Cover photo for Joan Margaret Dodsworth Ware's Obituary
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1927 Joan 2024

Joan Margaret Dodsworth Ware

September 4, 1927 — May 17, 2024

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Joan Margaret Dodsworth Ware. Joan passed away peacefully, surrounded by family, on May 17, 2024, in Kanata, at the age of 96.


Joan loved her family fiercely. Beloved mother to her sons David, Peter, and John; mother-in-law to Joanne (nee Kirby), Suzanne (nee Boch) and Jennifer Morin (the three Graces, as Joan referred to them); Grandma to Edward (Virginia nee Carney), William, Sarah, Katie, Fiona, John (Shantelle Oldford), Michael and Patrick; and Great Grandma to Liliana.


Joan was born in Gateshead-on-Tyne, England, to John, Sergeant Major with the Royal Dublin Fusiliers, and Annie (nee Collins). One of eight children, Joan was raised by her father and stepmother, Ivy (nee Quenet). At the outset of World War II, at the age of 12, Joan and her younger brother Alan were evacuated under the Children’s Overseas Reception Board scheme. Joan arrived at Pier 21 in Halifax and settled with her sister Kathleen ‘Babe’ Cole and her family in Kingston, Ontario where she attended Notre Dame High School.


After the war, Joan returned to England where she graduated from Skerry’s College in Newcastle, before successfully sitting the Civil Service Examination.  She worked on the newly established National Health Service as Personal Assistant to the Controller of the Ministry of National Insurance (now DSS).  In 1953, the year of the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II, Joan left the job she enjoyed choosing to marry Johnny after which they emigrated to Canada.


Johnny and Joan had initially decided to emigrate to South Rhodesia (Zimbabwe) where Johnny, who served as a pilot with the Royal Air Force during World War II, had learned to fly.  Instead, they returned to Canada, following Joan’s lifelong friend Maureen O’Byrne to Toronto. Johnny worked for Orenda engines until the ill-fated Avro Arrow project was cancelled. 


Johnny and Joan eventually settled in Kanata with their three boys. There were many happy times in those early days on Leacock Drive.  Joan knew how to throw a good party and loved spending time with close friends, the Cameron, Black, Myhill and Mawby families, amongst many others. 


After volunteering for a year, Joan was hired as Kanata’s first librarian in 1968 when registration was 294 adults and 271 children.  To quote the Kanata Standard announcement, "Joan brings enthusiasm and a proven interest to the job".   An understatement, if ever there was one, as she loved it!  While juggling full time work and raising three rambunctious boys, she graduated from Algonquin College with a Library Technologist Diploma.   During her tenure as Chief Librarian, this small library in a room in the Beaverbrook Community Centre grew into the Kanata Public Library with two locations, the Beaverbrook Branch and Hazeldean Branch which was an early adopter of an automated circulation program and networked Interlibrary Loans.


Following the tragic death of her husband Johnny, Joan married Dennis (Denny) Ware and had many happy times with him living on Tiffany Crescent and visiting his cottage on Black Donald Lake. After Denny’s death, Joan moved to Stonecroft Terrace, where she developed close friendships with her wonderful neighbours.

Joan lived life to the fullest. She loved her family and celebrated their accomplishments proudly. She was an avid reader, a family historian, and an incredible storyteller. Joan will be remembered for zipping around Kanata in her red convertible, family dinners at the Rideau Club, and for always saying yes to dessert. Her spirit and zest for life will be missed by all of those who had the privilege to love her. 


Joan lived independently in her home until she was 94 with the support of, family, friends, neighbors, Dr. Ceapchi and Wendy Cook.  Also, heartfelt thanks go out to all of those that cared for Joan during the last two years:  the staff at Ruddy-Shenkman Hospice, Foxview Retirement Community, Timberwalk Retirement Community, Dr. Chapman, and her supportive friend Karen Stafford.


There will be a celebration of life (Joan always loved a good party!) at Tubman Funeral Home (3440 Richmond Road) on Sunday, June 23, 2024, from 2-5 p.m. with a short ceremony at 3 p.m. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations to the Ruddy-Shenkman Hospice or the charity of your choice would be appreciated.  

Service Schedule

Upcoming Services

Memorial Reception

Sunday, June 23, 2024

2:00 - 5:00 pm (Eastern time)

Tubman Funeral Homes - Garden Chapel Nepean

3440 Richmond Road, Nepean, ON K2H 8H7

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Words of Remembrance

Sunday, June 23, 2024

3:00 - 4:00 pm (Eastern time)

Tubman Funeral Homes - Garden Chapel Nepean

3440 Richmond Road, Nepean, ON K2H 8H7

Get Directions

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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