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JOYCE ARLENE BROOKS  (published on October 09, 2010)

JOYCE ARLENE BROOKS (MCDONALD) November 15, 1948 October 4, 2010 Our lives changed forever on Monday when Joyce, our wife, mother, grandmother, sister and friend passed away suddenly. She lived 61 wonderful years, and we appreciate how each day we had with her was a special blessing. Still, we struggle to fill the void her passing has created and feel the sting of knowing her beautiful light was snuffed out decades too soon. Joyce's life revolved around her close-knit group of family and friends, in particular, her husband Randy Risi. They were two peas in a pod who spent all of their free time together working around their house, going for walks and just enjoying each other's company. The best things in life are kept simple such was their love. Randy's wonderful family provided another source of pride for her. She took great joy in watching her grandnieces Abby and Paige grow up and reserved a special spot on her fridge for their photographs. As many mothers of sons would similarly attest, Joyce believed her boys to be the best. Jason (Jennifer) and Jeremy (Katie, grandson William) want mom to know the feeling was mutual. We were so loved by her and we loved her so much. Our close bond is a mixed blessing; it provides comfort but at the same time reminds us how significant our loss truly is. William will miss baking with Grandma Joyce', the warmth of her hugs, and her wonderful smile. The popular expression BFF' sums up what Marlene Hanson was to Joyce. Their friendship, more like the bond between two sisters, endured so much joy and grief during a lifetime of shared closeness. Joyce loved Marlene and her family as her own. Joyce is survived by her brother Gordon (Debbie). They too suffered the pain of losing their parents (Alec and Rose) and, in untimely fashion, their brothers: Mickey and Murray. Their relationship weathered this grief, as well as other ups and downs, because, no matter what, they loved each other. Joyce was blessed with many talents and a tack-sharp mind. She was equally adept as a financial advisor as she was in her creative pursuits: Joyce wrote incredible prose and had a keen eye for decorating her home. She applied her many skills in service to her church Immanuel United and in her job at Continental Travel. With both groups she forged family-like bonds. Joyce desired not to have a memorial service she was modest to a fault but we invite anyone who wishes to share their memories of her with the family; your stories are the stitches that will help us mend our broken hearts. Joyce believed that a day without laughter was a day wasted. As we celebrate her life, we will certainly remember countless funny stories. And when we do, we will listen for her infectious laughter in concert with our own. Joyce's love for kids extended beyond family and borders as she sponsored children from other parts of the world. In lieu of flowers, we ask that donations be made to a Winnipeg-based charity Canadians Helping Kids in Vietnam that we feel embodies her beliefs. They can be reached online ( or by phone at (204) 775-1160. There is no fitting way to end this tribute to Joyce because for us, it should continue to be as it was before Monday: a living tribute, one that is with each passing day a work in progress. She loved music, and the song Have I Told You Lately by Van Morrison was special to us all. We offer her these final words of thanks, a modest tweak of Van's beautiful lyrics: (You) filled our hearts with gladness. Took away all our sadness. Eased our troubles, that's what you did. FUNERAL ARRANGEMENTS IN CARE OF: WHEELER FUNERAL CHAPEL 211 REGENT AVENUE, WEST(AT BOND ST.) 224-1525

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