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Joy Smith

The campus community mourns the passing of Joy Smith, who died on Wednesday, May 2.  Joy served as secretary in the Office of the Provost and worked at Bucknell for 20 years before retiring in 1982.

Included below is the complete text of the obituary, as provided by the family.

You are encouraged to visit our In Memoriam Site at and share personal notes of sympathy and remembrance with others.

On behalf of our entire University community, I extend our deepest sympathies to Joy’s family, as well as to all who knew her at Bucknell.

John C. Bravman


Joy Louise Smith, 92, died Wednesday, May 2, 2018 at the Rockwell Center, Turbot Avenue, Milton, of natural causes.

Mrs. Smith, was predeceased by her husband Dick in February 2017.

She was born Aug. 10, 1925, the youngest of three children of Leone and Samuel Wagner of Milton.

Joy attended Milton schools, graduating from Milton High School, where she was a majorette in the band and met her future husband. She attended Bucknell University in Lewisburg.

After her marriage, Joy and her husband lived on South Third Street in West Milton. There, she helped raise their four sons as well as a flower garden.

She was a member of the West Milton Garden Club and won many blue ribbons during the club’s annual flower shows with her colorful arrangements of her husband’s grand gladiolas.

Joy had a lovely soprano voice, which graced the weekly cantatas and hymns sung by the adult choir at Trinity Lutheran Church in Milton, which the family attended. She also sang in the Susquehanna Valley Chorale and was a chorus member in many of the musical theater productions staged locally by MATOTA. She always had a song in her heart; it was not unusual to hear her humming and singing to herself while engaged in housework.

With all of her sons in public schools, Joy took a job at Bucknell University as secretary to the provost of the university. As the chief gatekeeper to the provost, she came to be well known for her graciousness and professionalism by the faculty members who came and went for meetings with her boss. She worked there until her retirement.

Joy was a consummate baker, plying her confectionery skills to an assortment of pies, cakes, cookies, and puddings. She liked nothing better than for her husband or sons to pick a pail of wild elderberries, which she would fashion into a delectable pie. Her sugar cookies and berry pies attained to legendary status within the family.

Joy loved games of all kinds. She was a member of several card clubs that met regularly in members’ homes to play pinochle, canasta and bridge. And no vacation in Ocean City, N.J., was complete in her eyes unless the family played several of the miniature golf courses that dotted the boardwalk. She also was an inveterate Boggler who would beseech family members to join her in playing the popular word game. In her later years, she devoured crossword puzzle books, which she often completed with her husband at her side offering suggestions.

With the oldest boys in college, the family moved to a home on Wilson Circle in the North Hills of Milton. She lived there until she and her husband moved into The Rockwell Center in 2016.

After her retirement, Joy became an even more avid reader than she had been in her younger days. She sometimes made the trip between her Milton home and the public library on Front Street on foot to pick up books, many of them the mysteries that she particularly enjoyed. Family members joked that she finally stopped going to the library because she had read every book in its collections.

She is survived by three sons, Mark, of Nashville, Tenn., Stephen, of Mount Laurel, N.J., and Timothy, of Towson, Md., and their wives, Deborah Berwyn, Michele, and Jane Santoni Smith, respectively. She also is survived by five grandchildren, Gregory, Daniel, Christie, Hope and Julianna Smith; and one great-grandchild, Viola Joy Smith.

Besides her husband, she was predeceased by her siblings, brother, Samuel and sister, June, and her son, Thomas.

Friends and relatives will be received from 1 to 2 p.m. Saturday, May 12, at Trinity Lutheran Church, 100 Mahoning St., Milton, followed by the funeral at 2, with the Rev. Mark Galbraith officiating.

Burial will follow in Milton Cemetery.

Arrangements are under the care of the Shaw Funeral Home, 400 N. Front St., Milton.

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