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Joan's Story

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Joan A. Clark, 90, of Traverse City, passed away Sunday, June 4, 2017. Joan was born on May 8, 1927 in Buffalo, New York, to the late Joseph and Helen (Hart) Willitzer.
She married the late Arthur J. Clark on June 18, 1949 in Junction, Ohio. They were married for over 63 years before his death in 2013.
Joan was a lifelong member of St. Francis, where she volunteered in the food pantry, assembling Thanksgiving food baskets and assisting Sister Katherine.
Joan and Art moved to Traverse City in 1965, where they owned and operated the Reef Motel and made many new friends.
She and her husband, Art, were former residents of Arizona, and while living in Florida Joan and Art worked at Disney World for a number of years. They returned to their home town of Traverse City in 2002.
The Clark's enjoyed traveling and visited 41 states delivering motor homes to various dealerships.
Joan was a "doting, caring, gentle soul who could make you smile with her kind words and actions, and she was always accepting people into her heart."
She is survived by her children, William C. (April) Clark, of Coldwater, Patti (Harry) Day, of Traverse City, and Linda (Steven) Slanina, of Crown Point, Indiana; nine grandchildren, Christopher (Kristi) Clark, Jason (Dana) Clark, Tony (Ruby) Day, Matthew (Jessica) Day, Danny (Marlaina) Day, Kelli Day, John Slanina, Rick Slanina and Kimberly Slanina; six great-grandchildren, Allyson Clark, Megan Clark, Bailey Clark, Hannah Clark, Marilyn Day and Cooper Slanina; one brother, Jack Willitzer; brother-in-law, Adelbert (Marilyn) Clark; hundreds of nieces and nephews; and "special adopted" children, Vern and Donna Korb and Kathy Walters.
In addition to her parents, she was also preceded in death by a grandson, Mark Day; and eight brothers and sisters, Gerry Font, Geneva Waldron, Helene Justus, Robert Willitzer, Donald Willitzer, Richard Willitzer, Eileen Mack and Wayne Willitzer.
Friends may call at the Reynolds-Jonkhoff Funeral Home on Thursday, June 15, 2017, from 6 to 8 p.m., with a rosary recitation at 7 p.m. In celebration of Joan's life, a funeral Mass will be offered at St. Francis Catholic Church on Friday, June 16, 2017, at 11 a.m. The Rev. Kenneth Stachnik will preside along with Deacon Rene Hoenscheid. Cremation has taken place. Burial will follow at Grand Traverse Memorial Gardens.
In honor of Joan, contributions may be made to the St. Francis Church Building Fund.
Kindly share your memories with the family on their online guestbook at www.reynolds-jonkhoff.com.
Arrangements were made by the Reynolds-Jonkhoff Funeral Home and Cremation Services.
Published on June 11, 2017
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