Joan Hintenach

First post: Jul 9, 2022 Latest post: Jul 18, 2022
On June 23, 2022, Joan suffered an ischemic stroke due to a blood clot that had made its way to her brain. Joan was already in the hospital recovering from an infection in her knee, so thankfully doctors were able to address the stroke quickly. But subsequent imaging revealed she had remaining clots dangerously floating in her brain and lungs. The only solution was a high-risk surgery to remove them, which the doctors moved quickly to get done as soon as she was cleared. Against all odds—although perhaps not quite if you know Joan and her tenacity—she survived the surgery. The doctors were able to clear the clots and repair a hole they discovered in her heart. However even still, the stroke left Joan’s entire left side paralyzed.


With great relief, we can report than Joan is now stable, recovering and making strides every day. Starting July 8th, 2022, she will move to inpatient rehab and begin the hard work to return to her normal life—one that has always been and will continue to be focused on her family and friends. 


Joan is a treasured friend, colleague, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. Born in Erie, Pennsylvania in April of 1949, Joan moved to work in Washington D.C., where she met her ex-husband, Bob Lee, with whom she had all three of her children and now shares a dear friendship. Joan settled in Alabama, raising her family and establishing a successful career in teaching, first focusing on children with special needs, then moving into early education. Her role as a teacher is her passion; anyone who knows Joan knows she’s not happy away from her work. She has long considered her colleagues, students and their families at Odyssey Early Schools her extended family. 


While it will no doubt be a challenging road to recovery, Joan is excited to get to work. And her vision of the finish line is clear: She’ll be walking into her classroom to teach, as she always has. 


Here on Joan’s CaringBridge site, we will share progress of her recovery journey, as well as share your messages with Joan. If you feel moved to do so, you can donate to Joan’s GoFundMe to help cover the high financial cost of the life-saving work she has already undergone as well as the upcoming long-term rehab work she will undergo to achieve her goal. The link to her GoFundMe is located in the Ways to Help section on the above menu.



On behalf of Joan, we, her family, sincerely appreciate your support.





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