Joan Storey (Malatesta)

Formerly of Arlington, MA and Nashua, NH, died on July 3, 2018, after a long and courageous battle with a neurodegenerative disease. She was 66.

Raised in Arlington, Joan graduated from Arlington High School and received a B.A. from Trinity College in Hartford, where she was a member of the college’s first class of women. While at Trinity she spent a semester abroad in Paris and became fluent in French. She was an assistant buyer at Jordan Marsh for several years and then did a lengthy stint as a singing waitress and eventual music director for a dinner theater on the North Shore. She returned to retailing and rose to become the National Director of Regional Sales for Hanes Brands. While Joan possessed a keen mind for business, her true passion was performing on the stage and singing (almost anywhere!) Starting in high school and continuing in community theaters across Massachusetts and New Hampshire, she performed the lead female role in countless musicals including : Yum Yum in The Mikado, Maria in West Side Story, Anna in The King and I, and Dolly in Hello Dolly. In 2008 she won a New Hampshire Theater Award. Few who heard her soaring soprano voice could ever forget it.

Joan will be remembered for her vivacious personality, her sense of humor, her kindness and compassion for others, her infectious laugh, her quick and sharp mind, her creativity, her enthusiasm for travel, and her love of family. The light of her life was her daughter, Alexandra Socha, who inherited her mother’s amazing voice and love for the theater. Joan was an incredibly devoted and supportive mother, and watching Alexandra succeed as an actress and singer on Broadway was a source of great joy and pride for her.

Joan is predeceased by her parents, Richard and Geraldine Malatesta. In addition to her daughter Alexandra (with former husband Thad Socha) of New York City, Joan is survived and will always be loved by her sister Phyllis Meade and husband Jeffrey of Acton; her sister Jan Penney and husband Bruce of Arlington; her brother Steven Malatesta of Billerica; and 7 nieces and nephews, who were all very important to her. Thank you to the many wonderful caregivers who helped “Joanni” in her final years–you know who you are–and especially thanks to Eli. Donations in Joan’s memory may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association: or 800-272-3900. A memorial service is planned for the fall.