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Obituary: Joyce E. Beyer

April 28, 1944 – Sept. 25, 2023

Joyce E. Beyer, 79, Pulaski, passed away peacefully, Monday, Sept. 25, 2023, at Good Shepherd Nursing Home, Seymour. The daughter of Lester and Laura (Freiman) Anderson was born April 28, 1944, in Sturgeon Bay.

Joyce was a 1962 graduate of Gibraltar High School, where she was sophomore class president, an NHS member, yearbook editor, and Souza Award recipient. After graduating with high honors, she attended Lawrence University, earning a Bachelors Degree in both French and Music. She then attended UW Madison, earning a Masters Degree in French. She began her teaching career in Fond du Lac in 1967.

On June 22, 1968, she married Thomas Beyer at St. Paul Catholic Church in Fish Creek. Shortly after marriage, the couple moved to Germany where Tom was stationed in the Army, and she worked as a special education aid, GED instructor, and gave oboe lessons. After moving back to the United States, Joyce taught French and general music for 6 years at Clintonville High School.  In 1978, she was hired by the Pulaski School District where she taught high school French for the next 23 years. While at PHS, she established the French Club, which offered many activities to her students, including football concessions, French Club dinners specializing in wonderful cuisine, and many other fun and lucrative ideas. Students who participated in French Club activities earned points, and all of the proceeds from French Club activities were used to help hard-working students use those points to travel to France and Canada. Joyce believed you not only teach the language, but foster interest in the entire culture, and travel to foreign countries was a part of those beliefs.

Following retirement in 2001, Joyce spent much of her time volunteering at the Pulaski Food Pantry, Peace Lutheran Church, and travelled to most of the high schools in Brown County registering first time voters. She kept in contact with many of her students and could often tell you what a lot of those students were doing at any given time.  She celebrated the successes of her students long after she sent them off to adult life, and took great pride in their many accomplishments.

Joyce had a deep love for travel. She went all over the world to experience others’ cultures and ways of life. While teaching, she took at least 14 trips to France and Quebec, and encouraged all her students to participate. She would frequently take students to the Chicago Art Museum, and sneak in visits to the Kris Kringle Mart, a personal love. She would take students annually to the Milwaukee Folk Fair so they could experience food, dance and music from other counties. Her son Steve’s family lived for many years in Ontario, Canada, and she adored trips to see them. Her travels after retirement were largely through the Road Scholar program, where she traveled to Prince Edward Island, the Grand Canyon, Seattle, the Outer Banks of North Carolina, and to her family’s original homeland, Norway. This was her most beloved trip, and she met distant relatives and walked the lands of her ancestors.

Joyce enjoyed reading and participating in Pulaski book clubs. She was also a lifetime flower gardener, boater, and fisher of bass, perch, and salmon on Lake Michigan. She was a savvy card-player, especially loving cribbage, which she played with Tom for their entire marriage. She canned and froze all of her own food, and made maple syrup with Tom. She loved to cut grass and even named her John Deere lawn mowers “Kermit the Elder” and “Kermit the Younger”. Watching Jeopardy with Tom was a daily staple, even up to their final day together. Joyce was kind, beautiful, generous, and a teacher of life. She was loved by everyone and loved everyone, and was always watching out for the underdog and the marginalized.

Survivors include her husband, Tom Beyer, Mill Center; two children: Jenny (Jared) Nicks, New Franken and Steve (Wanda) Beyer, Ottawa, Canada; her three grandchildren: Julia Nicks, and James and Anneliese Beyer; a brother-in-law, Bob (Nita) Beyer; nieces and nephews: Ryan Beyer, Heather Sikorsky, Valerie Werton, Mike Nerdahl, Laureen Sanborn, John Anderson, Barb Cain, Debbie Kordon, Tom Anderson, and Tina Voightlander.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Lester and Laura Anderson; a sister, Ruth; brother, Neil (Pat); father-in-law and mother-in-law, Ray and Augusta Beyer; brother-in-law, Bill (Sylvia) Beyer; nephew, Mark Beyer; and a very dear former student, Roger Naniot.

Friends are invited to gather with family at Peace Lutheran Church, 1954 County Road U, Green Bay, on Tuesday, Oct. 3, from 4-7 pm. Visitation will continue at the church on Wednesday, from 10-11 am. The funeral service will be held at 11 am with Pastor Stuart Dornfeld officiating. Interment will be in Blossomberg Cemetery, Fish Creek.

In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to the Pulaski Community Food Pantry.
The family would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to those who visited and provided excellent care to Joyce over the past three months.

To leave a condolence for Joyce’s family, please visit  marnochafuneralhome.com or on the Marnocha Funeral Home Facebook Page.