matthew, Ian and Nathaniel Boyd and Sean and Hannah Vaillancourt, two precious great grandchildren, Robert Dobias and Koa Boyd and many beloved nieces and nephews.
In addition to her parents, husband and son-in-law, Joan was predeceased by her brothers, Colonel Edward Crowley, Robert Crowley and Joseph Crowley, and her sister Helen (Crowley) McKeon.
A private Catholic service will be held for the immediate family at Green River Cemetery in Greenfield.
The family looks forward to celebrating a Catholic Mass in honor of Joan, along with a celebration of her life, at a date to be scheduled as soon as possible this summer or early fall. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Rosary Altar Society of Holy Trinity Church, 133 Main St., Greenfield, MA 01301.
Arrangements are under the direction of Kostanski Funeral Home. Sympathy messages available at www.kostanskifuneralhome.com.
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