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  • Writer's pictureKevin Hessel

Joann Elizabeth Cook

Joann Elizabeth Cook passed away peacefully on Monday, November 4th, 2019, in her home in Belvedere, Calif., at the age of 77. She was surrounded by her family.

Joann is survived by her three sons, Michael Cook of Tiburon, Scott Cook of Mill Valley, Christopher Cook of Corte Madera, and their spouses, and eight grandchildren, Kennedy, Mikayla, Caden, Alyssa, Kelsey, Sam, Lucas, and Riley Cook. She is also survived by her two brothers, David and Michael Busch of Michigan.

Joann spent the last ten years with her partner, Robert Birk, who preceded her in death. They enjoyed travel and long lunches at the San Francisco Yacht Club with their friends and family.

Joann was born in Saginaw, Mich., the day after Pearl Harbor was attacked, on December 8th, 1941. Joann moved from the Midwest with her family to the Belvedere/Tiburon area in 1972. She put her teaching career on hold to raise her three young boys. Over the years, Joann was active with Belvedere Nursery School, and was a founding member of The Raccoons auxiliary of Marin General Hospital. She was a lifelong member of the San Francisco Yacht Club, where she enjoyed many friendships. In later years, she became an avid investor in the stock market. She loved travel, family, and endless evenings of laughter outside on her deck enjoying views of the Belvedere Lagoon. Joann opened her doors to all and enjoyed hosting holidays, barbecues, and events at her house. Her mantra was always “the more the merrier.”

A celebration of life will be held on Joann’s birthday, December 8th. Details to come. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in her name to The American Stroke Foundation at

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