Mary Joan McCandless, 86, of Kent, passed away Thursday, December 26 at Emeritus at Ravenna. Born March 20, 1927 in Garrett, Indiana, she was the daughter of John and Daisy (Stoner) Ellington.
Joan was a gifted musician. She learned to play the piano at age 5, and was organist of her church at age 10. In 1952 she received the Bachelor's Degree in Organ and Church Music from the Indiana University School of Music and in subsequent years had held positions as Organist or Organist-Choir Master at various churches in New Jersey, Washington State, and Northeast Ohio. Local churches she served were First Christian Church in Kent, Ravenna United Methodist Church, and Monroe Presbyterian Church in Akron.
She was a member of The United Methodist Church of Kent. A loyal Hoosier, Joan was a Life Member of the Indiana University Alumni Association. She also belonged to the Kent State University Alumni Association where she received a Master's degree in 1981, and the American Guild of Organists. She enjoyed gardening and loved all animals, especially her cats.
Survivors include her devoted husband of 64 years, Byron McCandless, of Kent; son, Bruce McCandless, daughter, Susan Heather McCandless, and son-in-law Jeff Hay, all of Ellijay, Georgia. She was preceded in death by her sisters, Helen Bartels, Georgianna Brown, and Jean Gatton.
Funeral services will be held 12:00 PM Saturday, February 1st at the United Methodist Church of Kent-Chapel with Rev. Dr. David Palmer and Rev. Douglas Denton officiating, where calling hours will be held 11:30 AM - 12:00 PM. In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to United Methodist Church of Kent, Memorial Fund, 1435 E. Main Street, Kent, OH 44240 or the Animal Protective League, 8122 Infirmary Road, Ravenna, OH 44266.