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Joan’s Joy Mission

The Joan Angela D’Alessandro Foundation honors the memory of 7-year old Girl Scout Joan. The Foundation promotes child safety via programs we provide and legislation we advocate. In addition, we provide support to neglected and abused children through fun and educational excursions; and we help victims of crime by way of consultation. Joan’s story has brought hope through awareness and prevention. The lives of thousands will continue to benefit from the impact of her legacy.





Joan Angela D’Alessandro

September 7, 1965­ - April 19, 1973 

Joan was a loving and brave little girl who was full of life and would stand up for others. She was a spunky, caring and balanced child who liked daffodils, dogs, dancing, whistling, and high diving. Her special colors were green and orange. She joked around and enjoyed the piano and her favorite song, "Ode to Joy.” She was proud to be a Girl Scout Brownie.

While delivering cookies on Holy Thursday of 1973, Joan became the victim of a heinous crime at the hands of a neighbor who lived three houses away.

Concerned communities, those who searched for her and the nation learned of her fate on Easter Sunday. With this loss of innocence, society’s emphasis on child safety changed overnight

Joan’s neighbor was convicted of murder in the first degree and sentenced to life imprisonment, but he was eligible for parole after serving only 14 years. 

This tragedy and injustice sparked a movement of positive change that was led by Joan’s mother, Rosemarie. It began in Hillsdale to protect children and keep them safe. Joan will always be remembered for inspiring the passage of laws that ensure victims’ rights and keep child predators behind bars without parole. 

Joan’s Law, NJ - April 3, 1997

Joan’s Law, Federal - October 30, 1998

Justice for Victims Law, NJ - November 17, 2000

Joan’s Law, NY - September 15, 2004

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It was in April 2006, the second time that Joan’s mom visited the site where Joan had been left in Harriman State Park, NY, that she saw a white butterfly. It was fluttering behind the split boulder in which Joan was found. Since then, the white butterfly has become a sign of Joan’s joyful and free spirit, giving many a sense of hope, love and peace. 

Joan’s legacy protects all children in the United States and brings awareness to child safety and protection forever.

Dedicated on April 3, 2014


 
 
 


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