Obituary: Joan Hope McGuern

Joan Hope McGuern
Joan Hope McGuern
Provided Photo

July 18, 1933 – August 19, 2022

Joanie (Mummsy) McGuern, 89, left this life at her home in Rifle on August 19, 2022. She was born July 18, 1933 in St. Louis, MO, the second of four daughters to Robert and Samantha (Pells) Bennett. At the age of three Joanie moved west by train with her family to Los Angeles, where her father began his career in the movie industry. They lived on a ranchette in Sepulveda, where Joanie raised chickens, and rode horses. At age six she convinced her parents to let her have a library card, and would walk by herself to check out books on her own. At nine, she stood out in a field of 300 high school students and won an art scholarship. After graduating from Hollywood High, Joanie became the equestrian counselor for campers at Idyllwild in the San Jacinto mountains of California. Skiing was a passion, and it was at Squaw Valley racing she met Frank McGuern. Seven years and four children later, following their divorce, she supported her children in the San Fernando valley, painting. She moved with her second husband, Dick Kwiatkowski and children to a 17 acre property up Cattle Creek in 1971. She stayed in Glenwood following the 2nd marital dissolution, working at Bill Bullocks, taking a break to visit the Alps. Married a third and final time to Merle Hauschel, she moved to New Mexico, bought several properties and traveled to New Zealand, before returning single to Glenwood, her true love. She worked in a book store, and continued her adventures, traveling solo to Alaska, living in Key West a year, digging crystals in Arkansas, and hiking in Garfield and Pitkin county.
She was the bravest, most independent, imaginative and determined woman most of us will ever know. As time reduced her independence, bent her and slowed her, she kept her indomitable spirit and positivity, relying on the assistance of generous friends.
Joanie is survived by her children Debbie (Bob Van Iderstine)Tucker of Grand Junction, CO, Michael McGuern of Show Low, AZ, Laura McGuern of Boynton Beach, FL, and Brenda (Michael) Shearer of Los Angeles, CA; as well as 6 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren. She is preceded in death by her parents, and two sisters.
Per Joanie’s wishes, cremation has taken place and she will be scattered in her beloved mountains. A celebration of life will take place at a later date.
If a man does not keep pace with his companions perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music he hears, however measured or far away.
~ Thoreau

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