(Lucie) Joan Usher was born in Tiverton, Devon, England, on Nov. 13, 1924, to Charles Bulgin Williams and Lily (King) Williams. She aided in the war efforts by ensuring that local buses were able to maintain their routes. Shortly after World War II ended, she emigrated to the United States,following her sister, Louise, who had married an American soldier. She began life in the United States by residing in Des Moines, Iowa. Joan briefly worked for Look Magazine in their Des Moines offices, but later moved to Cedar Rapids. She met her husband, Herbert Warren Usher, there and they were married in 1949. Joan was very proud of the fact that she was a naturalized citizen.
Joan worked most of her life at Collins Radio (now Rockwell International) building components for the airline and aerospace industries. She was proud of the fact that she helped to build some of the instrumentation for the early Apollo missions to the moon.
When Joan and Herbert retired in the early ‘80s, they moved to warmer climes in south Texas. Sadly, Herbert passed away in September 1983. Joan remained in Texas, serving at the American Legion and enjoying time with friends and family. In 2011, she moved to Brenham, Texas, developing new friends and to be closer to Deborah, her younger daughter. Joan again moved in 2017 to the Denver area to live closer to her older daughter, Denise, and upon Denise’s retirement in 2018, moved to Pagosa Springs. A life-long avid card player, she enjoyed her weekly “Hand and Foot” card games with her friends from the Pagosa Springs senior center. Joan was an outgoing and joyful person and found friendships wherever she went.
Joan is survived by two daughters: Denise (Eric) Fisk, Pagosa Springs, and Deborah (Rev. David) Ottsen, Holland, Mich.; one grandchild, Carrie (Chad) Pagels, and her great-grandson, Ian, of Zeeland, Mich.
Joan passed away on Jan. 27 following a brief illness. A memorial is planned for May or June. Contact Hood Mortuary for details.