Photo of Joanne Staropoli
Joanne Ferrara Staropoli

Obituary of Joanne Ferrara Staropoli

March 13, 2024

Joanne Ferrara Staropoli passed away at home in Philadelphia on March 13, 2024, after living with kidney cancer for nearly nineteen years.

Joanne was a loving wife, mother, nonna and friend who radiated love and kindness in all she did. She enjoyed spending time with her family and dear friends more than anything, especially with her grandchildren in recent years. Joanne and her husband Pat were together for fifty-three years, forty-eight of which they were married. They were lifelong partners and best friends. Her daughters, Ashley and Alex, are grateful for all of the milestones in their lives Joanne was able to celebrate with them. She was the heart of her family.

Joanne believed strongly in fighting for women’s rights and equality for all people. She was a dedicated employee of Planned Parenthood of Hudson-Peconic for twenty years, working her way from center assistant to regional director. She went back to school to pursue her masters in social work and was a hospice social worker at Calvary Hospital Hospice for thirteen years. Her work and values live on not only in the many patients and families she helped but also in her children and grandchildren who will try their best to make the world a better place just as she did.

Those who were lucky enough to know Joanne were touched by the unique way she cared for all of those she loved. She had a way of making everyone she interacted with feel special, from those most intimate relationships in her life to those she only met once or twice. Joanne was steadfast, confident and brave. She challenged those around her to think deeply and to question themselves and others. Her calming presence, her hugs, the way she always listened, her cooking and her love of life will be missed. While her loss is an unimaginable one, her love and light will live on in all of those she loved forever.

Joanne is survived by her husband, Pat; her daughters, Ashley and Alex; her sons-in-law, Mike and Andrew; her grandchildren, Sophie, Mason, Penelope and Marlow; and her sisters, Patricia Guglielmo and Florence Ferrara, and their families.

Her family would like to extend its gratitude to all of those who provided care to her over the years, in particular Dr. David M. Nanus and his team at the New York Presbyterian Hospital - Weill Cornell Medicine Healthcare Systems Cancer Program.

Details on a memorial service celebrating Joanne’s life will follow. At Joanne’s request, please make any donations in her memory to Planned Parenthood Southeastern Pennsylvania at*61d52l*_ga*OTQwODQxOTEuMTcxMDUyMjYyNQ..*_gid*MTM3NDc5NzE1OS4xNzEwNTIyNjI1*_gac*RUFJYUlRb2JDaE1JOGJpZXBlSDJoQU1WemxCSEFSMnY4UW5mRUFBWUFpQUFFZ0tGUV9EX0J3RS4xNzEwNTIyNjMx 
or to New York Presbyterian Hospital - Weill Cornell Medicine Healthcare Systems Cancer Program by writing a check payable to: “Weill Cornell Medical College – GU Oncology Research” in care of Dr. David Nanus, 1305 York Avenue, 7th Floor, New York, NY 10021.

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Our sincere sympathy to Pat and family. She fought for years and was loved by all who knew her.She will be remembered as a very special person.

Posted by: Flo and Joe Cestone - Tequesta, Florida - Friend March 17, 2024

My JoJo, you are my best friend. I am heart broken. You were always loving, caring, and considerate and my calming voice. I treasure your friendship and you always acknowledging my birthday with a card and a call and your words of support and encouragement. Even in times when you were not feeling well you were always concerned and there for us all. Your hospitality and comfort in your home were second to none. I remember whenever coming to visit there was always a table of food prepared. My best and favorite trip is when we came to Tuscany to visit you both that unbelievable spread out behind the farmhouse under the treless lined top to bottom with flowers over looking the rolling hills. It was like heaven. You are my angel. They say that an angel must earn their wings. When that day comes all of us would like you to come visit. But remember you will always be in our hearts. I love you, your Lou Lou

Posted by: Lou Meli - New Rochelle, New York - Friend March 18, 2024

Every minute spent with Joanne will forever be a beautiful everlasting memory. For me, she was that shining star friend, that if you lucky enough in life to stumble upon.. She will always remain a big part of my heart. Every moment in time with her was the best memory.. Love you JoJo till my last days????

Posted by: Peg Meli - New Rochelle, New york - Friend March 16, 2024

I feel very fortunate to have you as a dear friend for all these years. I can still hear your voice say “Nanny if you need help, we will be there, are you OK? “Joe was one of the most selfless people I ever knew. With all her health issues I can still picture her power washing my patio last spring. It was never about her or her horrible disease she always forged ahead and was there for all of us. Joanne was a great listener and a gift to everyone she knew .I will always love you forever Joanne!

Posted by: Nancy Mulkerin - Fsirfield, CT - Friend March 18, 2024

Joanne has been one of the greatest gifts life has ever bestowed on me. My life will be changed without her but her love and spirit will be forever present. Until we meet again my friend…Love and Peace My JoJo????

Posted by: Cathy Rodriquez - , - Friend March 18, 2024

Seldom do we come across such a special person. One that makes everyone feel loved and appreciated. This is the extraordinary feeling that Joanne projected on all who knew her. It is said that we can count our true friends on one hand. Without a doubt, Joanne would be counted on many hands. Thanks for sharing your love of music with me, Carlos Rodriquez

Posted by: Carlos Rodriquez - Tequesta, Florida - Friend March 18, 2024

Seldom do individuals, such as Joanne, pass through our lives. Joanne was one of the most compassionate people that I have ever met. It is said that we can count our true friends on one hand. That being so true, I’m sure Joanne would be counted as a true friend on the hands of many. Thank you Joanne for being a true friend, Carlos…(thanks for sharing your love of music with all of us)

Posted by: Carlos Rodriquez - Tequesta, Florida - Friend March 20, 2024
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