Obit: Joan Wingate |

Obit: Joan Wingate

Joan was born in Woodbury, N.J. on May 17, 1951. She lived in New Jersey and graduated from college and was a Home Economics teacher at a high school in Vineland, N.J. During Easter break in the spring of 1978 Joan came to Snowmass to visit some friends. She immediately went back to Vineland and resigned from her teaching position that she had for 7 years, packed up her truck and moved to Snowmass the summer of 1978.

During the next 40 years Joan became a matriarch of Snowmass. She performed many jobs. She was a baker, a frequently hired alterations expert and seamstress, a banquet manager, a caterer and a customer service agent at SkyWest Airlines at the Aspen airport.

She performed all of these tasks with dedication and a willingness to be the best she could be at the job. She always had a very positive attitude and a smile on her face no matter how difficult the day may have been.

Joan had an adventurous side. She loved river rafting and traveling. Those who accompanied her on such adventures recall she was known to have had a coffee thermos on one hip and a bottle of Tequila on the other–one time in an inflated green alligator being the first to descend the rapids with said libations intact. She would always make you laugh with the tales of her adventures. A six week sojourn with her favorite travel buddy is remembered most fondly for there not being one word or expression of discontent even in tight quarters as they both reveled in the journey and the friendship foremost through the Seychelles Islands and Greece.

Joan passed away on July 16 with a very dear friend (and enthusiastic travel partner!) by her side after a very long and courageous fight to conquer her private battle with cancer.

Joan can be remembered for many things but I think we all can agree that she will be remembered for her dry sense of humor — with a sprinkle of sarcasm!

Listen for her favorite humming tune of optimism at the celebration her of life to be held on August 5 at 6 p.m. at the Tree House at the Base Village in Snowmass. If you have pictures to share with everyone at the slideshow, please email to

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