Joan Ann Stanko

October 8, 1940September 22, 2019

Joan Ann Stanko completed her mission on earth on the morning of Sunday, Sept. 22, 2019 as a patient in the ICU unit of St. Joseph’s Hospital, Tampa, Florida, and went to join her heavenly family leaving a sorrowing family but one grateful that her recent health struggles were over. This was Joan’s 100th-consecutive-day at four area hospitals, and we extol the final care she received at St. Joseph’s. She was supported in this long sojourn by her loving husband Joe of 57 years, who was allowed to stay full time with her, until the very last days; and by the frequent visits of their sons, their sons partners and their five grandchildren: Scott Stanko, Mark Stanko (Celina Saunders, Gabrial and Breanna Stanko, Casey Kleszczynski) and Timothy Stanko (Tracy Christner, Sara Stanko and Michael Fernstrom). These visits kept up both their spirits and hope of an eventual return home to family and neighbors. Joan Ann was born in Ashley Borough, Wilkes-Barre, PA to Anna and Andrew Durako on Oct. 8, 1940. She was the youngest of four children and was preceded in death by her parents, her brothers Thomas and Andrew Jr. and her beloved sister Ann Marie Clark. Joan graduated in the Business curriculum from Hanover Township HS, Class of ’58, and was active as a Majorette. Joan had a beautiful soprano voice and participated in the Dozenaires Choir, various stage productions and was Class Secretary. Joe, her future husband first met her in 9th grade, but it was not until their senior year that they got together as a couple. After HS, Joan worked at Blue Cross Blue Shield and then as a key punch operator for the Social Security Administration in W-B, as she waited for Joe to finish King’s College. In 1962 Joan lost her Mother a few months prior to being married to Joe on June 23rd in Holy Rosary Slovak Church, Ashley, PA and they left soon after for Champaign-Urbana Illinois to start married life together, as Joe pursued further graduate studies in Chemistry. Joan worked there as a secretary at Bailey and Himes Sporting Goods where she had the opportunity to become acquainted with many of the Coaches of Univ. of Illinois teams. Their first son Timothy was born there in 1966, just before leaving for Joe’s first teaching position at Penn State University in State College, PA. Their second son, Scott, was born there in 1970. In 1973, Joe had the opportunity to join the Chemistry faculty at the young and growing Univ. of South Florida in Tampa and the family moved to the great state of Florida and took up residence in beautiful Temple Terrace. Their youngest son Mark was born there in 1974. Remaining home to raise their three boys, Joan did hold part-time jobs as a Lunch Room Assistant and a Teacher’s Aide at Temple Terrace Elementary. Also at the request of Father Nicholas McLoughlin, then pastor of Corpus Christi Catholic Church, Joan organized the Parish’s first participation in the Meals-on-Wheels program. With the children grown, Joan took up full time work first in the delicatessen at Winn Dixie supermarket and later for several years in the Social Activities Office of John Knox Retirement Village in Tampa. Subsequent to that, Joan held secretarial positions in the law firms of Barkan and Neff, Ellen Osterman, PA and in the last 15 years before her retirement in 2003, as an Executive Secretary in the General Counsel’s Office at the University of South Florida. Prior and after retirement Joan was an ardent supporter and seasons ticket holder of the USF Bulls Football team, until the onset of arthritis sidelined her to a wheelchair. Joan also was a Green Bay Packers NFL fan and so enjoyed going to garage sales. Always wanting to own a Cadillac, she indeed found and purchased a luxurious, used 1973 black, hardtop at one sale, which she enjoyed driving for years. Growing up in the ’50’s and a lover of music, Elvis Presley was her favorite and she was a collector of his memorabilia and also Teddy Bears. Her iPhone had over 75 songs downloaded and she so enjoyed texting family members and friends, and keeping up with the happenings of her nieces and nephews in the Carducci, Clark and Durako families via Face Book. Personality-wise Joan was a person of strong convictions and great personal courage. The family often marveled how while grocery shopping once, she confronted and retrieved her wallet from under the coat of another woman who had just taken it from Joan’s purse in the grocery cart, as Joan bent to reach for a refrigerated item! Joan always gave and expected strong commitment from her husband and family. Upon marriage Joan had their wedding bands inscribed with “J I L U D” for “Joined in Love until Death” and both honored it. In retirement, Joan served as Crime Watch Captain for their Temple Grove Estates neighborhood off Whiteway Drive and 61st Street where she and Joe hosted for several years the National-Night-Out Neighborhood Hot Dog and Sauerkraut Fest. Most fulfilling to her and Joe in retirement though, was being able to enjoy babysitting their two youngest grandchildren, Gabrial and Breanna, on most Mondays for the past 14 years. They also so much enjoyed going to their 50th Hanover High School Class reunion in 2008. During the difficult past three months, Joan and Joe were grateful for the long distance prayer support of her niece Sharon Clark-Carducci and family (Raleigh, NC), her two sister-in-law’s Kay Durako (Lake Hiawatha, NJ) and Joan Durako (Mountaintop, PA), Joe’s cousin Donna Brady-Kindler and husband John (Hendersonville, NC), Joe’s sister-in-law Dawn Stanko (Lee Park, PA) and Marge and Dick Buzzelli (Leesburg, VA). Joan also received tremendous local prayer support also from her neighbors on 110th Ave, Joe’s fellow members of the St. Vincent de Paul Society, the parishioners at Corpus Christi, Mark and Celina’s sister Jessica Dial’s family, and from her son Scott’s extensive local and distant prayer chain including Steve, Melba, Brian and Katie McBride, Phaedra McGee and family, Kellie Harmon-Nieves and the Donato family in Philadelphia While hospitalized, their spirits were regularly nourished by visits of Eucharistic Ministers from Corpus Christi and St. Lawrence Parishes. They were also grateful for the care given by the medical and nursing staff at Advent Health, Kindred Central, Tampa Rehabilitation and Health Care, and St. Joseph’s hospitals and their family physician Dr. Ramon Santiago. Funeral arrangements are being handled by Terrace Oaks Funeral Home, 12690 North 56th St. Temple Terrace, FL 33617, 813-988-9200,, where a viewing is scheduled from 6 to 8 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 27, 2019. A funeral mass will be held at 1:00 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 28, 2019 at Corpus Christi Catholic Church, 9715 N. 56th St., Temple Terrace, FL, 813-988-1593, followed by entombment at 2:30 p.m. at Sunset Memory Gardens, 11005 N US Hwy 301, Thonotosassa, FL 33592, 813-528-1463.


