Joan Elaine Walrath Laird, 92, died peacefully on July 13, 2021. She was a devoted wife to
Duane Laird, . She is survived by her three children, Pamela S. Laird, of California, Stephanie
J. Wong, of Oregon and Ned W. (Chip) Laird of Washington State, and four grandchildren,
Rachel J. Wong of Seattle, WA, Jessica J. Wong of Portland, OR, Emma S. Laird of Boise, ID
and Graham W. Laird of Seattle, WA as well as her brother Gary Walrath of North Kingsville,
OH. One child, Robert Laird, preceded her in death.
Joan was born on October 8, 1928 to Ned A. and Theo W. Walrath. She graduated from
North Kingsville High School and went on to earn her degree in Cosmetology. She met Duane
and after a courtship interrupted by Duane’s Air Force service, they married on Veteran’s Day,
November 11, 1950. In 1965 they moved to Greenville, PA for the Bessemer & Lake Erie
Railroad, but never lost their connection to Ohio, spending summers in a family cottage on Lake
Erie and ultimately retiring to North Kingsville-on-the-Lake.
Along with the love and care she gave to raising her children, fostering strong familial
connections, and creating a welcoming and beautiful home, Joan dedicated herself to women’s
business enterprises and the Christian faith.
With her mother, Theo, Joan operated Theo’s Beauty Shop in North Kingsville, OH for 17 years.
After moving to Greenville, she co-created a crafts business and later opened a retail shop, Pine
Needle Craft Studio.
Joan was a lifelong Presbyterian, attending the North Kingsville Presbyterian Church while
growing up, during summers, and after retiring back to Ohio. In Greenville she attended the
First Presbyterian Church. She was active in leadership, serving as a Deacon, an Elder, and on
many committees at the presbytery and national levels. She supplied missionaries, ran Bible
studies, quilting circles, turkey dinners and rummage sales and developed curriculums and
position papers. She fought to prevent male church leaders from interfering with a woman’s
right to control her own body. She believed passionately in a woman’s right to choose the
father, timing and number of children she wanted to raise.
Joan is remembered fondly by those closest to her in snapshots of her warmth and passions;
she collected driftwood and sea glass on the shores of Lake Erie, baked sour cherry pies from
scratch, and played cards with the intensity of a fierce competitor, no matter the opponent,
including her grandchildren. She was tender with her loved ones and firm in her beliefs. In
many ways she lived her entire life ahead of her time, running an organic garden and home
canning and freezing operation that insured her family had healthy, fresh food, using
self-hypnosis for birthing, and practicing yoga to stay lithe, toned and fit. Joan taught her
children and grandchildren how to sew by hand, catch fireflies in a jar, and live with purpose.
Everyone who was fortunate enough to be welcomed into her world holds a spot in their heart
reserved just for her.
Covid delayed services. All who loved her are invited to participate in a Celebration of Life at
Waters Catering Hall - 3224 E. Center, N. Kingsville, 12 noon - 3 pm EST, June 25, 2022,
luncheon buffet. In lieu of flowers please consider a contribution to Planned Parenthood or a
charity of your choice.
Share a memory at www.marcyfuneralhome.com.