Joan Ipsen

Obituary of Joan W. Ipsen

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Joan Wilson Ipsen, 96, of Niskayuna, NY, passed away peacefully on February 8, 2021 in Cohoes, NY. Joan was born at Albany Memorial hospital to Douglas Rider Wilson and Gertrude Van Antwerp Stevens on September 26, 1924. She was raised in Manhattan and spent summers in Rensselaerville, NY. She attended Dana Hall School in Wellesley MA, and graduated in 1942. She went on to earn a Bachelor of Arts from Smith College in 1946, and a Masters of Library Science from SUNY Albany in 1973. Upon graduation from Smith College, Joan worked for 3 years as an assistant to Curator of the American Wing in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and subsequently as a gifted Reference Librarian for the Schenectady County Library for 27 years. Joan thoroughly enjoyed the outdoors, helping her husband Peter construct and maintain a beautiful Adirondack camp at Jenny Lake. She enjoyed gardening, hiking, bird watching, and was also an avid tennis player. Always the patient teacher, Joan passed the love of nature and sports along to her four children. Joan was active in the Junior League of Schenectady and supported many fund raising events for Smith College. In retirement, Joan served as the Librarian for the First Reformed Church of Schenectady where she frequently read stories to children and advised adults on their next great selection. Joan is preceded in death by her loving husband of 62 years, Peter G. Ipsen. She is survived by her four married children: Carol Ipsen (James Alpert) of Voorheesville; John Ipsen (Kris Wegerson) of Bayfield, WI; James Ipsen (Emily Hard) of Lancaster, PA; and Daniel Ipsen (Jamie Biggs) of Glenville. She is also survived by 9 grandchildren and a great grandchild: Kate Alpert (Christoff), Jennifer Ipsen, Laurel Ipsen, Nathan Ipsen, Erin Ipsen, Benjamin Ipsen, Anders Ipsen, Anna Ipsen (Mayba), Heather Ipsen, and new born Peter Ipsen. A private family service will be held in the Spring with the Reverend Daniel Carlson of First Reformed Church of Schenectady officiating. Joan will be buried at Albany Rural Cemetery, Albany, NY. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the First Reformed Church Library at 8 N. Church Street, Schenectady, NY 12305; the Edmund Niles Huyck Preserve, PO Box 189, 5052 Delaware Turnpike, Rensselearville, NY 12147; or Habitat for Humanity 207 Sheridan Ave. Albany, NY 12210. The family wishes to extend their gratitude to the staff of Eddy Village Green - Marjorie Doyle for their compassionate care during Joan’s final years. May Joan and Peter, now reunited, rest in peace.
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