In Our Care

Joan Virginia Abel

05/02/1931 - 12/26/2020


Obituary For Joan Virginia Abel

Joan Virginia Abel, 89, of Barrington, died, Saturday, December 26, 2020, at Crestwood Nursing & Rehabilitation Center, Child Street, Warren.

Born in New York City, NY, she was the daughter of the late Robert J. and Mary V. (Higgins) Abel.

Joan had worked as an executive assistant for House Beautiful Magazine in New York City for many years early in her career, and as a proofreader for the Asbury Park Press in Neptune, NJ, before she retired. She also spent time working at Teterboro Airport in NJ and loved flying. While she never did get her pilots license, she often talked about practicing stalls over the Statue of Liberty.

She lived her life with a quiet dignity and generosity that extended not only to her family, but even to strangers in need shed read about in the local paper. She was an avid lover of animals, the tinier and cuter, the better! A big believer in education, she implored her children and grandchildren to study hard. She was a voracious reader, quickly working her way through tote bags of books from the library, with her favorite subject being World War II history. When not reading, she watched sports of all kinds, especially soccer.

She is survived by a son, Gordon J. Toth and his wife Denise of Neptune, NJ; two daughters, Nancy T. Gamelin and her husband John of Barrington, RI, and Linda M. Irwin and her husband Bryan of Little Britain, PA; and nine grandchildren: Jim, Liz, Rob, John, Gray, Sarah, Dane, Luke and Kent. She is predeceased by her brother, Robert J. Abel and her former husband, Leo Toth.

A graveside service will be held on Wednesday, December 30, 2020, at 11AM, in Gate of Heaven Cemetery, 10 West Stevens Avenue, Hawthorne, NY.

Calling hours are omitted.

Information/On-Line condolences please visit-

Arrangements are by Smith Funeral & Memorial Services, 8 Schoolhouse Road, Warren, RI.

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  • Joan was an incredibly loving and generous grandmother to my children. She made holidays fun and made report cards a celebration! Personally, she was the best mother-in-law I could have asked for. She encouraged my education and career in too many ways to count. She bought me my first interview suit and helped me with tuition and child care to ensure my success. I'll never forget her fabulous dinners and all the wonderful gifts she has given the family over the years. We will all miss her so very much.

  • Love you, Grandma! You will be forever missed.

  • My greatest condolences to the family. Nancy, I have great memories of your mother drinking her coffee, watching TV. She is in the hands of our Lord and may she rest in piece with her loved ones that had gone before her... Yasushi

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