Rutland Mourns Loss of Joan Wing

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(Host) Rutland is mourning the loss of a life-long resident and prominent attorney known for her great sense of humor. Joan Wing died in a car accident yesterday morning on Route 7 in Ferrisburgh. She was 61.   

VPR’s Nina Keck has more.

(Keck) Rutland attorney Terry Corsonnes says word of Joan Wing’s death traveled quickly through the legal community.  

(Corsonnes) "Universally the reaction is just complete and utter sadness. Because we’re all going to miss her so badly."

(Keck) Joan Wing was born in Rutland to a family of prominent local attorneys and military men. Both her father and grandfather were generals and Leonard Wing Senior commanded the 43rd Infantry Division during World War Two.  

(Flory) "I think her dad had given her a real deep respect for the law. And she was always incredibly proud of her grandfather and his military heritage."

(Keck) That’s Rutland attorney Peg Flory. She and Joan Wing met in the 7th grade and the two remained close friends ever since. Both became lawyers somewhat unusually – not by going to law school, but by apprenticing or reading for the bar. Joan Wing talked about that in an interview with VPR several years ago.

(Wing) "I’m kind of proud that I didn’t. It’s kind of a pervercity that amuses me – when people ask. The only diploma I have is from high school."     

(Keck) As a lawyer, Wing became involved with a number of legal organizations. She helped develop a mentoring program for new attorneys and served as president of the Vermont State Bar Association. Terry Corsonnes says whatever Joan Wing did, she did 110 percent.

(Corsonnes) "She headed up the law day – mock trail presentations that we did for area grade school kids. She was involved in the Rutland city police commission, active in the Vermont professional conduct board. She just gave herself 110 percent and enjoyed it. Everything she did with great humor and great dedication."

(Keck) After many years as a trial attorney, Joan Wing shifted her career to mediation. Her friend and fellow attorney Peg Flory says Wing’s intellect, pragmatism and people skills made her ideally suited for the job

(Flory) "She could make anyone feel comfortable – whether it was the governor, the bishop or the homeless on the street – Joanie delt with them all the same way. And she could make all of them feel comfortable. It was a gift."

(Keck) Joan Wing died Tuesday – she was 61.

For VPR news, I’m Nina Keck in Rutland.

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