Selfless, giving, loving, and sharing are just a few words that describe Joanne (Ferraro) Belezerian-Crowley, who passed away, on Thursday, August 10, 2023, surrounded by her loving family, in the comfort of her home after a very courageous battle with cancer. She was born in Worcester, pre-deceased by her parents Natale “Chi Chi” and Catherine “Bobbie” (Trudell) Ferraro, three siblings, Dolores Campanale, John Ferraro and Anthony Ferraro. She is also pre-deceased by her first love Mark Samuel Belezerian.
Joanne was blessed with an incredible family and with the opportunity to meet someone with whom she’s shared the past twenty-seven wonderful years as husband and wife, Paul Crowley. She is also survived by three children, Kelly Amaral and her husband David, Gregory Belezerian and his wife Jamie, and Michael Piispanen and his wife Wendy; her loving grandchildren and apples of her eyes Mark and Mason Belezerian, Samantha, Nathan, and Victoria Amaral, Matthew, and Nicole Piispanen. Her niece Sherri Campanale as well other nieces, nephews, and cousins. She was blessed to have formed a special bond with her son in law’s mother, Connie Amaral.
She grew up in Worcester where she graduated from Commerce High School and The Salter Secretarial School. She was a key organizer and head cheerleader of The Mount Carmel Church CYC and the Pro Deo Club.
Joanne found herself surrounded by the love of true friends, some who remained at her side since childhood and high school and many others she met throughout her life.
Joanne worked as a special needs teacher’s aide for many years in the Worcester Public School system. She took pride in her work, helping children learn and grow. She was faith-filled and belonged to Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church as she was growing up, later becoming a member at Christ the King Parish, and then Our Lady of The Angels Parish, where she formed a wonderful bond with Fr. Charles Monroe.
The things that made her the happiest were to be surrounded by family ad friends sharing holidays, filling them with love and the wonderful foods she created. Joanne adored her grandchildren and they adored her. She was there for everything, birthdays, holidays, sporting events and even the first days on the bus.
She and Paul enjoyed cruises together and spending time down the Cape with family and friends. Card Club provided many memorable nights of beating dear friends the McNeils, Buyniskis and the Camarras. She shared many special relationships with so many people, too numerous to list but truly loved by Joanne.
Joanne was the epitome of selfless; for many years, she was dedicated to helping organizations like the Dana Farber Jimmy Fund, and Muscular Dystrophy Association with fundraising dances that she would host. She always went above and beyond to help people. She was a special kind of friend. No one was ever forgotten in Joanne’s world. She was thoughtful, generous and kind. A force to be reckoned with, and had a great sense of humor. Many referred to her as a second mom. She was an extraordinary woman who touched so many lives.
Joanne’s family would like to thank everyone who visited and reached out during the last few months of her journey. Special thanks to the Fergusons, Monfredas and Millers. Thank you to her team at Beth Israel Hospital, Dr. Rattani, Dr. Catana, Dr. Ahmed, Cecily, Liz, and Joanne’s forever friend Jane Balsamo whom she loved dearly. A heartfelt thank you to Heather, Kate, Hilary, Ann Marie and Pam of Jewish Health Care Hospice for their loving care and compassion. The work you do is angelic.
Joanne will be eternally missed but will always stay deep in our hearts. We love her to the moon and back forever and ever.
Calling Hours will be Tuesday, August 15th from 4:00pm - 7:00pm at Mercadante Funeral Home & Chapel, 370 Plantation Street, Worcester. Her Funeral Mass will be on Wednesday, August 16th at 10:00am at Our Lady of Angels Church, 1222 Main Street, Worcester (Please gather directly at the church). Interment with Mark and her parents will follow in Saint John’s Cemetery.
Joanne loved the beauty of flowers, but it is suggested that donations in her name be made to The Jimmy Fund by visiting www.jimmyfund.org (http://www.jimmyfund.org/) or to Saint Jude Children’s Hospital by visiting www.stjude.org (http://www.stjude.org/).
Rest in Heaven Joanne as you are reunited with Mark, your parents and all your family and friends who have gone before you.
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