Joyce G. Jonesof Little Rock, AR, 1931 - 2014
JOYCE G. JONES died March 2, 2014 surrounded by her family at Parkway Village, Little Rock, Ark. after a sudden and unexpected illness.
Joyce was born in Akron, Ohio on Feb. 1, 1931 to William A. and Ethel Holch Shoemaker. She, a brother, and sister, were all raised in Akron. However, her parents' decision to move to Wooster, Ohio and open a successful restaurant led to an introduction changing her life.
John P. Jones, a returning World War II army veteran from Ohio stopped into the restaurant with friends for a bite to eat. He left the diner having enjoyed a great meal and having appreciated the Shoemaker's attractive 18 year old daughter who was serving as cashier that day.
May 7, 1950 marked their wedding date and the beginning of their 64 year adventure together. During the early years of their marriage, they moved from Ohio to Nebraska to Mississippi and finally to Fayetteville, Ark. They had three children, Karen, Stephen, and Lynn, as Joyce created their home and John worked on the degrees leading to his career as a University of Arkansas Plant Pathology Professor. Joyce instilled in her children a love of nature, travel and adventure. She worked with John to provide experiences for the family including extensive travel with frequent visits to many National and State Parks, rivers, hiking trails and camping sites, particularly at the Buffalo River.
As her children grew to adulthood, she encouraged John to accept invitations to work with USAID in both Egypt and Morocco. Their seven years in these countries provided opportunities for continued travel for the family all over the world. For the past 10 years they have lived at Parkway Village in Little Rock.
Joyce's most important priority was creating opportunities for her family to enjoy life with each other. A perfect day would be a family canoe trip down the Buffalo or Eleven Point rivers with many sightings of wildlife and birds, a brisk swim, a family meal of favorite dishes and laughter, and an occasional rousing session of lighting fireworks.
She remained an active woman until just days before her death. She loved to travel and had recently attended the races at Oaklawn. Joyce also enjoyed the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra and Repertory Theater, along with Wii Bowling at Parkway Village.
Joyce is survived by her loving and devoted husband, Emeritus Professor John P. Jones of Little Rock, Ark.; and her children, Karen L. Holliday (Ray) of Maumelle, Ark., Stephen P. (Susan) of Little Rock, Ark., and Lynn Withrow-Jones (Cindy) of Alameda, Calif. She leaves behind very special extended family members and friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents; and her brother, Richard Shoemaker and his wife, Marjorie, of Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio.
A small private family service will be held at a later date. The family requests friends and loved ones think of her when seeing a beautiful bird, a breathtaking fireworks display, or an awe inspiring natural vista.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to: Arkansas Baptist Hospice or Arkansas Audubon Society.
The family wishes to express their gratitude to the doctors and nursing staff at UAMS, especially Drs. Azhar and Paydak, and the staffs of Parkway Village Nursing Care Facility and Baptist Hospice for all the care, compassion and support provided to Joyce and her family. Arrangements by Ruebel Funeral Home, www.ruebelfuneralhome.com.
Published March 9, 2014
OBITUARY SUBMITTED BY:
Ruebel Funeral Home
6313 West Markham Street, Little Rock, AR