Jacqueline Joyce Johnson White
December 15, 1931 – November 15, 2021
Joyce J. White, age 89, longtime resident of Gainesville, Florida, slipped away from us peacefully on November 15, 2021 after a long goodbye from the afflictions of Alzheimer’s Disease/Dementia.
Born Jacqueline Joyce Johnson in Altoona, Florida, Joyce would become the middle child of seven born to her parents, Charles Cornelius Johnson, Sr. and Nina Mildred Byrd Johnson. The family lived in Central Florida and Northeast Florida before moving to the Gainesville area. Joyce enrolled in Gainesville High School in 1948 where she was active in many clubs, sports and activities graduating from GHS in1951. While still in High School, Joyce began working at the State of Florida, Department of Revenue in the Sales Tax and Documentary Stamp division and remained with the Department of Revenue for her entire work life retiring as an office manager after 33 years of service.
On July 3, 1955, Joyce and Julian Ray (J.R.) White were married in Folkston, Georgia. They had been acquainted through family ties and by sharing a love of sports, notably baseball. They lived happily together in their home on Archer Road in Gainesville for 40 years until Ray’s death in 1995. Joyce then moved to her present home in Northwest Gainesville where she resided until advancing Alzheimer’s Disease made it impossible for her to live independently.
Joyce had many varied interests in life. In addition to working and raising her children and later being involved with her grandchildren, Joyce loved music, was an avid reader, enjoyed completing crossword and jigsaw puzzles, was accomplished in both counted cross-stitch and crochet, loved gardening and just being outdoors, and was an outstanding cook and baker.
While she loved her family and was extremely proud of their accomplishments, Joyce found her greatest joy in life through her attendance and work with her beloved church family at Oak Park Baptist Church. A woman of strong faith, Joyce was a charter member of Oak Park (then known as the Archer Road Baptist Chapel). Joyce loved her church family and held many different roles as the church continued to grow. Among these was Church Clerk, Women’s Missionary Union director, Sunday School Teacher for the Adult Ladies Class for many years (even after her illness was diagnosed), choir member, church office secretary, member of numerous committee’s and just about anything else that needed doing.
Joyce and Ray both loved the mountains of North Carolina where they maintained a summer cabin in Maggie Valley where family and friends often joined them for wonderful times over the years.
Joyce led a full and productive life and she will be forever loved and missed by her family and friends.
Joyce was preceded in death by her parents; husband Julian Ray White; sisters Edna M. Reed and Judi Curtis and brothers Charles C. Johnson, Jr. and Laurence Johnson; and by Step-daughter Julia (Judy) A. Merritt.
She is survived by her sons: Stephen A. (Steve) White and wife Sharon; Joseph M. (Joe) White and wife Sonya; step-son Charles R. White and wife Nadine, and Son-in-law Tex A. Merritt. Her Grandchildren: Travis A. White, Samuel J. White, Elizabeth R. White, Lisa Lee, Kevin White (Melissa) and Mark Merritt (Amy). Four Great-grandchildren: Allen Lee, Luke White, Evan White and Blake Merritt. Brother: Donald R. Johnson, and Sister, Diane Graham (John). Joyce is also survived by numerous nieces and nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews, many friends, neighbors and caregivers.
The family would like to extend our thanks and appreciation to Marsha Boyd of Touching Hearts at Home, the staff of the Williston Care Center, and the staff at the Haven Hospice E.T. York Care Center for their compassionate care of Joyce during her illness.
The viewing for Mrs. White and visitation with the family will be held on Sunday November 21st from 3:00pm to 5:00pm at Milam Funeral Home, 311 South Main Street, Gainesville Florida. Funeral services will be held on Monday November 22nd at 11:00am at Oak Park Baptist Church with Pastor Danny Austin officiating. Interment will follow the service at Evergreen Cemetery in Gainesville.
Joyce loved flowers and those that wish to honor her memory in this way are welcome to do so. In lieu of flowers those who wish may consider a donation to the Alzheimer’s Association, Central and North Florida Chapter, PO Box 96011, Washington DC 20090-6011 or to the Building fund at Oak Park Baptist Church.
Arrangements have been placed under the care of Milam Funeral and Cremation Services, 311 S. Main Street, Gainesville, Florida 32601. (352) 376- 5361.