Joyce Johnson, passed away on December 14, 2018, at the age of 85 years.
Raised in New York Mills and Minneapolis, Minnesota, Joyce first attended dental hygienist school then later earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Minnesota. While raising three young children, she graduated from the University of Maryland University College, with a degree in Sociology.
Joyce worked for the U. S. Department of Labor for 30 years in varying positions completing her tenure as a Policy Developer. Over those years, she was instrumental in the delivery of many labor policies you may know today, such as FMLA.
Joyce’s family heritage meant much to her. Her Finnish family was always on her mind. As a child, she lived a time with her Finnish grandparents who spoke only Finnish in the house. She carried on her love of the language throughout her life and continued to take Finnish language classes well into her seventies.
This love of her family heritage also fed into her love of travel. She met her husband Albert while she was traveling abroad after she graduated college. Over the years, Joyce traveled to Finland several times, took a train across Canada, and drove to nearly every state in the continental United States.
Joyce grew up with a love for reading and thirst for education. So much so, that she funded educational opportunities for many and spent her retirement years teaching English to non-English speakers. She also thoroughly enjoyed several book clubs over the years.
Joyce leaves behind a loving family. Her son, Matthew Johnson of Virginia and his son, Michael of New Jersey, her son, Mitchell Johnson and wife, Dawn Savitski along with their two daughters, Alexis and Mallory of Fairfax, Virginia, and her daughter, Caryn Morgan and husband, John Kliner of Colorado Springs.
Joyce was preceded in death by her husband, Al Johnson, a former voice of The Breakfast Show for the Voice of America, and her sister, Barbara Edstrom who is survived by her children, Danny Edstrom, Joyce McCormick, and Suzanne Elwell.
Toward the end of her life Joyce fought against dementia and cancer, yet, until the end she was true to herself and an incredibly strong woman.
A Celebration of Joyce’ s life will be held at 10 am, on Saturday, December 22, 2018 at the Fairfax Memorial Funeral Home, 9902 Braddock Road, Fairfax, VA 22032.
Joyce will be interred in Minnesota and a second memorial service will be held in New York Mills, MN in the Spring.
Memorial donations in memory of Joyce can be made to the Literacy or Educational foundation of your choosing.