Lillian “Joyce” (Townsend) Baker, 95, died peacefully in her sleep on Sunday, April 23, 2023, following a long battle with Alzheimer’s Dementia. She was born in Osceola, IN on September 25, 1927, to Forrest and Ethel (Snyder) Townsend and was an area resident all her life. She was a cherished wife, loving mother, beloved grandma and a favorite aunt. Her listening ear, caring heart and infectious humor made her a wonderful confidant and friend.
Joyce is survived by her daughters, Cindy (Dan) Weatherly of Homer, AK and Joyce “Jodie” Brink of Mishawaka; daughter-in-law, Kay Baker of Mishawaka; 4 grandsons, Dan (Claudia) Weatherly, Rob (Valerie) Brink, Kevin Brink, Ian (Melanie) Weatherly and Dan Kerenan; granddaughters, Terri (Dennis) Ratherink, Sadie (David) Meehan and Betty Kernan; 16 great grandchildren; sisters, Nina Harman and Ruby Bressler; as well as many nieces and nephews and her “Squires” family.
Joyce was a graduate of Jimtown High School and married her high school sweetheart and best friend, Robert W. Baker upon his return from the service in the Pacific Theatre of WWII. They enjoyed 54 years together. After raising her children, Joyce filled her “empty nest” by working in the Madison Township School cafeteria and “loving on those kids”.
Bob’s death was a devastating loss for Joyce. She found healing and a new purpose through the OUMC Grief Support Group where she made many treasured friendships. She was always an active member of her church and her community.
In addition to her husband and parents, Joyce was preceded in death by her son, Jon R. Baker; grandson, Jason R. Baker; brothers-in-law, Bob Harman and Don Bressler; brothers and sisters-in-law, Thelma and Lee Valentine, Joe & Amber Baker, Lucy & Bud Herman, Lily Fay and Ronnie Blair, Ross & Agnes (Bud & Sis) Baker and Jean Baker Matthews.
The family would like to thank Dr. John Bulger for his years of care and support through Mom’s lengthy illness. Thanks also to the friends and neighbors whose kindness and care allowed us to keep her at home as long as possible. And to the caregivers of Wedgewood Pine SNF when we were no longer able to continue to care for her at home.
A celebration of Joyce’s life will take place in October so all the family will be able to attend. Joyce will be privately buried at Fairview Cemetery in Mishawaka.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Alzheimer's & Dementia Services of Northern Indiana, 111 Sunnybrook Court, South Bend, IN 46637 or charity of donor’s choice.
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