Joanne (English) Dockrell, 92, died peacefully on October 22, 2020, surrounded by loved ones. She was the beloved mother of Kevin Dockrell of Macon, Ga., Cynthia Dockrell (and husband Jim Krosschell) of Newton, and Anne Dockrell of Hagerstown, Md.
The fourth of five children born to the late Kathryn and John English on May 6, 1928, Joanne grew up in a house full of music in Stoneham, demonstrating from an early age her own talent at the piano. She attended Syracuse University for two years before completing her education at Katharine Gibbs School in Boston, and in 1950 she married Donald Dockrell. While raising her three children, Joanne worked as a legal secretary, executive assistant, and court reporter in the various locations where Don’s job took the family, but it was always the music that sustained her. She made many friends everywhere she went, and her love of people, coupled with her ability to play everything on the piano from classical pieces to jazz and show tunes, delighted all who knew her. She was the life of every party, revelers surrounding her at the keyboard as she led them in song. Her own love of singing, and her gift for harmony, led her to join the Sweet Adelines organization, through which she sang in quartets and directed as well as coached large choruses in both Georgia and Massachusetts, composing some of her own musical arrangements along the way. In retirement, she gave piano lessons to a steady stream of students.
After Don’s death in 2005, Joanne moved from Macon, Georgia, where the couple had been living for many years, to her home state of Massachusetts. First in Newton and then at the St. Jeanne Jugan Residence in Somerville, where she was able to practice her lifelong Catholic faith, Joanne continued to make music and to make friends, who could always count on her to tell a good story.
Besides her children, Joanne is survived by her sister Carolyn Caci of Peabody; her grandchildren Jeremy White, Cory Dockrell, Cynthia Stuckey, Andrew Dockrell, Katherine Krosschell, and Emma Krosschell; nine great-grandchildren; two great-great-grandchildren; and many cherished nieces, nephews, and friends.
Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, a memorial Mass will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations in Joanne’s memory can be made to the Little Sisters of the Poor, Queen of Peace Provincial Residence, 110-30 221st St., Queens Village, NY 11429-2597