Joan Trantham

May 9, 2023

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Joan Trantham


Joan Trantham passed peacefully at Crystal Springs Adult Care Home in Portland, Oregon on May 9, 2023, from natural causes. She was 90 years old.
Joan was born to Louis and Cleo Nelson in 1933 in Portland, Oregon. Her early childhood was spent in Northeast Portland, and was shared with her older siblings, Marion Berglund and Ed Nelson. She graduated from Jefferson High School and was known to have played the violin briefly.

Portland was where she was raised and chose to live most of her life. She met her first husband, Jerome Anderson in Portland. Together they had three children: Jerilyn, Jacqueline, and Jeffrey. Joan was a homemaker during most of this time in her life. She encouraged her children’s interests, maintained a well-run and ordered home, and was a Girl Scout leader during this time. They later divorced after the children were grown.

Portland is where Joan discovered her second career as a medical assistant with Kaiser Permanente. She retired from Kaiser after 20 years of service.
Portland was also where she met and later married her lifelong friend, Alvin Trantham. They were married for 11 years and built a home together in Pine Hollow, Oregon. Together they were active members of the American Legion, and Veterans of Foreign Wars organizations. Their time together was cut short when Al passed away at an early age.

Joan returned to Milwaukie, Oregon and spent the remainder of her life there near friends and family. She enjoyed dancing with friends at the Elks Lodge, travel, Bingo at the Senior Center, and collecting jewelry. She will be remembered for her sense of humor, her stylish nature, and being a best friend to many.

Joan is survived by her children and their spouses: Jerilyn and Leland McClain, Gary and Jacqueline Kelner, and Jeffrey Anderson. She is also survived by her niece and her husband: Christine and Dave Rider.

The family sincerely thanks Millie and Paul Megherea, the owners of Crystal Springs Adult Care home who provided excellent care to Joan for the past few years. The family also thanks her primary care physician Dr. Brenda Shim, and Kaiser Permanente Hospice for their expertise and caring support.

No services will be held at Joan’s request, and in keeping with her shy and unobtrusive personality. She is to be interned at Willamette National Cemetery.