With great sadness, we recently learned of the death of Joan Benoit of Pointe Claire, Quebec in late 2022. Joan was a devoted genealogist and volunteered and helped run the Quebec Family History Society (QFHS) for over thirty years. Ever patient, she helped both the experienced and novice genealogist in their research. She was the “go to” person when anyone had a question. In the words of Claire Lindell:
“It was spring of 2012 when I walked in to the QFHS. Joan greeted me with a smile and made me feel welcome. She offered to help me with my quest for ancestors. She took Rene Jetté’s big blue dictionnaire from the shelf and asked me the names of those I was searching. Within minutes I found my mother’s ancestral family … Claude Jodouin who arrived in Ville Marie in the mid 1600s. I was off to the races and have never looked back, thanks to Joan.”
Ruth Dougherty (left) and Joan Benoit (right) chat in front of Earl John Chapman who is seated at the table speaking with Oskar Keller during Military Roots Day, 2012, at the QFHS.
Joan’s extensive knowledge, accompanied by a warm smile, has helped numerous researchers over the years. Many of her fellow genealogists became her friends. As well as being an avid researcher, she also had a vision of what was needed to promote genealogical research and always accepted the challenge to do what was needed. For approximately twenty years Joan was a well-known visitor to the Archives nationales du Québec on Mullins Street in Pointe-Saint-Charles and later the Archives nationales on Viger Square in Old Montreal. She researched hundreds of family lineages.
Jacques Gagné and Joan Benoit enjoyed a friendship of many years, which Jacques says can best be described in Proverbs 27:17, “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” In other words, good friends bring out the best in one another and enhance each other’s strengths.
Joan’s quiet presence, always supportive, will be sorely missed.
3 thoughts on “Tribute to Joan Benoit”
Joan was a member of the Archives Committee of the Montreal & Ottawa Conference of the United Church for many years. I valued her knowledge and diligence and have missed her over the last few years.
I am so sorry about this Sad news! I live in Pte-Claire and I used to live in Pte-St-Charles too many yrs ago!
Many times I went to the Library on Viger as I was searching for myself! I was adopted but finally I’ve found my bio family with the help of a nephew Glenn who took the test with Ancestry! He is an Genealogist himself so I was lucky to get help from him!
Now, I am helping my adopted siblings who went through DNA test! They are from Montreal, and my sister Rejeanne has Chapman, Benoit, Tremblay, Collins, Brazeau, Douville, Cote etc.. as Matches! Her bio mother was Glorivina Cote who married Napoleon Paris!
I am sure I met Joan Benoit before!
I offer my Condolences to the family! Nicole Madden Stephens
I met her at the QFHS years ago when she accommodated a small group of people invited to form a writing group sharing short 500-word stories about their ancestors. Ten years later, the same nine of us are still meeting and writing our short stories. Thank you Joan for helping launch Genealogy Ensemble.
May she rest in peace.