Joan Schapiro Harrison

by | Dec 24, 2018 | Obituaries

Norfolk —Joan Schapiro Harrison passed away peacefully at home Wednesday, December 5, 2018 at the age of 93. Joan lived a full and happy life.

She was born July 6, 1925 in Norfolk and was predeceased by her parents, Harry Charles Schapiro and Lee Haber Schapiro.

Joan often spoke of her childhood years and how much her family enjoyed living in the apartment on Harrington Avenue. Growing up in Ghent with her sister Judy she would remind us of how wide the streets seemed in those early days when most families owned only one car. She graduated from Maury High School and earned her college degree from Richmond Professional Institute, extension of William and Mary College.

She connected with Harry “Hap” Harrison the minute they met. They were happily married for 63 years during which time they traveled the world with golf clubs in hand. In 1957, Joan entered the retail business with the Wards Corner based Maternity Shops of Norfolk until the business sold in 1966. She played Mah Jong twice a week with lifelong friends and was known to be quick with the tiles.

Joan volunteered at the Beth Sholom Home gift shop and was a legacy member of the Hebrew Ladies Charity organization. She was a devoted member of Ohef Sholom Temple where she was an honorary member of the board of directors.

Joan held many family positions. She was a sister, wife, mother, mother-in-law, and a Nana and great grandmother. Together with her sister Judy, the family referred to them as “The Nanas.” Joan carried out these roles with kindness, patience, and an enduring sense of sweetness. She offered a warm smile to everyone.

Joan is survived by her sister, Judy S. Eichelbaum, sister-in-law, Edythe C. Harrison, daughters Gail Grossman (Steve) of Chapel Hill and Nancy Wall (Alvin) of Virginia Beach. Her beloved grandsons are Sam (Jamie) and Pete (Mollie) Grossman and Michael (Robin) and Ben Wall. She will be missed by many nieces, nephews, and great-nieces and nephews, and great-great nieces and nephews.

The Harrison-Wall families thank Jewish Family Service and Joan’s caregivers. Memorial contributions may be made to Ohef Sholom Temple and Jewish Family Service of Tidewater.

A memorial service was held at Ohef Sholom Temple in the Sinai Chapel. H.D. Oliver Funeral Apartments.