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Joan Cresap, 86, Rye Registered Nurse

RYE, N.Y. – Joan Wilmarth Cresap, a resident of Rye for more than 40 years, died May 8 at Greenwich Hospital, surrounded by family. She was 86.

Born April 23, 1926 in Brooklyn, N.Y., she was the daughter of Helen Dorothy Weck and Frank White Wilmarth. She grew up in Larchmont, singing in the glee club and playing the clarinet. Her family worked in a surgical instruments company, founded in Brooklyn by her maternal grandfather, Edward Weck.

After graduating from Mamaroneck High School in 1944, she attended Connecticut College for Women, earning a bachelor's of science in chemistry in 1948. After college, she attended Yale Nursing School, where she received an MSN in 1952.

In July of 1956, she married Charles Nash Cresap, a chemical engineer. They lived in Scarsdale for seven years before moving to Pawling in 1963. After they divorced in 1970, Cresap moved to Rye as a single parent.

Cresap worked as a registered nurse for Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, Rye Psychiatric Hospital Center, J.C. Penney Occupational Health Center and High Point Hospital in Port Chester.

She was a member of a number of local organizations, including the 25th Twig of United Hospital and the White Plains Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. Cresap joined Rye Presbyterian Church in 1970 and taught Sunday school there.

She enjoyed traveling in Europe with her cousins and family vacations at her home in Harwichport in Cape Cod, Mass. An expert bridge player, she enjoyed gourmet cooking, reading, stitching, Big Band music and animals.

Cresap is survived by three daughters, Nancy Higbee, of Greenwich, Callie (Patrick) O'Malley, of Summit, N.J., and Joan M. Cresap, with whom she resided, of Rye; a son, Frank (Brenda) Cresap, of Ladera Ranch, Calif.; and eight grandchildren.

Visiting hours are 4-7 p.m. Friday at Graham Funeral Home in Rye. There will be a memorial service at 10:30 a.m. Saturday at Rye Presbyterian Church. Burial will follow in the church columbarium.

Memorial donations may be made to Rye Presbyterian Church Music Memorial Fund or the Frank and Helen Wilmarth Memorial Scholarship at Mamaroneck High School.

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