Joan Catherine Kaldawi

Joan Catherine Kaldawi, 79, passed away at home on Sunday, July 2, 2017 following a valiant struggle with breast cancer. A resident of Midland Park, NJ for 47 years, she was born in St. Marys, PA on October 2nd, 1937 to Loretta (Bobenreith) Lanzel and Francis Lanzel.

Joan received a bachelor’s degree in art education at the Indiana University of Pennsylvania and worked as an art teacher in St. Marys area schools. After devoting several years to raising her four children, she pursued a second career earning another degree in accounting and working for several decades at Allied Signal/Honeywell as a senior accountant.

A gifted artist, Joan generously lent her talents to community and church projects over the years, including serving as art director for Midland Park High School graduation balls, painting sets for a local theatre, and designing the 60th anniversary program booklet for Nativity Church. Over the years, many of Joan’s paintings, posters, and signs could be seen around the church and occasionally in town.

Joan was an active, devoted member of Nativity Church in Midland Park and served in various roles over the years. She was a Eucharistic minister at the church and to Catholics at the Mill Gardens Assisted Living. A former team leader for the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA) program, she led sessions on Catholic social justice teachings and helped promote the program.  She assisted with a Bible study course and taught catechism for many years, bringing her considerable art skills into the classroom to plan craft activities for her students.

She is survived by her beloved husband of 56 years, Fouad Kaldawi, and her daughters, Muna Killingback and her husband Timothy and Jennifer Cavanagh and her husband Peter; her sons Wade Kaldawi and his wife Kara and Bertrand Kaldawi; her five grandchildren, Katherine, Thomas, Julian, Jeremy, and Peter Oscar, and her sister, Mary Heatherdale and brother, Joseph Lanzel.

Friends may call on Thursday, July 6 from 6 to 8 pm at the Vander Plaat Funeral Home in Wyckoff, NJ and a funeral Mass will be held at 11 am on Friday, July 7 at Nativity Church in Midland Park, NJ.

A Committal Service will be held in the St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery Chapel, St. Marys, PA, on Saturday, July 8, 2017, at 11:15 AM, with the Rev. Eric Vogt, OSB, officiating. Burial will follow in the St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery.

Donations to Catholic Relief Services (CRS) in her memory would be appreciated.

Local funeral arrangements are under the direction of the Lynch-Radkowski Funeral Home.

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