Joanne Marie Tracey, 79, of Gaylord, passed away suddenly Sunday, December 19, 2021.
Joanne was born in Ferndale, Michigan, the only child of Frank and Vern Grum. She was an icon of vitality. After graduating from Ferndale High School, Joanne worked for GM until she married Tom Lawson, with whom she had son, Curtis. She was a proud mother of Curt and loved his wife, Erin Ryan Lawson, and their daughters, Paris and Vaughn.
After her first husband’s death, she met John “Jack” Tracey, M.D. while she was volunteering at Providence Hospital in Southfield, Michigan. They later married, and together they enjoyed spending time with their large, combined family, activities at the Otsego Club and the Detroit Yacht Club, sailing and traveling the world. Grandchildren visited Joanne numerous times “Up North” for what became known as “Camp Grammy.” She loved it when the family got together. One family member noted that Joanne had the best time of anyone at a family gathering and made the party even more fun for everyone else.
Joanne made friends for life and throughout her life. She regularly connected with her high school friends and her beloved Sailing Singles. Joanne spent many active years in Gaylord with her partner Jack McCarthy, a “sailing single,” until his passing. They welcomed Jack’s many children and grandchildren into their home.
As she was in all things, Joanne was especially passionate about life “Up North.” She was an official ambassador for Gaylord in her volunteer work at the Chamber of Commerce. Unofficially, she convinced others not only to visit but also live in the area full or part-time. She was a lifetime member of the Otsego Club. In warmer weather, Joanne biked and paddled on area lakes. in the cooler weather, she hiked, skied, and snow-shoed with her dear friends (about whom she talked fondly and frequently). She never missed a Boyne City “Stroll the Streets” with them and enjoyed being a member of the Northern Michigan Women’s Club.
Joanne particularly loved her work with Challenge Mountain in Boyne City. There she assisted individuals with disabilities in outdoor activities such as skiing and kayaking.
In addition to Curt and Erin, Joanne is survived by Ann Marie Tracey (Daniel Buckley), John Tracey (Carol Moros Tracey), Greg Tracey (Karen), Carrie Murphy (James), Terrence Tracey, Cindy Lawson Dennis (Paul), Brett Lawson and numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Robert Tracey (Leigh Crowley) predeceased her.
At this time, the family has chosen to remember Joanne privately.
The family requests that donations be made to Challenge Mountain, PO Box 764 Boyne City, MI 49712, https://challengemtn.org/.
Funeral arrangements were entrusted to Nelson Funeral Home and Cremation Service, PO Box 1548, Gaylord, MI 49734.
8 comments on “Joanne M. Tracey”
I’m so sorry to learn of Joanne’s passing. She was a vibrant and kind woman who will be missed. Condolences to her family.
Dear Curt and Erin, we are so sorry to hear about Joanne, we loved her dearly, and we send you and the girls our condolences and prayers.
Jenny and Bill Boyce, neighbors
I worked for many years periodically on her log cabin. She was always smiling happy person. She was very active person snow skiing and other physical activities, thought she’d live forever. So sorry to hear of her passing. I hope John 5:28,29 is of comfort to the family.
Our family s very sad to hear of JoAnne’s passing. We’ve been neighbors for 26 years and have many memories with her and Jack, one of the most positive kind-spirited gals I’ve ever known. Bless her sweetheart and may God comfort you all during these tough times. 🙏🏻💛
Dale snd Nancy Jacob
Joanne’s gifts to our community were many. Her legacy of volunteering is lasting.
Joanne will always be remembered as an adventurer of life. Always vibrant and enjoying life to the fullest.
Thank you Joanne for being such a caring and vibrant person. Your joy and positive energy touched everyone that was in your sphere! You are missed as this winter of skiing begins. I am sure you have found the perfect run to ski up there in the heavens!
To the family of Joanne
I have many fond memories of Joanne and even in the summer of 2022 am still shocked and saddened that she passed on before us. She lived and went to school in Ferndale, MI, as did I, so we basically grew up together even though high school where we were in the same h.s. sorority. My husband and I attended her wedding and have always loved her zest for life and thought of her as the fittest of all our friends. She and Jack made a great pair. We continued to keep in contact with her as she was involved with Challenge Mountain and where she helped us contribute to the needs of that organization. We remember her with a memorial gift to World Mission with a connection to Beaver Island, where she often visited. She will always be considered kindly, especially as we pass by her beautiful home in the Elmira area. God bless the whole family as they also remember special times together with her. She will be missed.
Davilyn Stein, Beaver Island, MI