In Loving Memory of Anne Marie Noonan Ganser

September 26, 1932
Port Chester, NY
June 04, 2020
Stratford, CT
Funeral Home

Spear-Miller Funeral Home

39 South Benson Road,
Fairfield CT US 06824


Service Date and Location TBA


Family Gathering


Harvest Hills Animal Shelter in Fryeburg, Maine

Anne Marie Noonan Ganser

Anne Marie Noonan Ganser, born in Port Chester, NY on September 26, 1932, died peacefully in her sleep at home in Stratford, CT on June 4th 2020. She was 87 years old.

Anne Marie, the only child born to Anne (nee Costello) and William Noonan, attended elementary school at Our Lady of Mercy in Port Chester, NY, high school at Academy of Our Lady of Good Counsel in White Plains, and earned her BA at Indiana University in Bloomington. Anne went on to earn two educational related master’s degrees which added to her outstanding teaching and counseling skills as her professional career evolved.

Anne Marie spoke often of her early years in Port Chester where she vividly remembered playing kick the can on Parker Street, buying hand-made penny candy from a neighbor, listening to The Shadow on the radio, riding the trolley to Rye Beach, and harmonizing with her relatives around the piano after every Sunday supper. She also spoke of how unemployed men would come to the back door of her family’s home looking for work and her father, Bill, a steamfitter by trade would give them a simple job to do and then something to eat. Anne Marie’s mother, Anne, was a gentle soul and much beloved elementary school teacher at Our Lady of Mercy. She also played the piano at school functions and family gatherings, and once during Prohibition with her friend Kathleen Balls riding shotgun, smuggled two bottles of Canadian whiskey well hidden in the trunk of her car driving the final 25 miles home on the steel rim of one of the wheels after a blowout, not understanding the metallic grinding sound chasing the car, nor the odd way the car was pulling hard to the left. They, and the whisky, made it safely home to husband Bill and daughter Anne Marie.

Anne married Jim Ganser in 1955 and with him settled in Northern Virginia. The marriage produced four sons: L.J., Terry, Greg, and Chris. The couple separated in 1976 and divorced in the mid-eighties.

Anne Marie’s teaching career began in Virginia where she taught at Gunston Hall, Marshall Road and Woodburn Elementary Schools. In 1968 the family moved to Rye, New York. She resumed her teaching career at Our Lady of Mercy where she would work for 13 years. Anne moved to Washington, D.C. to resume teaching in the Fairfax County Public Schools system. She took an apartment in the North East section of the city and reverse-commuted every weekday from there to teach, and later serve as a guidance counselor, at Terra Centre Elementary School in Burke, Virginia. Anne loved living in D.C., especially since it was located a mere stone’s throw from the Eastern Market where each weekend she would visit and socialize with the antiques and food vendors there, accumulating not only new friends, but unique collectibles and tasty edibles which continued to be a lifetime fascination for her.

In 1973 she purchased a small house in the woods of Bridgton, Maine, located in the southwestern “lake region” of the state. Anne had always had a deep love for Maine, from the chilly coastal waters of the Atlantic to the foothills of the White Mountains in the west. She spent every summer, and as many holidays as she could, at the little house in the woods where not surprisingly, she made many friends. Bridgton provided an excellent opportunity for her children and grandchildren to explore the many outdoor and cultural activities the area provided.

Anne also loved to travel. With her friends she explored France, Italy, Ireland, Germany, Japan, the Czech Republic and large swaths of the US. She enjoyed old school Broadway musicals, long distance driving, her series of faithful dog companions (Bert, Ted, Willy, and Ginty), oysters on the half shell chased with a pint of Guinness, cooking shows, playing Hearts, Jeopardy, and any movie starring Cary Grant. She loved to send personalized holiday cards and gave generous presents to all the members of her family on both birthdays and at Christmas time.

Blessed with an effervescent and magnetic personality, perhaps Anne’s greatest talent was her innate ability to create and nourish the many long-lived friendships she discovered during her life’s journey, most notably with Maureen Kelley-O’Brien, who she met in kindergarten and remained close with for her entire life. In addition to her four sons, Anne Marie is survived by six grandchildren; TJ, Elyssa, Jenna, Ava, Lily and Georgia.

In lieu of flowers donations may be sent to Harvest Hills Animal Shelter in Fryeburg, Maine. The website with information on donations is

A celebration of her life will be held September 26, 2020 which would have been her 88th birthday (details as to time and place forthcoming). No doubt a piano and singing will be a big part of that celebration Godspeed to Anne Marie. She will be sorely missed. For information or to sign an online register, please visit

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5 Guestbook Entries for Anne Marie Noonan Ganser

  1. I enjoyed my friendship with Anne over the last 15 years. I was saddened by her deteriorating heath these past 4 or 5 years. She was a great lady. My deepest sympathy to “her boys” and all of her family.

  2. Anne’s legacy of love, wit, wisdom & great sense of humor will live on in her boys, her extended family & her friends. She was a joy to know & memories of her warmth & welcome will always be in our hearts. Our prayers are with you all & with Anne, who is surely up there at peace, regaling those around her with her joy & laughter.

  3. We will always remember Anne Marie’s beautiful smile and infectious laugh! She was a ray of sunshine and had a wonderful way of making us feel like she was absolutely thrilled to see us. Such a bright, bubbly, gregarious lady who had a fabulous sense of humor. We will carry her in our hearts and remember her always with love. So very sorry for your loss, Greg, Terry, Chris, L.J., and all your family. Sending much love and big hugs.

  4. Anne has been a dear friend since our college days. And since college, a group of our sorority sisters has gotten together every two years and Anne Marie was always the life of the party. I have met each one of her boys and send them my sympathy. Greg has always been like one of our own for Eric and me! I shall miss Anne’s happy smile and her wonderful sense of humor. I loved her like a sister.