Joyce M. (Schofield) Downey 89, of Fitchburg, formerly of Lunenburg died on September 24, 2020 due to complications from a fall. She was born in Waltham to Alice (McNamara) and Robie Schofield on Nov 5, 1930, the youngest of three children. She was predeceased by her husband of 49 years, John H. Downey; a sister, Muriel Collins and husband Craig; her brother Robert Schofield; her sister-in-law and husband, Anne and Dan Donahue; her son, Walter Downey; and her nephews, Jim and Larry Collins.
She leaves her children, Susan Downey of Fitchburg, Dennis and Patrick Downey of New Mexico, Diane Downey of Tennessee, and Maura (Jeff) Lizek of Lunenburg; her grandchildren Cara (Juan) Castaner, Jason (Rosilly) Lizek, Nick (Mosa) Downey, Larry Colburn, Patrick Downey, Ryan Lizek, Derrick Pearson, Ricky Pearson, Shaunna (Greg) Lizotte, Tim (Haley) Downey and Andrew Downey. She also leaves five great-grandchildren and her dear nieces, Pam (Ron) Evans, Liz Whipple, Carole Collins, their wonderful families, and her many beloved cousins. Her love extended to so many more who may not be related by blood.
Joyce graduated from Watertown High in 1948, Bridgewater State in 1952 and Boston University in 1953. She did graduate work at UMass Amherst and the University of Southern California. She taught in local public schools but spent the majority of her teaching career at Fitchburg State from 1968 to 1995. Joyce coached field hockey, volleyball and tennis at the college and high school levels. She participated in and earned awards for sports throughout her life. She proudly served as the captain of her high school basketball team. She bowled and was an avid and competitive tennis player well into her 70’s. Joyce was a 4H leader. She was a member of St. Boniface and sang in the choir for many years. She also worked for the IRS seasonally.
She liked to travel and take pictures of her many adventures and family gatherings. Everywhere she went, Joyce made friends. She was a strong role model for women and a mentor to many throughout her life. Most importantly, she loved her family and friends and enjoyed spending time with them and learning about their lives. She truly cared about others.
The Lunenburg Chapel of the Sawyer-Miller-Masciarelli Funeral Homes, 763 Mass Avenue, Lunenburg, MA has been entrusted with Joyce’s funeral arrangements.
There will be a funeral mass at St. Boniface Church 817 Massachusetts Ave, Lunenburg, MA 01462in Lunenburg on Saturday, October 3rd at 10:00 a.m. with time for visiting 9:00 - 9:30 a.m. Due to social distancing guidelines, there is a limit of 50 People. Only family and close friends are encouraged to attend. There will be a big celebration of Joyce’s life in the future.
In lieu of flowers please consider donating to The Michael J. Fox Foundation or The Arthritis Foundation in Joyce’s name.
John F. Masciarelli and Walter C. Taylor funeral directors.
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