Joan S. Korljan
January 26, 1932 – April 6, 2021
Joan Shirley Korljan was born on January 26, 1932 and passed away April 6, 2021, at the age of 89. Born in Niles, Michigan, to Sally and Duke Muller, she had one sister, Helen, 10 years her senior. She married her high school sweetheart Paul Graham and they had two children together, Debi and Jeff. They moved their family to Phoenix Arizona, before divorcing in 1962.
A loving and generous person, Joan had the ability to connect with people and make them feel special. She never forgot a birthday, anniversary or other special occasion of friends or family. She was adored by all her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. She was a wonderful friend.
Efficient and organized, Joan was intelligent and a hard worker. While raising her two children she worked her way up the ladder in Kitchell Corporation from secretary to executive assistant. Her skills eventually earned her a seat on the company board as Corporate Secretary.
In 1966 she married the love of her life, Bob Korljan, and became stepmother to his two children, Bonnie, and Bob. They were happily married for the next 45 years until his death in 2010.
Joan taught herself how to play the organ and had a beautiful soprano voice. She sang with a Scottsdale group. She exercised every morning to keep herself healthy and in shape.
Joan was an elegant and beautiful woman. She dressed beautifully, always color-coordinated down to her sunglasses. Her makeup and hair were always perfect. Beneath her feminine exterior was an inner strength. She faced life’s challenges with courage, always trying to solve them if possible.
Her greatest achievements were as wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. For the years she was a single mother she always put her children first. Through her example she taught them to be kind, generous, punctual, and thoughtful. When she became a stepmother, she accepted her stepchildren as her own, and was thrilled to welcome each grandchild and great-grandchild, surrounding them with the love she gave to all.
Joan is the beloved matriarch of the huge family she has nurtured. She is survived by her four children and their spouses, Debi and Vaughn Wesson, Jeff Graham, Bob and Ginger Korljan, and Bonnie and Bill Rabe. Grandchildren Neil, Casey, Scott, Megan, Heather, Lisa, Dawn, Kristine, Jim, Melody, Christy, and their respective spouses. Great-grandchildren Connor, Emma, Aidan, Riley, Sebastian, Remy, Tenley, Cade, Lucas, Silas, Eden, Abigail, Caleb, Ava, Brooklynn, Micah, Emma, Jace, Judah, Jack, and Vienna. She loved life and lived it to the fullest. Her loving nature and beautiful spirit will be remembered and cherished by everyone who knew her.
We love and miss her so very much. She will never be forgotten. We will carry her in our hearts always. A private Celebration of Life will take place on May 8, 2021 at Green Acres Mortuary, 401 N. Hayden Road, Scottsdale, AZ 85257
No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
Joan S. Korljan
April 14, 2021
Joani was a treasure and a pleasure to work with for her 30 years. She set the standard for efficiency, accuracy, punctuality and loyalty for all. She was beautiful inside and out and always had a smile for everyone. We sat side by side for many years and while working diligently, we raised our kids, sharing the good times and sad times. Sending my prayers for comfort and peace to the family. Love you Joani.
April 12, 2021
It is hard to believe my wonderful mother has passed on. We spoke every day and laughed about recent events or the latest exploits of the grandchildren and great grandchildren. I am grateful that I was able to help her through her health issues over the past several years and am so very sad that she couldn’t beat this last fight. Although I can’t see her each day, I will carry my treasured memories of her and all the things she taught me in my heart forever. I know she is looking down on all of us with Bob, Helen, Grandma and Grandpa and Rocky by her side.