Joan Wargo Schroder

Obituary of Joan Wargo Schroder

September 16, 1936 - May 29, 2016

Joan Wargo Schroder, 79, of DeWitt, NY, passed away suddenly at home on Sunday, May 29, 2016. Born in Canton, Ohio to the late John and Grace Wargo, she was a graduate of Central Catholic High School, and a proud and active alumna of Trinity College Class of 1958 in Washington, D.C.

Initially working as a substitute teacher at J-D High School, she pursued her passion for serving others and teaching English full time at Holy Cross School in DeWitt in 1980 as her youngest of her nine children entered kindergarten there. Most impressively, she simultaneously completed her master’s degree in Instructional Design, Development and Evaluation from Syracuse University in 1984. She went on to work for the Syracuse Red Cross after teaching. Joan loved DeWitt, proudly serving 16 years as an elected town councilwoman from 1992 to 2008.

Joan’s marriage and life with her late husband Cortland Schroder was exciting, fulfilling, and most of all – fun for 47 years. Always supporting her children, she presided over the Parent Teacher Association at Holy Cross, was Co-President of the DeWitt Swim Club, was a member of the Holy Cross Parish Council, and actively officiated decades of local swim meets. Joan loved to travel and could be found joyfully singing and dancing as we celebrated her children’s graduations, weddings and grandchildren’s baptisms, First Communions and birthdays.

She is predeceased by her husband, her parents, and her younger sister, Elizabeth Wargo Gilhooly. She is survived by her nine children, Eleanor Kelly (Patrick) of Newark, DE, Elizabeth Schroder (Michael Ward) of Wilton, CT, PJ Vaughan of DeWitt, NY, Cortland Jr. ‘Chip’ and Jean Schroder of Manlius, NY, Susan Schroder of Wilton, CT, John Schroder of Alexandria, VA, David and Kathryn Schroder of Lutherville, MD, Meg (Dan) Nolan of Yardley, PA and Paul and Nina Schroder of Richmond, VA; as well as her 26 beautiful grandchildren.

Joan lived a storybook life together with her family and friends and has now gone home to be with the Lord.

Viewing hours will be 2-4 PM and 6-8 PM Thursday at the Fairchild & Meech DeWitt Chapel, 3690 Erie Blvd East, DeWitt, NY 13214. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held Friday at 11 AM at Holy Cross Church, 4112 E. Genesee Street, DeWitt, NY 13214.

Donations, in lieu of flowers, may be sent to The Michael J. Fox Foundation ( or to Francis House (