Joan Marie Rose

Joan Marie Rose (Lagorio), 94, a previous longtime resident of Washington State, passed away October 10, 2022, in Las Vegas, Nevada. She was surrounded by her family and husband of 74 years.

Joan was born in Chicago, IL on September 7, 1928 to John and Leonora Lagorio. Her family moved to Minneapolis, MN, where she attended and graduated Southwestern High School. Her aunt Katherine Albertelli inspired her toward the arts taking her to early movies in Chicago. Joan’s greatest passions (beyond family) were jazz, arts, cinema, and the theater. Joan eventually landed a leading role in a high school play.

She met and married Leroy Herman Rose, while he was training as a pilot during the end of WWII. She always addressed him as Roy. After Leroy graduated college, his job with General Electric took the couple all around the country. They bought and/ or built houses in the following States: Massachusetts, New York, Illinois, Ohio, Connecticut, Minnesota, Florida, and Washington state.

Joan was a “renaissance” wife and mother exposing and encouraging all her children to explore the arts. A favorite of hers and her son Dan was a production of Camelot. Dan learned that music on the clarinet and played it for her every chance he got.  Every May, they would play “The Lusty Month of May” from the Broadway musical.

Her appreciation of the arts was expressed through a passion for drawing portraits in pencil and watercolor (a very challenging medium for doing human likenesses). She loved growing indoor plants and flowerpots which adorned all her homes. (She was proudest of a gardenia plant that lived over 20 years).

While living in Connecticut, Joan landed a job reviewing movies for a local community college and then went on to lead a private modeling agency. The “Models Unlimited” assignment was one of her treasured memories.

Cooking was one of her many talents. While each child had a favorite dish, her eggplant parmesan and spaghetti were the universal favorites. Her recipe was handed down from generations of Italian Americans.

Joan was not to be outdone by any man in the outdoor arena and loved to fish (and did a great deal of catching). She loved to waterski and was teaching her grandchildren how to waterski at the age of 65 on Farm Island Lake.

She was a dedicated and accomplished mother and housewife, tending to the raising of four boys and her daughter, Melanie. She was selfless in supporting everything her children and grandchildren did, spending long hours for every activity from hosting cub scout meetings to sitting on hard wooden bleachers for hours cheering her kids on in little league games and wrestling matches.

Her children gave her and Leroy a plaque in appreciation for their decades of love and caring and being true five-star parents. Being ‘old school’ Catholic, Joan took pride that none of her four boys had tattoos.

When Melanie became disabled at age 24, Joan and Leroy came out of retirement to pitch in with the raising of Melanie’s two girls, Jessica and Bridget. Most important of all, Joan instilled a strong value system and work ethic in all her children. She was the matriarch of the family and brought an intense, positive vitality into the lives of everyone she touched. She will be dearly missed.

Joan is survived by her husband, Leroy (age 95), her sons Lee. Dan (and wife, Deirdre), Steve (and wife, Judy), and Jon, her sister Donna Montgomery (Lagorio), her 13 nieces and nephews, 10 grandchildren, 7 great grandchildren and 2 great great grandchildren and her loving supporters, Lisa Rose and Debbie Rose. She was preceded in death by her daughter, Melanie, her brother John and her parents, John and Leonora Lagorio and her grandson, Zachary Rose.

There will be a memorial service on December 3, 2022, at 10:00am.

(Note, for those that are unable to attend, the service will be live broadcast.  Please contact Jon Rose at if you would like a link)

St. Viator Catholic Church

2461 E. Flamingo Rd., Las Vegas, NV 89121


Cards may be sent to:

Leroy ‘Lee” Rose

Sterling Ridge Senior Living

4255 Spencer St., Room 1006, Las Vegas, NV 89119


In lieu of flowers, please consider contributing to the National Ataxia Foundation,

11 Comments. Leave new

  • I am going to miss my phone chats and visits with my Auntie Joan. She has been my west coast “Mom” for many years. We’ve shared laughs and recipes, adventures and arts. She will be in my heart forever.

  • Rest In Peace Grandma. We love you

  • Mom – we miss you and your larger than life presence, wit, and insight. You were an amazing mother, and gifted in so many ways. You helped shape many lives and attitudes in the people around you.

    Love you always,


  • We miss you Mom. You were amazing, committed, and focused always on what was most important. We had a wonderful friendship and shared really special times.


  • In 2018 I was blessed to have met Joan Rose, my Mother-in-Law, of whom I surely was meant to love! I still remember first talking to her on the phone and she was thrilled to know I was Italian! I was so happy to have finally met my husband’s mother for the first time in 2018. Even though my time as her daughter-in-law was only for 4 yrs, we often said we felt like we knew each other much longer. My last time I saw Mama Joan was when we had to leave this last time she was in the hospital. She whispered to me thanking me for taking such good care of her. She often said “Dee, you know what I need before I even know!” This warmed my heart dearly because I felt like there wasn’t enough time with her and I was happy to know that the time we did spend together she was very appreciative! The last time we spoke on the phone she had called to make sure we got home safely. She said she wished I could have stayed because she surely missed my assistance. We said our I love you’s and was so thankful to have one more last laugh with her as I always managed to make her laugh! Mama Joan, I hope you’re together in heaven with my mother having some good talks about me and how much my mom would have loved my husband, her “favorite” son Dan !!! 😉 I miss you Mama Joan and our weekly talks; especially discussing the Seahawks game! Love, Dee xoxo

  • It’s a different world without you in it, but knowing Mel has company and can walk along side you now gives me some comfort. Your encouragement and endless support made me who I am today. I love you for it!

  • My earliest memories of Mom were full of laughter, with her close friends in the neighborhoods we lived in. Above all, Mom loved to laugh, spend time with friends, and dearly, intensely, loved and cared for her family. I’ll miss our banter about movies, theater and music, and your amazing support throughout the years. Rest in peace Mum, we all miss you…you were an amazing Mother and friend. Love you…. Steve

  • Joan, ….Mom….was the epitome of a dedicated Mother. Always there for her kids. Always had an ear available. She took her vocation to the heart max.
    All five of her kids including me feel very fortunate to have had her for a Mother. Owe her a debt of gratitude that can never be repaid. We all have tried to live up to her high standards, knowing her beady eye was there if we strayed…. Love, forever, Mom!

  • I first met Joan at her home with Lee on Farm Island Lake, MN. She was waterskiing and finished by skiing onto the beach. I immediately knew she was awesome! Joan was a wonderful grandma for Zach and was present at his birth. She loved the arts and her excellent theatrical reviews were helpful for Zach as examples of journalistic writing. An excellent chef, I have many of her recipes. She never gave up and did what she could. Even though limited physically toward the end – mentally she remained sharp and cognizant, sense of humor intact. I told her she was the Queen of the family – a title she happily and rightfully embraced. I enjoyed her company, occasional visits to a local pub, our conversations and especially sharing some laughs.
    I love and miss you my Queen.

  • Molly Montgomery
    December 3, 2022 8:47 pm

    Aunt Joan gave me lots of happy memories….fun times at Farm Island Lake, delicious homemade meals, a beautiful sweater she knit me, card games….and I loved her incredible drawings! Aunt Joan was so kind and really funny….what a party they must all be having on the other side… I love you, Aunt Joan.

  • I loved Aunt Joan for many reasons, but her sense of humor cracked me up for years! She had a special relationship with my Daughter Madison, who also loved her completely. Aunt Joan we miss you so much!


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