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Joyce Pickarts

JOYCE N. PICKARTS (nee DeHaven) age 85, beloved wife of the late Raymond; loving mother of James (wife Kelly) and Jeanne Nally (husband James); devoted grandmother of Melissa Reighard (husband David), Danielle Leppla (fiancé Lenny Taylor), Lindsay Adkins (husband Brian), Lisa Leppla, and John Fink, and great-grandmother of Jack, Griffin, Myla, Liana, Lexi, and Gabrielle; cherished daughter of Doster and Edith (nee Heath) DeHaven; dearest sister of Ardith Thomas (husband John) and the late Doster DeHaven (wife Lea); dear aunt and great-aunt of many. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in memory of Joyce to the Alzheimer’s Association, P.O. Box 74924, Cleveland, Ohio, 44194.

Joyce Nanette Pickarts was born on February 11, 1933, in Madison, Wisconsin to Doc (Doster) and Edith DeHaven. The second of three children, Joyce had an older brother Doc Jr. and a younger sister Ardith (Thomas). Joyce was a “Great Depression” baby and told stories of having very little and using a dresser drawer as a crib. Joyce fell in love with Ray Pickarts after a chance meeting at a dance for Madison High Schools located at the “Loft”. They began dating and were married at the young ages of 18 and 20. Joyce and Ray welcomed their first child, James, in 1952, followed by a precious daughter, Jeanne, in 1954. During this time, Joyce also worked at a drug store, and then moved on to working in a department store where she soon became the buyer and manager for the Men’s Department. She was an excellent retailer. Family was everything for Joyce and Ray. They were very involved in the schools and with helping their parents with anything that was asked. Joyce was a beloved aunt and godmother. She never missed an opportunity to support and rally around her nieces and nephews! Ray and Joyce did everything together. Ray enjoyed playing softball until almost fifty years of age and Joyce was his biggest cheerleader. As mentioned previously, both Ray and Joyce dedicated much of their time to the schools. Joyce even switched jobs to work in food service at LaFollette High School in order to better accommodate the schedules of her two children. She cooked many meals for Jeanne, Jim and their fellow teammates and friends in their home, and hosted large gatherings, boy and girl scout meetings and other memorable events.

Joyce comes from a very musical family and has a lovely voice herself. She often listened to music to pass the day away, a hobby that sustained her even in her final days. Joyce’s father and brother were excellent musicians very well known in the City of Madison. Joyce and Ray loved to dance and travel around to hear them play at a variety of venues. They also enjoyed attending University of Wisconsin football games and were avid Green Bay Packer fans. Joyce and Ray became very involved in the Elks Association. Joyce was president of the Ladies Elks. Joyce was very organized and paid close attention to detail, making her an excellent manager. She loved people and enjoyed socializing alongside Ray. Joyce kept a spotless home and went to the beauty shop every Thursday like religion. Fridays and Saturdays they were out and about!

Joyce has four granddaughters, Melissa, Danielle, Lindsay and Lisa, and a grandson John. She has six beautiful great-grandchildren. All will carry her legacy of love and laughter with them forever. Both she and Ray never hesitated to travel 500 miles for birthdays and Christmas each year, and brought a carload of presents and treats for all. She treasured her grandchildren and showed pictures of them to everyone she met. The granddaughters looked forward to every visit months in advance, and also eagerly awaited the many care packages “Nana” sent in the mail for special events. Joyce was also known as the family dog whisperer. All of her children and grandchildren’s dogs loved Joyce more than anyone. She loved her little poodle Renee, but she was also the favorite of all the family pets.

In the end, in the most painful of times Joyce was referred to lovingly by her caregivers. Oh, Joyce did have spunk, but she had a loving heart and sense of humor to go with it. It will not be easy to say goodbye to Joyce aka “Nana”. She left a lasting impression on everyone in her life and her family loved her dearly. She will always be remembered as a loyal friend and relative, a selfless mother and grandmother, and a fun-loving, strong-willed woman with a hearty laugh and love of life that will never be forgotten.

“I’ll be seeing you
In every lovely summer’s day
In everything that’s light and gay
I’ll always see you that way”
From Billie Holiday “I’ll Be Seeing You”
Mom, Nana, Great Nana, Aunt Joyce, brave Sister, loyal Friend,
With our love forever,
Your Family

Celebration of Life Service Saturday, October 13, 2018 at 11:30 AM at GUNDERSON FUNERAL HOME, 5203 Monona Dr. in Madison, Wisconsin, 53716, where the family will receive friends SATURDAY MORNING 10-11:30 AM. Burial following at Highland Memory Gardens in Madison, Wisconsin. Local arrangements by DEJOHN FUNERAL HOMES OF WILLOUGHBY HILLS.

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  1. I’m sorry to hear of Joyce’s passing. She was a very sweet woman, I remember her from when I was in my 20’s. Joyce and Ray sounded like they lived life to the fullest. I’m sure Ray was waiting with his dance shoes on, to be together again. Hugs to Jeanne, Jim and Ardith.

  2. My Aunt Joyce was the Aunt that always greeted you with a big smile and arms spread to give you a big hug, which also meant a big kiss and a little of her red lipstick. She always made me feel special and loved as a kid.
    As a young adult I worked at the Elks lodge and saw Joyce and Ray often, always by each others side in every way. Joyce had many friends and she loved to socialize and share her opinions, especially after a second extra dry vodka martini with pickled mushrooms. On the very rare occasion when she would have a third, the stool next to her would get a steady barrage of thought and opinion weather there was someone sitting there or not.
    Her and Ray always made it to special events we had for our kids or family. “Blood” was very thick for Joyce, family meant everything. Joyce was a real tiger cat in defense of family.
    Joyce was a special influence in my life as a kid and throughout my life. She has made an impression on me that I will always have and never forget. Happy she is back along the side of her beloved Ray. Rest in peace Joyce! I love you.

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