In Memoriam: Joanne deMariano


We were saddened to learn of Joanne’s death in spring 2014. She was a long-time Bearnstow friend, a Bearnstow camper as a child and whose children, Andrea and Dan, were also past campers at Bearnstow.

To mark Joanne’s passing, her children, Andrea and Dan Pringle, held a memorial celebration at Bearnstow on Saturday, August 23, 2014. According to her wishes, Joanne’s ashes were scattered on the Bearn­stow camp grounds. Rememrances were shared and a buffet was served.

Photo by Matthew Lu, 2007
Photos courtesy of Andrea Pringle unless otherwise noted.

Photo by Matthew Lu, 2007

Photo by Matthew Lu, 2007

Joanne with the 2013 Lynn Needle workshop at Bearnstow
Photo: © Arthur Fink
I first became aware of Joanne deMariano in 1947 when my father stayed at the Sundial Inn in Mount Vernon. He reported an enchanting four-year-old hostess in the Inn’s dining room. Joanne truly was an enchanting hostess throughout her whole life. As she grew older her mother found that she could not devote sufficient time to her in the summer. The answer was sleep-away camp. After an unsuccessful summer at a nearby camp, they tried Bearnstow, which was a fit indeedan association that would last a lifetime.

Joanne graduated from camping to being a real help at the Inn, but her interests sent her else­where. I next remember her when she appeared at the Hall door one rainy afternoon while Frances was teaching. She was by that time 18 years old, apprenticing at the Theatre at Monmouth where she had been assigned to apprise organizations of the Gilbert and Sullivan musicals that Monmouth was producing. Every inch the lady she had prom­ised to be, she was gracious and charming and knew her spiel. Of course, we welcomed her with open arms even though we knew all about her theatre and could probably recite her spiel almost as well as she.

Next I remember her daughter, Andrea. I was at the country store and Joanne's mother was there. “This is Joanne's daughter, Andrea.” She pointed to a two-year-old toddler dressed with ruffles and pantaloons and with hair all in curls.

In 1981, after some hard times with an unsuccessful inn venture, Bearnstow provided Joanne a sanctuary, and she and Danny and Andrea joined us.

Joanne also joined our adult dance classes. She had become a sales lady for underwear (1986) and one evening presented her sales pitch in the Hall for the adult class, modeling some of her wares. (And I remember Nicolas Bloom flashing his undies as he exited.)

After that, Joanne really grew up and buckled down to a training in the health industry. Her aunt helped her get a real home in Portland, but she always stayed in touch. She officiated at our memorial for Frances Reid in 1995.

It was our privilege to host a memorial gathering for her in 2014. Her ashes are in “The Place” between cabins 2 and 3 along with Frances Reid, Piper and Millie Gregory, and Suzanne Dalton Jones.
Reg/Ruth Grauert

Email Tributes

-------- Forwarded Message --------
Subject: Re: Remembering Joanne deMariano
Date: Mon, 18 Aug 2014 09:41:04 -0400
From: Robin Gilmore
To: Jim @ bearnstow

Hi Jim,
I'm sorry to hear of Joanne's passing. I was there in 2007 when she cooked delicious meals and laughed that boisterous laugh. My condolences to Joanne's family and the Bearnstow family.

-------- Forwarded Message --------
Subject: Re: Remembering Joanne deMariano
Date: Mon, 18 Aug 2014 14:37:12 -0400
From: Linda Combs
To: Jim @ bearnstow

Ruth and Jim,
Lynn and I send our deepest condolences regarding the loss of Joanne. We will be thinking of you all this Saturday. Hope you are both well and enjoying the summer.
Warmest regards, 
Linda Combs

-------- Forwarded Message --------
Subject: I am sad to hear the passing of Joanne deMariano.....Re: Remembering Joanne deMariano
Date: Tue, 19 Aug 2014 06:40:32 -0400
From: Elizabeth Enfield
To: Jim @ bearnstow

My son was a close friend of Joanne's son Daniel when they were in school together in Mt. Vernon Eelementary. I spoke to her on the phone awhile ago where she was living in Portland, Maine. She was a good friend of Camp Bearnstow.  My condolences on her passing.... 
will be in touch...
Elizabeth Enfield
Gloucester, Mass.

-------- Forwarded Message --------
Re: Sad news -- Joanne deMariano
Matthew Lu, Aug 14, 2014, Taipei,Taiwan

I am so so sorry to hear about that, she gave me the most interesting memories back in 2007 at the camp, I still make one of my favorite dishes that she had taught me when we were there. Send my best condolences to her son for me . . . . Seeing this photo brought back so many memories, that was a great relaxing week with all the people in the camp.