Our cherished mother and grandmother, Joyce Nichols Hill was reunited with the love of her life, Don William Hill, as she peacefully passed through the veil the morning of June 6, 2022. Prior to her passing at the age of 91, it was a tender mercy for the many members of her family to spend precious time with her, expressing their love as they tenderly cared for her in her home. At the age of 21, as she embarked on her life’s journey with her eternal companion and sweetheart Don, she had no inkling that before graduating from mortality, her family would number 8 children, 47 grandchildren, 130 great-grandchildren and 13 great-great-grandchildren, each of whom dearly loved her. Her life and her thoughts were always centered on the Savior and on her family. As difficult as it might be to remember the names of every member of her expansive family, she didn’t just know their names and birthdates, but she really knew and had a special relationship with each one of them. She found great joy in staying in touch and hearing the latest news about what was going on in their lives.
Joyce was born to Rulon Palmer Nichols and Viola Beckstead on March 11, 1931, in Bennion Utah, the oldest of three children. As a child, she developed a love for reading and could always be found with a book in her hands. As an obedient and thoughtful child, Joyce could be counted on to help with her sister Reva and brother Blaine. Tragedy struck their little family when her mother and baby #4 passed away in childbirth when Joyce was only nine years old. The loss of her mother brought a pain to her heart that endured throughout her life.
For a time, Joyce and her siblings lived with their grandparents until her father remarried Myrtle Maxfield. Their family grew to include her stepbrothers, Lewis and Norman and her stepsister, Mary Ann.
During her school years, Joyce was a dedicated student and was particularly gifted with the ability to spell. Her cheerful nature and pleasant personality won her many friends. She attended and graduated from Granite High School. She was known for her school spirit and was a member of the Pep Club.
Joyce was blessed with a beautiful singing voice and a love of music. She joined a performing chorus of young adults. The president of the chorus, Don Hill immediately caught her eye and soon would capture her heart. After dating for a short four months, they knew that they wanted to be together forever. They were married in the Salt Lake Temple on January 28, 1953.
As a newlywed couple, they lived in the basement of Don’s parents. When they thought that they could never be happier, the Lord added to their joy by blessing them with their first child, Vicki, who was born just 10 months after they were married. More blessings came to them in the form of Susan, Diane, David, Mike, Brent, Becky and Jeff. Eight children in the space of 8 ½ years.
In 1955, they were thrilled when they were able to purchase and move into their own home in Granger Utah. This would be the love filled home where they would raise their family and continue to reside until they both passed on. Joyce loved being at home spending her time and energy raising her growing family. Don’s hard work and their careful budgeting made it possible for Joyce to remain at home with her children until they were all in school. At that time, motivated by her love for children and her desire to supplement the family income, she went to work as a school lunch worker. Later Joyce would work for Aetna Life and Casualty, where she was greatly loved by her co-workers and eventually retired.
Throughout her life as a wife, mother and grandmother, Joyce rendered innumerable hours of selfless service. Never did she place her own needs above the needs of those that she loved. There are few instances where she bought anything for herself, preferring to spend her money on her children. She was able to happily make do on what she had. It didn’t concern her that they were not able to purchase new furniture, she kept her home clean and tidy and exercised her creativity in regularly rearranging the furniture that they had.
She loved preparing delicious meals for her family and enjoyed being visited by family and friends. Everyone was welcome in her home. Caring for others was never a burden to her. Joyce will forever be remembered for her ability to make anyone who came to her home feel welcome and loved.
Music brought Joyce and Don together and they continued to make beautiful music as a couple throughout their lives. They both loved singing often for others, or just with their family. Treasured are the memories of their family bursting into song as they rode together in the family car. Regardless of the length of the journey Don and Joyce always had plenty of songs for the family to sing. Joining their voices in beautiful harmony, they were invited to sing at many family gatherings and funerals. “That Wonderful Mother of Mine”, being a most requested favorite.
In spite of the demands of being the mother of eight children, Joyce was willing to give of her time and talents to serve the Lord, as a devoted member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She served faithfully in many callings including secretary in numerous presidencies. After her children were raised, she felt privileged to serve as Relief Society President of the Granger 10th Ward. She and Don served for two years as missionaries in the Salt Lake City, Utah Mission where they labored in the mission office. She was a special mother figure to and very much loved by all the Elders and Sister missionaries. Her last calling was to serve many years on the Relief Society Compassionate Service Committee, a fitting final assignment for a choice daughter of our Father-in-Heaven whose life was spent from beginning to end, in giving compassionate service.
Her greatest act of service was to tirelessly care for her dear husband in his final years as he suffered and endured the debilitating effects of Alzheimer’s disease and in the end, a brain tumor. Since Don passed away, for the past twelve years she has looked forward with hope and faith to the day when she would be reunited with her eternal companion unencumbered with the weaknesses of the mortal body, in a state of never-ending happiness. We rejoice in knowing that that day has come.
We are comforted to know that our wonderful mother and grandmother has gone on to reap the rewards of a life well-lived, and the riches of eternity await her. She leaves to her posterity a legacy of faithfulness in the gospel of Jesus Christ and love. Joyce will be remembered as a true disciple of Jesus Christ who made each of her decedents better and happier by her example and love. She will be missed beyond measure, but never forgotten.
She is survived by her sister and brother-in-law Mary Ann and Leon Orme; sister- in-law Darlene Maxfield; her children: Vicki (Ron Hancock), Susan (Don Thompson), Diane (Keith Yorgason), David, Michael (Tammy), Brent (Wendy), Becky (John Hauber), Jeff (Kay); and 190 grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren.
Special thanks to many who have blessed her life in the last three weeks, Atlas Home Health, Elevation Hospice, Amy and Shaylyn.
Funeral services will be held Saturday, June 11, 2022, 11:00 a.m. at the Hillsdale Park Ward, 3274 S. Hillsdale Drive (2760 West). Viewings will be Friday 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. at McDougal Funeral Home, 4330 South Redwood Road and Saturday 10:00 – 10:45 a.m. at the church. Interment, Taylorsville Cemetery.
Services may be attended virtually via zoom: https://zoom.us/join
zoom code/ID - 5034038622
passcode - 123456