Hearts Love 10

Joyce M. (Downer) Brahn

October 2, 1938 ~ May 30, 2021 (age 82)




October 2, 1938-May 30, 2021


Joyce M. Brahn (nee Downer) age 82 and native Staten Islander, joined Our Lord and Savior on May 30, 2021. She was born on October 2, 1938 to the late George Downer and former Julia Downer (nee Burgess). In 1961, she married Kenneth Brahn. Their union, lasting until his death in 2009, saw the birth of their daughter, Leah Mezzacappa (nee Brahn). Mrs. Brahn was a resident of Travis for more than forty-four years until her recent move to New Jersey to reside with her daughter.


Affectionately known as Cookie since her early youth, her gregarious personality enabled her to befriend many people throughout her life. From a pharmacy clerk and deli store manager in her early twenties to an office manager in two auto body repair shops, her multi-faceted career culminated in holding several positions at the West Shore Inn in Travis. Hostess, Server, Bartender, Manager, her 40 year plus service to the restaurant gave her an iconic status. Customers may not have always known who the owners were, but they invariably knew who Cookie was and always looked for her! Her formative years included attendance at Curtis High School.


If you didn't catch her at the restaurant during the 4th of July parade, she was bound to be cheering on parade participants in front of her award-winning front house/yard displays featured in The Staten Island Advance. She was legend for expressing her holiday spirit with various eye-catching decorative displays from Easter through Christmas. She had a special creative touch with her arts and crafts no matter the project. The West Shore Inn benefitted from her special skills when it came to decorating for each of the holidays.


If you needed a helping hand, Cookie was your go-to person. She was Always there for her family and friends. Whether her favorite Uncles Cliff and Walter or sister Emma needed extra attention, Cookie embraced their special needs and took them under her wing. She was devoted to her daughter whom she considered her best friend, and her grandson who held a very special place in her heart. She and her sister Lee held a unique bond all their lives even though separated by many miles and states for the last 29 years. She will be sorely missed by her family, friends, co-workers and customers for she brought a warm and happy feeling to all those whose lives she touched.


Cookie is survived by her daughter Leah Mezzacappa (partner TJ Meagher), grandson Vincenzo Mezzacappa, Sister Lee Ambrosino (partner Ray Schmidt), former son-in-law Vinnie Mezzacappa and sister-in-law Barbara Manzella (Joseph). She is also survived by several nieces, nephews and cousins of whom she held a special affection. Her endearing cat Calie was her close companion for many years.


She is preceded in death by her husband Kenneth Brahn, parents George Downer, Julia Ambrosino, step-father William Ambrosino, brothers George Downer (Marilyn), Roger Downer (Clair, Betty), and sister Emma Stalter. Cookie is also predeceased by her paternal and maternal grandparents as well as all of her paternal and maternal aunts and uncles.


My Hero...My World... My Strength...My Best Friend...My Love...My Everything...My MOM


A Funeral Mass will be held at St. Anthony of Padua Roman Catholic Church (4055 Victory Blvd. S.I.) on July 17th at Noon. Burial of the cremated ashes will take place at a later date.


Memorial donations may be given to www.ascpa.org, www.stjude.org, www.stateni slandhopeanimalrescue.org or your favorite charity. Thank you!

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Joyce M. (Downer) Brahn, please visit our floral store.


Memorial Mass
July 17, 2021

12:00 PM
St Anthony of Padua
4055 Victory Blvd
Staten Island, NY 10314

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