Joan Annette Leonard 1934 - 2022

Joan Annette Leonard passed away August 15, 2022, at home with her family at her side. Now she is free of the pain she endured with so much bravery. She was born January 30, 1934, in Port Leyden, New York, to Marjorie and Frank Benfield. She was the youngest of four children, all of whom have passed before her.

Joni lived in several places on the East Coast while growing up, moving as her father was assigned to different churches as an Episcopal priest. She spent her later childhood in Hamilton, Massachusetts, where she graduated high school. She married and had four children with her first husband, Harold. Joni was great at being a mom and beloved by the children in her neighborhood, but she always maintained a wanderlust in her heart and longed for adventure and travel.

She was delighted to finally meet her soulmate, Stephen, who would make those dreams become reality for her. They traveled to California and soon married. After relocating several times, they settled in McMinnville, Oregon, in the early '90s. She created a beautiful home and property and raised German Shepherds. The dogs were central to her being. She worked at several jobs over the years, mainly in social services with young folks.

Joni enjoyed travel, visiting family in New England, Florida and California, loved the camp in Maine, visited Europe, and particularly enjoyed holidays in Mexico.

She leaves her husband, Stephen; daughter, Heather; son, Scott; daughter, Cynthia; daughter-in-law, Becky; and grandchildren, Cayenne, Hannah, Adam, Benjamin and Patrick. Sadly, her first-born son, Jeff, predeceased her, shortly before her own death.

A memorial gathering of friends and family will be held at 2 p.m. September 11, at St. Barnabas Episcopal Church in McMinnville, followed by refreshments at her home afterward. To leave condolences, please visit