Joyce Harrison Smith
Joyce Harrison Smith, 91, Wamego, died September 6, 2020, at Wamego Health Center after suffering a stroke on September 3. Born on September 2, 1929, to Glen and Flo Harrison in Topeka, Kansas, Joyce graduated from Topeka High School in 1947. She attended Washburn University where she pledged Alpha Phi sorority.
On August 28, 1948, she married Don Smith; they later divorced. In 1950, she and Don moved to Dodge City where she lived for 54 years. Joyce was a long time member of the First Presbyterian Church of Dodge City where she served as an Elder and a Deacon. She was a member of P.E.O., Chapters CF and EY and in 2009 was honored as a Golden Girl (50 year member). During her time in Dodge City, Joyce was active in PTA of Central School, Girl Scouts, American Field Service, and 4-H. She was a founding member of the Bas Bleu Study Club. In 2004, Joyce moved to Wamego, Kansas, where her daughters live, and remained there until the time of her death.
Joyce is survived by her 3 children: Don (Jan) Smith, Jr., Denver, Colorado; Sarah (Curtis) Barr, Wamego, Kansas; Kim (Jay) Clark, Wamego, Kansas; 3 grandchildren: Luke Henson and partner, Shauna Swanson, Wamego, Kansas; Emily (Andrew) Humm, Pomona, Kansas; Will (Sydney) Clark, Topeka, Kansas; and 1 great-grand daughter, Hannah Kathleen Humm. Hannah was born on Joyce’s 91st birthday, 4 days before Joyce died.
Joyce was a life-long learner and encouraged others to be curious and inquisitive. She enjoyed reading, working crossword puzzles, gardening, drives in the Flint Hills, and sitting on her incredible front porch watching the world go by. Friends would come from near and far to relax on the front porch and catch up on family news. A good day was based upon whether or not it was a porch sitting day.
It was important to Joyce that young women be encouraged to pursue their personal and professional goals. She was delighted to watch women rise in politics and had hoped that the first woman president would be elected during her lifetime. It was rare that Joyce missed voting in any election. In November, honor her memory by voting for candidates who build bridges instead of walls, who believe that in diversity we are made stronger and for whom public service is a true calling.
Joyce was an organ donor and even at 91 was able to contribute to the healing of others.
Cremation has taken place and a Celebration of Life will take place in the Spring. Memorials are suggested to the Wamego Community Garden, Wamego Public Library, or Friendship Feast at the First Presbyterian Church of Dodge City.
Dove Southwest Chapel is assisting with arrangements. To leave a special message for the family online, visit www.DoveTopeka.com