  • Visitation Friday, September 27, 2019
  • Funeral Mass Saturday, September 28, 2019


Joan Ann Stanko

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Melissa Langston

September 26, 2019

It was an honor to have known mama Stanko. I met her when I was 15 introduced by her middle son Scott which I would love to thank her for bringing him into the world we both share something in common we have an unconditional love for Scott . I think Scott got a lot of his awesome personality from her she was always so happy always smiling with the nicest things to say she was a great listener and she always remembered everything I told her . All three of her sons are amazing people she loved her family dearly as they loved her.I will always admire her marriage to papa Joe ,they had the marriage that dreams are made of so precious together. I will miss your beautiful smile and your infectious laugh , give Elvis a kiss for me . Until we meet again ❤️

Terri Bernard

September 26, 2019

So many years our families were intertwined and I truly miss those times. I will forever have those Holiday memories and hold them dear to me. Joan always knew how to provide a Thanksgiving meal for as many people who wanted to come and sit at her table. You were a strong woman and supporter. You will be truly missed.
Much Love for your family in these days and months to come.
Joe, Tim, Scott and Mark my thoughts and Love will be with you.

Terri and Barry Bernard

Kellie Harmon

September 24, 2019

Mrs Stanko,. I’m so sad you’re gone but very grateful you’re not suffering. My best childhood memories are of your family. You tolerated my phone calls when dinner was over -time to come out and play. We had our secret codes. You taught me how to sew. You welcomed me into your home. Your son is my best friend and will be for life. I know joe is singing in the garage for you. I promise to help your family when I can. Your family had been a blessing through all of our ups and downs. May you Rest In Peace. So much love always.