Lois E. Joyce

FALMOUTH – Lois E. Joyce, a resident at Falmouth by the Sea, and a prior long-term resident of The Landing in Cape Elizabeth, died on May 14, 2020, after a period of declining health. She came into this world just after the 1918 flu pandemic, and ultimately succumbed to the current one (COVID-19). Lois was just shy of 100 years old.Born on July 9, 1920 in Crawford, to Hazel Perry Archer and Victor Archer, Lois was one of eight children. The family farm, on the “Airline” in Washington County, grew blueberries and vegetables. She would often say that those blueberries were the secret source of her strength and longevity. After her primary school education in a one-room schoolhouse in Crawford, Lois moved to Woodland to care for her ailing grandmother, attending Woodland High School at the same time. She was crowned “Miss Woodland” of 1938, confirming a natural beauty and charm that proved timeless throughout her long life.In 1941, she departed for the big city of Portland. She worked for the Navy Department during World War II, both on Exchange St. and at Naval Headquarters on Long Island in Casco Bay. After the war, she was courted by an Army Air Corps veteran who had returned to his Munjoy Hill roots after wartime service with the Eighth Air Force in England. She married Joseph W. Joyce on Sept. 10, 1947 at the Cathedral Church in Portland. Joe’s parents, Michael and Nora, like many Irish immigrants on the Hill then, were notable in shipping and banking, respectively, although no dowry was conveyed.Settling initially in Portland, Lois and Joe welcomed three children over a six-year period, each of whom were perfect kids by her account (and who are we to disagree!). Lois’s life soon turned to adventure as her husband’s career with GMAC led them relocations inclusive of six states and 19 different homes. Always the supportive spouse and caring mother, she managed those moves with grace and positivity – additional traits that proved timeless. With every move, she nurtured her husband and children, while navigating a recurring moving box conundrum (what to unpack versus what to save for the next stop). Rarely was the family in a home longer than two years, while one year featured three relocations. And whether in Maine, New Hampshire, Upstate New York, Long Island, Connecticut, Massachusetts, or New Jersey, she made friends easily. There was always a bit of mischief in her smile – and when a musical interlude was necessary, Lois’ choices were always “on the nose.”Although related data is currently unavailable, the family is convinced that Lois is responsible for the majority of Talbot’s profits. Lois was forever stylish.She lost her husband prematurely to cancer in 1980, and returned to Maine, first settling in Falmouth and later Cape Elizabeth. During her time as a mother and grandmother to three children and five grandchildren, she was a dependable nurse, nanny and counselor as each newborn joined the family. She used her well-practiced skills to sooth babies and older siblings, not to mention their new parents.Hobbies included golf in later life; candlestick bowling (she earned most improved at the Big 20 two years in a row!); and knitting, where no new family addition went without a special present. She enjoyed winter travel to Florida, California and Hawaii, and an extended European vacation. Deep down, she remained resilient farm girl from Downeast, even in her late eighties, when she thought nothing of driving herself to Machias to visit family. Lois was a member of what many call the “greatest generation” – one that weathered the great depression, a great war and some of the greatest changes the world has seen. True to form, and further informed by her Washington County upbringing, Lois handled all of it – and the many moves, and the early death of her husband, and even the coronavirus – with grace, humility, and quiet strength. This world could use a lot more people like Lois right now. Reflecting her sunny disposition, when faced with a challenge, she would generally grin and say, “This too shall pass”! She approved of her family’s decision to note her life-long optimism (and wicked sense of humor) by including that saying on her head stone.Lois is survived by her three children, Ron and wife, Tari, of Yarmouth, Pamela, of Petaluma, Calif., and Nancy Strout and her husband, Frank, of Cape Elizabeth; plus her grandchildren, Kevin, Chris and Todd Joyce and their spouses; and Jamie Strout Garten and Taylor Strout, and their spouses. Together, her grandchildren and their impressive spouses have produced 11 great-grandchildren (each capable of their matriarch’s mischief). The family would like to thank Nancy Strout, Lois’ daughter, for the special care and attention she provided to Lois. For all of Lois’s life as a widow – representing more than 40 years – Nancy exhibited the same selfless support for her mother that she learned from her, helping Lois maintain the signature optimism that truly set her apart. The Joyce and Strout families, and Lois, would also like to thank the many caregivers that supported Lois later in life. This includes the staff at The Landing, who made Lois’ 10-year residency a truly satisfying one. After relocating to Falmouth by the Sea last August, she benefitted from the equally empathetic and thoughtful attention of in-house staff and Hospice representatives. We salute these staff members, and caregivers across the Nation, who continue to be courageous, professional, and caring, even in the face of extreme health challenges. Your efforts mean so much to so many.Funeral services are being provided by Jones, Rich and Barnes in Portland. There will be no public viewing. A private moment of affection will be held later, when allowed, for family and long-time friends. Lois will be interred at the New Calvary Cemetery in South Portland, reunited with her beloved husband.Those wishing to remember Lois and share memories, please visit http://www.jonesrichandbarnes.com or by making a memorial gift to Hospice of Southern Maine180 US Route 1Scarborough, ME 04074

Guest Book