This is a printer-friendly version of an article from

12/20/2021 11:00 PM

Old Saybrook

Joan Austin Van Epps, 90, of Old Saybrook, beloved wife of the late Donald Van Epps, passed away on Dec. 16 at Gladeview Health Care Center surrounded by her loving family. She was born March 17, 1931, in Middletown, the daughter of Albert and Hazel Viola Austin.

Joan was the owner and president of Ragged Rock Marina for the past 50 years, a business that was created and developed through a vision that her late husband Donald and she realized together, through hard work, dedication, determination, love, and commitment to each other.

She was known and admired for her innovative and creative decorations for every holiday. She was an avid dog lover especially to her beloved golden retriever Beauty Lou.

Joan so enjoyed traveling with her sister Bette to her home at York Beach Maine, at Nubble Light. She loved entertaining at her home at Saybrook Point. Many holiday poolside cookouts were enjoyed by family and friends. She so loved cooking Sunday night dinners for her entire family.

After the untimely death of her husband, her faith in God and love of her family gave her the strength to live her life to the fullest. Her family truly felt that she was an enhancement and a gift in their lives. Most of all remembered, was the love for her three daughters, which was immeasurable.

Joan was predeceased by her husband Donald of 33 years; her cherished daughter, Bonnie Lee Champion; two beloved grandchildren, Skye Reece Van Epps and Sundai Lynn Van Epps; and three sisters, Elizabeth Schultz, Louise Dibble, and Claire Thompson.

She is survived by her two daughters, Donna and Debbie Van Epps and son-in-law John Champion, all of Old Saybrook. She is also survived by grandchildren Donald Champion and his wife Renay Bartlett Champion, Angel Champion, Amber Champion, Shannon Van Epps Meehan adn her husband Kevin, and Christopher O’Neal, as well as five great-grandchildren, Summer Starr Pichardo, Allie Champion, Autumn Fisher, Ivy Fisher, and Shay Fisher and also niece Marion Austin.

The family wishes to extend a heartfelt thanks to the nurses, doctors, and staff of The Gladeview Health Care Center for the kindness and compassion that they showed Joan during her stay.

A private funeral service will be held at First Church of Christ in Saybrook. For her online obituary, please visit www.swanfuneralhomeoldsaybrook.