2023: Here we go! I hope everyone made it through the COVID madness. It would be SO much harder for those suffering from Alzheimer's! You can read my story below. My mom was an amazing woman! Alzheimer's is an awful disease Please support the fight in finding a cure!
2022: Another Crazy year!!! Mom passed from Alzheimer's on November 29th 2015. We had already been doing the walk for many years, but in 2016 I created Team Joy in honor of mom and to help support a great organization. Join the fight!!! Join or support Team Joy!!!
What a crazy year! Who would have thought any of this would be going on a year ago. Covid-19 has changed so much! It has also made fundraising VERY difficult! Team Joy is getting fired up! This will be our 5th year walking under Team Joy and many years walking as individuals. I thought My goal last year was crazy. But with everyone's help and support we raised over $13K dollars!!! So, I am asking again for your help! Contribute to Team Joy in honor of my mom and all the others who have passed from this disease. Also, to help support an amazing organization in the Alzheimer’s Association!
From my Sister Claudia 2020:
First I want to say what a great job, Brian has done with Team Joy all these years. Bravo, my brother! I am Joy's daughter, Claudia and was Mom's caregiver for the last five years of her life. I always think of that time as 'the hardest job I will ever love'. Now five years later I want to share some other things about Mom, before Alzheimer's. Mom was a beautiful, talented, perfectionist. She was a very good cook too and I have continued her penchant for marinating, with gusto!
Mom was an accomplished seamstress and sewed adorable outfits for her cherished granddaughters Kellye and Brenna, and for Brian (favorite brother!) and me when we were all younger. Mom's faith was of utmost importance to her. Her Bible, full of her personal notations over the years is a priceless treasure. Mom and I shared a fascination for what I call 'Big Sky'. I hold dear the personal photos she took of clouds in a blue sky. I like to put it this way: 'Be still, and look up into a vast blue sky defined by clouds, ever changing clouds. And be in awe'.
Mom loved her family to bits. And the love of her life her beloved Don made it all come together in a colorful, vibrant circle of love, laughter and always music. Music from Erroll Garner, Ella Fitzgerald, Harry Belafonte to Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Dave Brubeck, Duke Ellington, Mario Lanza, Pavarotti, Rachmaninoff, Andy Williams Christmas albums and many more. I feel like it was yesterday and yet also an eternity since we lost her, but I know that she is at peace; singing, dancing, playing the piano and loving us all. Mom is her original and authentic self which gives me great JOY!
WOW! Another year! This is our 4th year walking under Team Joy! Last year was amazing! We tripled our Fund raising from the previous year. We brought in $7,500! We are setting the bar high this year at $15,000! So, I am reaching out a little farther. We need your help to find the first Alzheimer’s Survivor!
We lost my mom on November 29th, 2015. My mom was a FORCE of nature. There are no kind diseases, but watching mom battle this disease for well over a decade was heartbreaking. This is a very emotional process for me. But, it has been awesome creating Team Joy to honor my mom. So, I am asking for your help. Contribute to Team Joy in honor of my mom and all the others who have passed from this disease. Also, to help support an amazing organization in the Alzheimer’s Association!
We have done the walk for several years now. This is the third year walking for Team Joy!
We lost my mom on November 29th, 2015. As I have said many times in the past my mom was a FORCE of nature. There are no kind diseases, but watching mom battle this disease for well over a decade was heartbreaking. This is a very emotional process for me. But, it has been awesome creating Team Joy to honor my mom. So, I am asking for your help. Contribute to Team Joy in honor of my mom and all the others who have passed from this disease.
This is your opportunity to support the fight to cure a horrible disease and to show support for an awesome organization in the Alzheimer’s Association! Thank you!
We have done the walk for a number of years now. This is the second year walking for Team Joy! When you attend the walk you are given a plastic flower that spins in the wind. Kind of like the ones we had as kids. There are four colors; Blue, Yellow, Purple, and Orange. Each has a meaning. We have a few Yellow flowers, they mean you are supporting or caring for someone with Alzheimer’s. Last year we received Purple flowers. They mean you have lost someone to Alzheimer’s. We lost my mom on November 29th, 2015. As I have said many times in the past my mom was a FORCE of nature. There are no kind diseases, but watching mom battle this disease for well over a decade was heartbreaking. This is a very emotional process for me. But, it has been awesome creating Team Joy to honor my mom. So, I am asking for your help. Contribute to Team Joy in honor of my mom and all the others who have passed from this disease. And thank everyone who supports them and also supports the fight to end Alzheimer’s! Thank you!
I have decided to keep in the original stories and notes from last year:
My mom suffered from Alzheimer's for many years. We lost her in December of 2015. Mom was a force of nature. Always a fighter. It was hard to watch the progression over the years. But there was always a spark. Sometimes it was when mom would start to sing a little. Mom sang on the radio when she was a teen. Please help support finding an end to a terrible disease. Thank you!
8/26/16: I thought I would update this from time to time until the walk with additional story and some pictures. Mom's onset was about 15 years ago. It was hard watching the changes. At first mom would get angry when she realized she was forgetting things. Then it was the little things over the years. People have pet phrases they say to each other. With mom it was Hellooooooooooooo. The H is high and the o is drawn out. Sort of with a British inflection. I would say it to mom and she would say it back. This worked for awhile in the beginning. Then there wouldn't be a response, just a bright smile. Then it would just be a twinkle in her eyes. As I said it is hard watching the changes. But we always knew mom was in there!
