Joyce Elsaesser

Published 10:00 am Wednesday, February 7, 2024

Jan. 6, 1944 – Feb. 3, 2024 

Joyce Elsaesser, 80, of Meherrin, passed away peacefully in her home on Saturday, Feb. 3, after many months of battling respiratory and pulmonary issues. Joyce was born on Jan. 6, 1944 in Farmville, and is predeceased by her parents, Harvey and Frances Knick; her sister, Ellen Jane Slayton; her husband, Raymond Elsaesser, and her dear friend, Linda Taylor. 

Joyce and her husband Raymond were married for 59 years and raised four children on their tobacco and vegetable farm in Meherrin. Joyce was a bus driver and office assistant at Prince Edward Academy/Fuqua School where students fondly called her Mrs. E. and often do still today. 

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If anyone ever left her home hungry, it was their own fault. The only thing she loved more than cooking and baking was sharing her tasty dishes. Her cinnamon rolls and doughnuts were among her children’s favorites. When the gardens overflowed with vegetables, she spent the summer and fall canning, freezing, or pickling their harvests of corn, green beans, cucumbers and squash among many others. Joyce loved snow almost as much as ocean breezes by the beach. She went over the top every Christmas with decorations, gifts, and of course, food. She loved working puzzles and dancing with Raymond in their healthier years, and she was a tough competitor at any card game just like her late husband. 

Joyce is survived by 2 of her sisters, Patsy Knick Powell and Evelyn Frye; her four children, Karen Newman (Micky), Phyllis Elsaesser, Keith Elsaesser (Pam Pierce) and Kathy Rhodes (Dusty); and her daughter-in-love, Lisa Elsaesser. She is also survived by her eight grandchildren, Bobby Newman, Allison Dunn (Anthony), Dustin Elsaesser (Brittany), Amanda McKay (Brandon), Brittany Smith (Evan Barnes), Josh Smith, Sam Rhodes and Max Rhodes and her five great-grandchildren, Brantley Dunn, Saylor Dunn, Owen Newman, Lakelynn Elsaesser and Vanessa McKay. 

The family is profoundly grateful for Joyce’s dedicated caregivers, especially Eileen Dolson, Dusty Seymour and James River Hospice for their compassionate care and support of Joyce and her family. 

The family received visitors at Joyce’s home in Meherrin, on Monday, Feb. 5, starting at 4 p.m. The funeral was held at Shorter Funeral Home in Farmville on Tuesday, Feb. 6, at 12 p.m., with visitation at 11 a.m. prior to the service. Graveside followed at the Methodist Church, Meherrin. 

Shorter Funeral Home is serving the family.