Joan Marie Connell (Zurmuehlen) died after an extended battle with cancer. She was born to the late Fred and Mildred Zurmuehlen on July 24, 1945 in Evansville, IN, but she grew up in Cleveland, OH. Joan attended Baldwin Wallace College and Fairview Park Hospital where she earned her degree as a Registered Nurse.
Joan married her husband on September 10, 1983 after first meeting him during a job interview at Ohio State University. She later claimed that she knew during the interview that she would marry him. Their union led to many moves during his years of post-graduate education. However, in 1990 they settled in Charlotte, NC, where they have resided ever since. There, they raised one son with patience and laughter; always laughter... and having adventures.
Joan was known by her friends, colleagues and patients as being her to make someone else's life better...offering a smile, words of encouragement, and always love. She thoroughly immersed herself in her 50-year nursing career from bedside nursing, to nursing administration, to research compliance. From her start as a bedside nurse, Joan rose to running a General Clinic Research Center at UAB and she retired as AVP of Research Compliance at Carolinas Medical Center (now Atrium). After retirement, she similarly enjoyed the volunteer work she did with the Assistance League of Charlotte. Joan loved antiquing, home decorating, and especially decorating for each holiday. Her Christmas Winter Wonderland was a sight to see!
Joan is survived by her husband, psychologist Bryan E. Connell, PhD, son Benjamin D. Connell, and extended family. She was preceded in death by her parents and three siblings Marilyn Jean Zurmuehlen, PhD, Carolyn Zurmuehlen Weimer, RN, and Karl Zurmuehlen.
A memorial service will be held at Hankins and Whittington Funeral Home in Dilworth neighborhood on November 20, 2022 at 2:00 pm. Sincere thanks to the entire staff of Levine Cancer Center of Charlotte, and especially to Dr. Reza Nazemzadeh, for their dedicated and compassionate care. In lieu of flowers, donations are welcome at the Levine Cancer Center or the Assistance League of Charlotte.
Online condolences may be made on the tribute wall provided.