Bus death teacher gave vulnerable a voice

Joan Behar.
Joan Behar.

Further tributes have been paid to an “inspirational” teacher who tragically died following a collision with a bus in Lancaster.

Joan Behar, 67, died from head injuries three days after the collision in North Road on March 4.

Police are still appealing for witnesses to come forward.

Joan was born in America and grew up there before coming to Lancaster.

She was a lecturer in the University of Central Lancashire’s School of Social Work,

Her friend Andy Neale said: “In a word, Joan was nothing less than an inspiration.

“To all she met, to all she came across and to all who even heard about her. She was the sort of lady who would brighten up the day of a shop cashier – simply by being herself in that 10-second exchange.

The Reading the World work she did, the movement she started and led, comprised of reaching out to community groups often marginalised by mainstream society.

“She was passionate about giving the vulnerable a voice, about helping them gain the confidence to write.

“She reached out to the homeless, to members of the LGBT communities, to victims of abuse and to adults in recovery as well as ex-offenders and the disabled.

“She treated every single person with the utmost respect, and led her life with so much enthusiasm.

“She cycled everywhere, her health was enviable.

“She detested the big brands, the corporations, and any superior being which crushes creativity or discourages individualism.”

Her funeral has yet to be organised, but a sending off ceremony is due to be arranged.