Joanne Besko

Obituary of Joanne M. Besko

Joanne Besko 71, passed away Saturday, February 4, 2023, at Westchester Medical with her family by her side.

Born in Northampton, Massachusetts on May 28, 1951, she was the daughter of Patricia (Maroney) and William Vachon. She graduated from Easthampton High School in 1969 where she enjoyed playing clarinet and being part of her high school marching band.  Joanne attended a year at Westfield community college, hoping to become a teacher. Later, she earned her associate's degree in Accounting from Dutchess Community College.

Joanne met her first and only love, Dennis Besko while working at a local ice cream shop in Easthampton, MA, known as the “COW”. They married in August 1970 and within that same decade moved to and established their roots in Poughkeepsie, NY. They recently celebrated 52 years of marriage. Joanne worked for many years in the Vending Service industry for ARA and then All Seasons. In the early 90s, with help from Dennis’s brother Tommy who owned Besko Appliance in Easthampton, Joanne and Dennis opened their own Besko Appliance business out of their home in Poughkeepsie, NY. With a lot of hard work and dedication, they had a very successful business that served their local community for the past 30+ years. Fran Farrell was a great help to Dennis and Joanne with their business for many years and was a dear friend to them both.

Joanne’s number one priority in life was always her family. She was selfless and devoted to their well-being on every level. She was modest and the most incredibly loving mom and grandma anyone could dream of. She looked forward to family dinners, movie nights, and lazy summer days at her pool. Joanne absolutely loved playing cards and board games with her family and friends. She was very competitive, a trait which carries on in her children and grandchildren.

Everyone knows Joanne was an incredible hostess and loved having holidays and summer parties over the years. You would always count on a fresh drink in your hand and plenty of home-cooked food. Feeding people was one of her many ways of showing her love to family and close friends. She also made an amazing Thanksgiving feast every year, and her chocolate chip cookies were legendary!

She also had many hobbies such as reading, crocheting, and bowling. She enjoyed many trips to the casinos over the years and was a whiz at Jeopardy and Scrabble.

Joanne absolutely loved being a grandmother. She looked forward to every moment with them and would attend every birthday, milestone, and sporting event she possibly could. She created so many wonderful holiday traditions for her family over the years. 

Joanne was a tried-and-true Boston Red Sox fan and enjoyed watching them play. As a huge football fan, she rooted for the NY Giants most of her life until recent years, when Patrick Mahomes stole her attention, making her a KC Chiefs fan these past several years.

Joanne is survived by her husband, Dennis Besko of Poughkeepsie NY, and her daughter and son-in-law, Heidi Piazza and Brian Piazza of Wappingers Falls, NY. Her daughter-in-law Christia Besko of Poughkeepsie, NY. Her four amazing grandchildren: Kevin Besko, Kiley Besko, Samantha Piazza, and Justin Piazza, and her 3 younger brothers: William Vachon of Scottsdale, AZ, David Vachon, and wife Sharon of Whitman, MA, and Steve Vachon and wife Teri of Longwood, FL. She is also survived by numerous loving aunts, uncles, sister and brother in laws, cousins, nieces, nephews, friends and God children. 

She was predeceased by her parents and her first-born Son, Michael. She always honored Michael’s life, ever boastful of his many successes, from his beautiful family to his athletic, academic, and career achievements. Like his mom, Michael loved his family fiercely, had a competitive spirit and quick wit, and was always there for those who needed him.

Visitation at Timothy Doyle Funeral Home, Poughkeepsie NY on Monday, February 13, 2023, from 5 -8 PM. 

Visitation will also be at Boucher & O’Brien Funeral Home, Easthampton MA on Wednesday, February 15, 2023, from 10:30-1 PM followed by Interment at St. Stanislaus Bishop Cemetery in Easthampton MA.

In lieu of flowers, we request donations may be made in her honor/name to Shriners Children’s Hospital at 516 Carew Street, Springfield, MA 01104