Virgin Mary

Joan French

October 24, 1931 ~ September 30, 2021 (age 89)


Joan Margaret French, 89, entered into eternal life on September 30th at her home in Moscow ID.   

Joan French was born Joan Margaret St. Martin in Hinckley MN to Gerry and Frances St. Martin on October 24th, 1931. In her early years she lived in the Black Hills of South Dakota and then moved to Selah WA.  She graduated from Saint Joseph’s Academy in Yakima WA. She later studied nursing at Saint Elizabeth’s Nursing School also located in Yakima.

Joan was married to Kay Joseph French on May 1st, 1951 in Yakima.  They made their home in Seattle WA until 1957 when they moved to Kennewick WA.   In 1965 they settled in Moscow where they raised their family of 14 children.  Joan was a faithful member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church of Moscow. She enjoyed her family and travelling.  

In 1981 Patty Baker, nominated her mother Joan for “Palouse Mother of the Year.”  This is what she wrote: “In a society where children are pushed and prodded to be achievers, my mom has chosen gentle support and a warm embrace.  Her mothering has been two phased; nurturing and loving each child, then watching the object of her love depart (and loving us still in our absence).”

She was preceded in death by her husband of 56 years, Kay Joseph French, and her daughter Patricia Anne Baker. 

Surviving are her children, Mary A (David) Washburn of Lewiston ID, Joseph G French (Gaetana) of Sioux Falls SD, Charles Baker, son-in-law (husband to Patty Baker) of Quilcene WA, Dorothy A Salisbury (Richard) of Boise ID, James A French of Boise, Elizabeth A Hellinger (Mark), of Farmington WA, John J French of Raleigh NC, Jerome M French (Janet) of Rancho Cordova CA, Catherine A French of Olympia WA, Margaret A French (Ken Williams) of Moscow, William M French of Boise, Teresa A Heald (David) of Boise,  Robert M French of Pullman WA, Jean M French (Michael Harrison) of Seattle.

 She also leaves 29 grandchildren, and 30 great grandchildren along with her siblings, Ted St. Martin of Jacksonville FL, Mary Schoch of Yakima, Dorothy Gregorich (Bob) of Henderson NV, Don St. Martin (Margaret) of Naches WA, Margie McDowell (Don) of Yakima, DeeDee Thomas of Yakima, Gerard St. Martin (Linda) of Yakima and numerous nieces and nephews.

Viewing will be held at Short’s Funeral Chapel on Tuesday October 5, 2021 from Noon to 6 and Wednesday October 6, 2021 from 8 to 3.

The Rosary will be recited at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Moscow at 7 pm on October 6th.

Funeral Mass will be held at St Mary’s Catholic Church Oct 7, at 10 am with lunch to follow at St Mary’s Family Center.

The family suggest memorial be made to the Elite Foundation at 1370 Bridge St, Clarkston WA, 99403, or St. Mary’s Catholic Church of Moscow.

To send flowers to Joan's family, please visit our floral store.


October 6, 2021

8:00 AM to 3:00 PM
Short's Funeral Chapel
1225 East 6th Street
Moscow, ID 83843

Funeral Mass
October 7, 2021

10:00 AM
St. Mary's Catholic Church
618 E 1st st
Moscow, ID 83843

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