Joyce A. Eyster of Los Alamos, New Mexico, passed away peacefully in her apartment at Aspen Ridge Lodge on November 30, 2022.
Joyce was 101 years old, born March 13, 1921, to Robert and Esther Krenz in their farm house in rural Minnesota near the small towns of Tintah and Wheaton. She grew up on the farm with her parents and brother, James Krenz, surrounded by a large extended family. She learned to value hard work, optimistic faith in God, and the importance of being an active member of her community.
She married Eugene Eyster, also from Wheaton, on January 6, 1942, a bitterly cold day but the beginning of a long and happy life together. Eugene passed away February 17, 2013, after 71 years of marriage.
Joyce is survived by her five children Susan, Peter (Kathy), James (Jacqueline), Barbara Van Pelt (Keith), and Robert, twelve grandchildren and numerous great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren.
Joyce and Eugene were founding members of the Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Los Alamos and were both very active in all aspects of the church. The church and the fellowship of its members and guests were the foundation of her life.
Joyce was a happy and energetic person. She always started her days well before dawn with swimming, reading the Bible and daily devotionals, making lists of things to accomplish, and baking – all before anyone else in the family was out of bed. Joyce and Eugene enjoyed hiking and camping, traveling and cooking for their family and friends.
Joyce was especially known for the beautiful wedding cakes she made for generations of brides and for the homemade cookies she gave to school children on their way home, to neighbors and strangers, and to visitors at the Los Alamos Medical Center where she volunteered. She was widely known as the Cookie Lady or as Grandma Cookie and believed that sharing homemade cookies created friendships and made the world connected and harmonious.
In 2015 Joyce was honored as a Los Alamos Living Treasure, a well-deserved tribute.
A memorial service to celebrate her life will be held on January 21, 2023, at 10:00 a.m. at Bethlehem Lutheran Church, 2390 North Road, Los Alamos, New Mexico. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Bethlehem Lutheran Church.
Joyce’s family has entrusted her care to Rivera Family Funeral Home of Los Alamos. Please leave messages of condolence, stories, and pictures of Joyce’s life at www.riverafamilyfuneralhome.com.