Even though she was given 9 months upon her diagnosis, Joyce fought on for over 2 years. She passed away peacefully on March 11, 2022, surrounded by family at the Dourte Farm which she called home for almost 37 years.
Joyce was born April 29, 1953, in Long Island, NY to Thomas Zimnoch and Jeannette Zimnoch. She moved with her family to PA as a young girl and spent most of her life in Lebanon, PA.
Graduating from Millersville University, Joyce was a special education teacher in the Annville-Cleona School District for over 36 years. And at the same time that she was caring for her young daughters and working full time, she received her Masters in Education. But it wasn’t just her academic endeavors in education that made her such an impactful teacher. Her dedication to her students stretched in and out of the classroom. As she encountered students who needed extra support, donation of basic supplies, or sometimes a visit from a friendly face for a holiday, she was willingly there to help.
Joyce loved the arts, both as an appreciator – from traversing the area for art shows, to seeking out murals and sculptures on any city tour, to attending book reviews in Mt Gretna – as well as an artist herself. A few of her watercolors are infamous amongst her family, but even the doodles you’d find on various notepads had her special flair. You can see her refined taste in the paintings and pottery she collected, even the hanging mobiles and intricate paper-cut pop-up books that she carefully curated throughout her house. She was always the one you wanted arranging a flower display or decorating the Thanksgiving tablescape.
Joyce is survived by her husband, Dale, of 44 years with whom she shared many adventures – some of which you’d even be able to get her to admit were fun – and two daughters LeAnn Dourte Segan and Emily Lessa (Dourte), and their respective husbands, Andrew Segan and Fabio Lessa. And it’s no secret her biggest source of joy was watching her family grow as she became a grandma to Lucas Lessa (age 5), Elloree Segan (age 4), Madison Lessa (age 2), and Easton Segan (age 1).
She was incredibly close with her family having spent many camping trips, fun-filled nights, and holiday celebrations together. Those left to honor her memory and retell the stories are siblings Barry Zimnoch and his wife Joan Zimnoch, Pamela Dogger (Zimnoch), and her husband Frank Howard Dogger, Steven Zimnoch and his wife Deborah Zimnoch, and William Zimnoch and his wife Gail Zimnoch.
The family will be holding a Celebration of Life at a later date.