March 28, 1929 - January 19, 2017
Service Date: January 22, 2017
Funeral Home Ottawa - Westboro Chapel
Kabayama, Joan Eleanor
Passed away peacefully on January 19, 2017. She will be dearly missed by her children (Maki, Noreen, Makoto, Allison, Kichiji) and grandchildren (Michiomi, Allison, Kimiko, Takashi, Taiyo, Ilona, Talon, Cassandra). Predeceased by her parents Albert and Muriel and sister Mary Ruth. National swim team member in 1948 & 1949. Joan became a teacher, mentor, and friend to many. She completed her Masters of Education at McGill and taught generations of students ranging from her one-room schoolhouse in Oka, Quebec to Nepean High School, Ottawa-providing guidance counselling, coaching swim and water polo teams. Joan was a social justice activist- marched with Martin Luther King Jr (1963), ran as an NDP candidate for MP (1972 & 1974) and was a School Board Trustee (1972-1985). A Revolutionary in diplomats’ gloves, Joan was a lifelong advocate for disadvantaged people including seniors, women and native causes. Joan helped to found her beloved Unitarian House where she happily resided for 20 years. Joan adopted Japan as her second home in 1984, taught at Sophia University, Tokyo and made many lifelong friends in Japan. Joan was a long-time supporter of the Arts. Dedicated to her faith and service communities – First Unitarian Congregation of Ottawa, Tokyo Unitarian Fellowship, Rotary International, PEK (International Teacher’s Organization), Canada-Japan Trade Council, International Association for Religious Freedom. Author of Joan’s window on Japan and social column writer -the Daily Yomiuri. Visitation will be at Tubman Funeral Homes, 403 Richmond Road in Ottawa on Friday, April 21 from 1-3 p.m. and 6-8 p.m. A service to celebrate Joan’s life will be held on Saturday, April 22 at 10 a.m. at First Unitarian Congregation of Ottawa, 30 Cleary Avenue with reception to follow. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be directed to Amnesty International.