Obituary: Joyce H. (Chappelear) Griffith, 81

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HOLDEN, Mass. – Joyce H. (Chappelear) Griffith, 81, of Oregon Trail, died peacefully at home under the loving care of her family and the staff at Visiting Nurse Association Home Hospice on Saturday, Dec. 8, 2012. Her beloved husband of 60 years, Homer W. Griffith died this past Feb. 23.

She is survived by four sons, Michael W. Griffith and his wife Leah of Port Charlotte, FL, James B. Griffith of West Boylston, Daniel F. Griffith of Worcester and Thomas A. Griffith and his wife Cheryl of Holden; a daughter, Cheryl Lynn Durling and her husband Michael of Naples, ME; a sister, Linda A. Travers of Owings, MD; nine grandchildren; 13 great-grandchildren; a brother-in-law, Robert Kirby and sister-in-law, Hope (Griffith) Kirby of Freedom, N.H.; many nephews and nieces she adored. A sister, Joanne Rinker, predeceased her.

Joyce was born and raised in Washington, D.C., daughter of James A. and Dorothy H. (Jenkins) Chappelear, and graduated from Anacostia High School. In 1954, she along with her husband relocated to Holden where she raised her five children and lived for the past 58 years.

In addition to raising her children, Joyce worked in the insurance industry for over 40 years which included 30 years at Braley & Wellington Insurance Agency in Worcester. She was a former member of St. Michael’s-on-the-Heights Church in Worcester. She particularly took pleasure in puttering around her yard and watching the seasonal Ruby Neck hummingbirds that would visit her backyard feeders. She was a dedicated wife, mother and grandmother who enjoyed family cookouts, movies and spending the winter months with Homer in Boynton Beach, Florida. Joyce’s life revolved around her family and everything that encompassed their lives. She was an amazingly strong woman who met any challenge head on with strength and determination. She was the Matriarch of our family and we will miss her tremendously.

Relatives and friends are invited to visit with Joyce’s family from 10 to 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 12, at the Miles Funeral Home, 1158 Main Street (Rte. 122A), Holden, followed by a funeral service honoring her life at 11:30 a.m. in the funeral home. A private committal service will be held at the Massachusetts Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery, Winchendon.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations may be made to the American Cancer Society, 30 Speen Street, Framingham, MA 01701; or to VNA Care Hospice, 120 Thomas Street, Worcester, MA 01608.

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