LEPARD, Joan Helen

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Joan Lepard (McLean) was born on September 12, 1946, as a fraternal twin, in Red Deer, Alberta. After being diagnosed with Stage 4 Invasive Breast Cancer in mid-October 2019, Joan, used her exceptional strength, and fought very hard to beat this terrible disease, but she was plagued by on going infections and complications. Eight weeks after her diagnosis, Joan past away peacefully on December 15, 2019 surrounded by her family.

Joan grew up in Edmonton where she shared her infectious love for life with her family and friends. Joan married her soul mate, Bryce Lepard, on January 20, 1968 and they had two children, Roth and Jackie. Joanie, as Bryce and her family called her, was well known for her incredible baking skills, love of children, sewing skills, love of nature, her amazing hugs and love for her family and friends. In 1975, Joanie and Bryce moved to Stony Plain, Alberta, where she lived for over 44 years. Joanie was a natural born caregiver and after her children started school she spent her time with other families caring for their children and supporting their households. Joan was an active volunteer in her community and was always finding ways to contribute to local organizations by providing her time, donating her knitting projects and raising funds. After 38 years of marriage Bryce passed away on January 26, 2005. Joan leaves to mourn her children Roth Lepard, Jackie and Andrew Astle, special niece Heather McLean and great nephew Dominic McLean, her seven grand children, Nicole, Evan, Amber, Ethan, Haley, Aidan, and Serina and great grand child Kennedy. Joanie also leaves behind her siblings Roberta (Garry) Ludwig, her twin brother John (Sharon) McLean, Rob (Anita) McLean, brother and sister-in-law Ross and Cathy Lepard, special family friends Morris Sr., Marietta, Morris Jr. and Melissa Maduro, 25 nieces and nephews; James (Janet) Lepard, Janet (Dean) Bauer, Mary (Matthew) Statham, Michael (Pragya) Lepard, Tom (Katrina) Lepard, June (Clare) Lepard, Shirley (Gary) Lang, Bridget (Zak) McLean, Barb (Jeff) Stollery, Amy (Dave) Wood, Kathleen (Nate) McLean and Debra (Rick) Wathen, cousins Georgie (Bob) Tucker, Judy (Tony) White, Bruce (Nancy) Middleton and Janet (Uwe) Embacher, 21 great nieces and nephews, 5 great grand nieces and nephews, numerous second and third cousins and many life long friends. Joan was predeceased by her parents Robert and Nora McLean, her Auntie Betty and Uncle Stan Middleton. Uncle Jack and Jessie McLean, and Auntie Ellen McLean, her grandparents Joseph Stelfox, and Robert and Elizabeth McLean. Bryce’s parents Silas and Dorothy Lepard and Bryce’s grandmother Mary-Etta Lepard.

Please join the family for a celebration of Joanie’s life on December 28, 2:00pm at the Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 5010-52 Avenue, Stony Plain. In remembrance of Joan, the family asks that attendees wear something red. To celebrate Joan’s generous and giving spirit, in leu of flowers please send donations to Joan’s favorite charities, Light up Your Life Society, Stony Plain (http://www.lightupyourlifesociety.org/Contact-Us.html) or Basically Babies, (https://basicallybabies.org/) St. Albert.

The family would also like to extend a special thank you to the Elder Friendly Care Unit 5G2 at the University of Alberta Hospital, Dr. Wagg. Dr. Carr and Dr. Surkan for their care of our sweet Joannie. We specifically thank her nurses; Jas, Ashica, Shauny, Teddy, Agnes, Jill, Christina and Becky for their gentleness and exceptional care. A special thank you to Dr. Tim and Jennifer with Palliative Care and Pastor Lee for their compassion and concern for mom and genuine care and support of her family.

Love You Forever – by Robert Munsch
A mother held her new baby and very slowly rocked him back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. And while she held him, she sang: I’ll love you forever, I’ll like you for always, As long as I’m living my baby you’ll be.

The baby grew. He grew and he grew and he grew. He grew until he was two years old, and he ran all around the house. He pulled all the books off the shelves. He pulled all the food out of the refrigerator and he took his mother’s watch and flushed it down the toilet. Sometimes his mother would say, “this kid is driving me CRAZY!” But at night time, when that two-year-old was quiet, she opened the door to his room, crawled across the floor, looked up over the side of his bed; and if he was really asleep she picked him up and rocked him back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. While she rocked him she sang: I’ll love you forever, I’ll like you for always, As long as I’m living my baby you’ll be.

The little boy grew. He grew and he grew and he grew. He grew until he was nine years old. And he never wanted to come in for dinner, he never wanted to take a bath, and when grandma visited he always said bad words. Sometimes his mother wanted to sell him to the zoo! But at night time, when he was asleep, the mother quietly opened the door to his room, crawled across the floor and looked up over the side of the bed. If he was really asleep, she picked up that nine-year-old boy and rocked him back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. And while she rocked him she sang: I’ll love you forever, I’ll like you for always, As long as I’m living my baby you’ll be.

The boy grew. He grew and he grew and he grew. He grew until he was a teenager. He had strange friends and he wore strange clothes and he listened to strange music. Sometimes the mother felt like she was in a zoo! But at night time, when that teenager was asleep, the mother opened the door to his room, crawled across the floor and looked up over the side of the bed. If he was really asleep she picked up that great big boy and rocked him back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. While she rocked him she sang: I’ll love you forever, I’ll like you for always, As long as I’m living my baby you’ll be.

That teenager grew. He grew and he grew and he grew. He grew until he was a grown-up man. He left home and got a house across town. But sometimes on dark nights the mother got into her car and drove across town. If all the lights in her son’s house were out, she opened his bedroom window, crawled across the floor, and looked up over the side of his bed. If that great big man was really asleep she picked him up and rocked him back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. And while she rocked him she sang: I’ll love you forever, I’ll like you for always, As long as I’m living my baby you’ll be.

Well, that mother, she got older. She got older and older and older. One day she called up her son and said, “You’d better come see me because I’m very old and sick.” So her son came to see her. When he came in the door she tried to sing the song. She sang: I’ll love you forever, I’ll like you for always… But she couldn’t finish because she was too old and sick. The son went to his mother. He picked her up and rocked her back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. And he sang this song: I’ll love you forever, I’ll like you for always, As long as I’m living my Mommy you’ll be.

When the son came home that night, he stood for a long time at the top of the stairs. Then he went into the room where his very new baby daughter was sleeping. He picked her up in his arms and very slowly rocked her back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. And while he rocked her he sang: I’ll love you forever, I’ll like you for always, As long as I’m living my baby you’ll be.

Location information

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Memorial Service
Good Shepherd Lutheran Church - Stony Plain

5010-52 Avenue, Stony Plain, AB, CA

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