On August 14, 2014, Joyce A. Kelley passed away, 5 months after being diagnosed with late stage cancer. Joyce spent the last months of her life in the care and company of her loved ones at the home of her son, Steven Kelley, in Seneca Falls.
Joyce was born on January 8, 1942 to John L. Kelley and Anna Kowalik Kelley. A life-long resident of Seneca Falls, she graduated from St. Patrick’s school in 1955 and from Mynderse Academy in 1959.
Joyce was always a strong and matter of fact woman, a hard worker, supportive friend, and an artist with an oven.
She spent most of her life in a kitchen – learning how to cook at a young age from her grandmother. Joyce had a passion for cooking and food. She spent years as a cook and a waitress at many local establishments to include: Willows Restaurant, Dottie’s Tavern, Connie’s Diner, J.R.’s Party House, and Silver Creek. Joyce spent 11 years as a cook for Delta Chi fraternity at Hobart. She cooked for countless events – from catering family holiday meals to fundraisers to elaborate parties for foreign diplomats. After 3 years as a cook for the Seneca County Jail, Joyce then spent 17 years as a corrections officer before retiring in June of 2007.
Joyce has been described by friends, family and inmates alike as comforting, supportive and reassuring. A good listener, but not one who would encourage you to wallow in your troubles too long; she was the type that helped to lay problems out in an actionable way.
Joyce leaves behind lasting memories of overflowing holiday cookie trays, elaborate birthday cakes, and one very famous cowbell, with which she cheered exuberantly at countless sporting events in support of her children and grandchildren. She was also a die-hard fan of both the Yankees and the Buffalo Bills and an avid reader.
Joyce is survived by her only brother Francis (Karen) Kelley, her oldest son, Steven Kelley and his family — his wife Karen Kelley; children – Shannon Kelley (William Dailey), Sheena (Eric) Rinkle, Sheavon Kelley and Matthew (Amanda) Kelley; and two great-grandsons – Riley Kelley and Sidney Rinkle. Joyce also left behind her youngest son, Paul (Cristi) Kelley and his two children–Zachary and Madigan).
Joyce’s family would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to the many caring professionals who provided medical expertise, emotional support, and friendship over the last five months, on and off the clock. Though too numerous to mention, you each made a meaningful difference and your efforts are greatly appreciated.
A public funeral mass for Joyce will be held on Friday August 22nd at 1p.m. at Saint Patrick’s Church in Seneca Falls. Burial will follow at Saint Columbkille Cemetery.
Arrangements are under the direction of Doran Funeral Home, Seneca Falls.
Please visit: doranfuneralhome.com