Joan F. Lane, 77, of Gloucester, passed away at home surrounded by her family after a valiant battle with cancer.
Joni, as she was known to friends and family, was the beloved wife of Kevin, with whom she shared 57 years of marriage.
Joni was born on December 7, 1945, in Springfield to John and Joan McMahon as the second of 11 kids. She attended the Sisters of St. Joseph convent in Berwick, Maine, before attending Keene State College.
After marrying in 1966, the Lanes originally settled in Billerica but Joni never envisioned herself living in a cul-de-sac as a stay-at-home wife. So, with three kids in tow and with her full encouragement, it was decided that Kevin would attend graduate school in Cambridge.
During this time, Joni became director of research at the Republican Leader’s office at the Massachusetts House of Representatives, and later went on to become executive director of the Massachusetts Children’s Lobby.
In 1977, the Lanes made the move to Marblehead Neck, where they would spend the next 20 years raising their family and racing sailboats.
She became a consultant to Citizens for Limited Taxation in 1981 for the implementation of Proposition 2 1/2, legislation limiting the property tax levied by a municipality. This role led to her founding Lane & Company, a husband-and-wife enterprise centered around Massachusetts state municipal financing. By her own admission, “it’s not the sexiest business.” But it was everything they had dreamed of: intellectually stimulating, impactful and most important, all their own.
In 1996, the Lanes moved to Gloucester and joined the Sandy Bay Yacht Club in Rockport. Her love of the sailing community grew, and she became the 2006 chairperson of the Rhodes 19 National Regatta. Later, she was elected a director, then president of the Rockport Garden Club, and a board member of the Eastern Point Association.
Joni is survived by the love of her life, Kevin; her three children, Michael and his wife Kathleen of Middleton; Sean and his fiancée Kristin of Gloucester; and Shannon and her partner Mike of Beverly; as well as her seven grandchildren, Alexandra and her husband Lou of Boston, Matthew (Denver, Colorado), Aidan (Salem), Sophie and Molly (Middleton), and Finnegan and Ava of Manchester-by-the-Sea.
Services will be on Sept. 23 at 10 a.m. at St. Joachim’s Church at 56 Broadway Ave, Rockport, followed by a reception at Shalin Liu, 37 Main St, Rockport, at 11:30 a.m. In lieu of flowers, donations in her memory may be made to Care Dimensions, 75 Sylvan St., Suite B-102, Danvers, 01923.
Leigh Blander is an experienced TV, radio and print journalist who has written hundreds of stories for local newspapers, including the Marblehead Reporter. She also works as a PR specialist.