PAINESDALE - Joyce E. Hietala, 77, of Painesdale, died on Monday, May, 27, 2013, at Portage Health in Hancock with her family by her side.
She was born in Misery Bay, Mich., on February 6, 1936, a daughter of the late Reynold and Helmi (Wiitala) Taavola. She attended the Misery Bay School and graduated from the Jeffers High School in 1954.
Joyce was formerly employed at Nelson's Restaurant in Houghton, J.C. Penney Co. in Houghton and the Copper Country Mall Halmark Store at the Copper Country Mall, Pelkie Credit Union and Grego Child Day Care in Houghton.
Her true work and rewards were the relationships she built and nurtured with her husband, children, grandchildren, family and friends. This is what was most important to Joyce.
On October 29, 1956, she was married to Edsel A. "Art" Hietala in Laurium.
Joyce was a member of the Painesdale Apostolic Lutheran Church and was a quilter at the Grace Lutheran Church in South Range. She was also a member of the Toivola Senior Citizens and served as a 4-H Leader. She was known by many as the "Jam Lady" for her delicious raspberry jam. She was a wonderful bread maker and enjoyed working in her vegetable and flower gardens. She also did crocheting, knitting and crafting. She enjoyed fishing at Misery River and hiking around Lake Superior.
Joyce actively followed her children, grandkids, nieces and nephews in all sporting activities they participated in. In her early years, she played short stop for the Bosch Brewery Women's Softball Team.
Surviving are her husband, Edsel "Art" Hietala of Painesdale; a son, Glenn and his fiancee, Chris Rushlo of Liminga; a daughter, Sherri Nettell (Bill Degenhardt) of Painesdale; three grandchildren, Josh (Christian) Nettell of Houghton and his four great-grandcats, Destri (Zoe) Nettell of Fond Du Lac, Wis. and Tyler Hietala of Horicon, Wis; two brothers, Bruce (Jean) Taavola of Painesdale and Brian (Adele) Taavola of South Range; two sisters-in-law, Bonnie (Al) Degenhardt and Jackie (Ron) Hietala; dear friends, Sharon and Joan; numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
Besides her parents, Joyce was also preceded in death by an infant daughter; a son, Garry; brothers-in-law, Clifford, Ron and Matt Hietala and Frank Morin; sisters-in-law, Donna Silbert, Mary Ann Dunstan, Dagmar Morin and Sandra Lee Hietala.
The family would like to extend a special thank you to Dr. Janners and his staff, ASPIRUS Home Health & Hospice (Jane and Debbie), and the staff at Portage Health for their loving care.
A memorial service will be held at 12 p.m. on Saturday, June 1, 2013, in the South Range Apostolic Lutheran Church with Pastor Jay Weidner and Pastor Chuck Bylkas to officiate. Visitation will be one hour prior to the service on Saturday in the church. Interment will be in the Toivola Cemetery.
Arrangements are being handled by the Mountain View Mortuary in South Range, Antila Funeral Service, Inc. Online condolences may be expressed to the family at antilafuneral.com.