8/30/16 - From my sister Claudia
My name is Claudia. I was my Mom, Joy's caregiver. This special, challenging, bittersweet, but always love filled time with my Mom was a great blessing for me. Joy's life force was incredibly strong and she so loved her husband of 64 years, Don, who loved her back with such grace, respect, and honor every single day of her life. Joy also loved her family dearly and with all of her heart. Beautiful big brown eyes, spunk, spirit, music and love. This is Joy! And she watches over us all, she wouldn't have it any other way, nor would we!
9/2/16: First I want to thank everyone for their support, kind words, and donations! Adding to the story. I mentioned before that mom was a force of nature. I truly believe that. When people ask what mom was like that is the first thing I will say. Then I will tell one of my favorite mom stories. Mom and dad took the family to Whistler Blackcomb for Christmas years ago. Included were my sister and brother in law, Shari, and Kellye. Shari was pregnant with Brenna at the time. Mom did all the planning. Mom was very meticulous. Mom was also a list maker. Everything had to be just so for her family. The day of the trip came and we made the drive up to Whistler Blackcomb. Mom and I doing the driving (there may have been a little racing...). We arrive at the Hotel in Blackcomb Village, collect the keys and head up to the room. We pile in and mom takes one look at the room.... Oh no she says... This will not due for my family and my new grand baby! So, all 4'11 1/2" of my mom head down stairs to the front desk. You really did not want to be that front desk agent. In a very calm (I think..) and forceful manner mom explained that that room was not what was promised and would due for her family. I think there might have been a few more words... By the time mom was done we were in a three bedroom penthouse suite over looking the village center. Oh, and at the same rate as the original room. The staff was very apologetic That is how I remember mom! A true force of nature!!!
9/9/16: I want to thank everyone for the donations and support. We are a little over half way to our team goal. It really means a lot!
The story continues! This is a collaboration with my sister Claudia. Mom, along with being a force of nature, was also a fighter and a supporter of many causes and passions. Mom was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease; I think in the early 70’s. Like I said, mom was a fighter! It never broke her spirit or slowed her down. When my sister Claudia was diagnosed in 1980, mom joined forces with Dr. James Wagner (her gastroenterologist) and formed the first local chapter of NFIC (National Foundation of Ileitis and Colitis). Mom talked to many others who suffered from Crohn’s and Iletis providing support and direction, along with her positive outlook. In mom’s spare time, along with keeping tabs on me (full time job…) Mom was a volunteer at Overlake Hospital in Bellevue. Mom was also an ardent and dedicated supporter of St. Jude's Research Hospital and had many photos of the children they were treating, on her nightstand. I know I have said this a few times in the continuing story, but a force of nature is what always comes to mind when I think of mom!
9/16/16 - This has been amazing! We are a little more than 3/4 of the way to our goal. Thank you so much! The story continues with a historical connection. Mom was musically inclined. She sang, played the piano, and could tap dance among other things. Mom very much wanted to pass this love along to her granddaughters. Mom had my dad make a portable dance floor so she could teach the girls to tap dance. There was also a microphone stand. I think the girls used to sneak in there and play with the microphone and the dance floor… The girls loved to visit and stay with Mom & Dad. They each had their own rooms at the house. There are some great pictures of mom and the girls in the kitchen. Standing on stools with Chief hats on helping mom with the cooking. A little historical connection… Robert W. Service wrote poems about the Yukon and the Klondike Gold rush. One of his more famous poems was The Shooting of McGrew. It took place at the Malemute Saloon, in the Ester Gold Camp. There is a line “The kid that handles the music-box was hitting a jag-time tune” Later the “Kid” was referred to as the Rag Time Kid. The Rag Time Kid that handles the Music-Box was my mom’s father, my great grandfather Hartley C. Myrick. Maybe this is where mom’s music roots came from…
9-20-16 - Thank you all again for the donations, support, and kind words. The story continues with my sister Claudia telling one of her favorite memories: "I want to share something special that Mom, Joy imparted to me. One day some time ago, Mom gave me a 'serious' complement. I remember that I thanked her and reflected it right back to her. She then took my hands as we stood there facing each other, looked deeply into my eyes and said firmly 'I'm talking about you'. And there it was, an 'AHA moment'. I smiled, hugged her, saying in effect 'Right, I get it!'. And so, it was fun because I had occasions to use it on Mom herself! And I have used it going forward whenever the circumstances presented themselves. Always brings a smile on each side when it happens. I encourage everyone to employ this simple, loving exchange. For me it is a heart song memory that always, always makes me smile and think of Mom."
9-22-16 - Well, we are just about there! The walk is Sunday. I really don’t have words for all of the kind comments, support, and donations! We are at 85% of our goal. My sister, Claudia added a memory earlier this week. Creating Team Joy and the sharing the story has been a great way to relive the memories of mom before Alzheimer’s. There are lots of stories over the past 15 years, but what I wanted to remember and share, were the memories of mom before that time. But, over the past 15 years you could always tell mom was there. Her eyes would brighten when we walked into the room. I was talking to our younger daughter Brenna the other day. She was explaining to me about how she realized she really did learn her values and morals from Shari and I over the years. I said, yes, I think when I was about your age I figured out, that I guess I was paying attention when my mom and dad were trying to tell/teach me things. With our girls growing up we had three rules we lived by with them; We will ALWAYS love you, we will NEVER give up on you, and we will ALWAYS get through whatever was going on. Without saying it, that is how Mom and Dad raised my sister and I. Mom and Dad were always there for us. So it has been an honor to be there for mom with Team Joy!
9-25-16 - We did it! The walk was this morning! What a day! We had 17 walkers in our group! Team Joy raised $2,295! This has been a really incredible experience! I really didn't know what I was going to do and where it was going to end up. This was AWESOME! Thank you ALL for your support and donations and helping me honor my mom!
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