Joyce Legarza of Winnemucca passed away of natural causes on July 26, reuniting with Ray, her beloved husband of 60 years, who passed on May 6. Joyce was born on Sept. 17, 1927 in Lovelock, Nev., to loving parents Clarence and Clara Stoker. She was the oldest sibling to sisters Dee and Janice and brother Donald. The Stoker family moved from Lovelock to Winnemucca in 1933. The following year they established Stoker's Auto Court, which consisted of a Motel and Gas Station. Even as a young girl Joyce pulled her weight in the family business and quickly established the hard-work ethic that would serve her well throughout her life.

Joyce graduated from Humboldt County High School in 1945 and soon moved to San Francisco to attend Beauty School. Upon returning to Winnemucca, she opened her own Beauty Shop and operated her successful business for most of the next decade.

In 1952, she married the man of her dreams, Raymond Legarza also of Winnemucca. They produced three adoring children - Loni, Jana and Mitch. While Ray was busy as a partner in the Star Broiler, Red Bull and Winner's Inn Casinos, Joyce lovingly raising her young kids. It was an exciting life for the Legarzas - like her husband, Joyce liked to go fast. She took flying lessons - earning her solo certificate, competed in powder puff car racing competitions, spent summer months boating and water skiing, and enjoyed snowmobiling with family and friends during the winter. Joyce was an avid reader who loved to travel and always encouraged her children to broaden their horizons by seeing the world. She also loved to sing and dance - especially to her favorite jazz.

In 1969, Ray and Joyce bought JB Liquors. Joyce managed the business while diligently guiding her children through their high school years. In 1977, after selling the business, Ray and Joyce retired to Willow Creek Ranch - located in the Santa Rosa Mountain Range. They worked passionately on their beautiful property where Joyce focused on home improvements, landscaping projects and caring for the many animals that roamed the property.

After moving back to Winnemucca in 1996, Joyce bravely and graciously battled Alzheimer's disease. With her family gathered around her, she never lost her wonderful sense of humor or her amazing love of life. Joyce's legacy is that of a great mother. Her children and children in-law will be forever grateful for her amazing capacity to love - to never judge harshly - for an incredible sense of fairness and for her tremendous integrity and honesty. She inspired those around her to be better people.

Joyce is survived by daughter Loni and dear friend Jerry Mariluch of Reno, daughter Jana and husband Kenny Bednar of Lake Tahoe, son Mitch and wife Debbie of Lake Tahoe, brother and sister in-law Don and Lillian Stoker of Winnemucca, brother in-law Bob Paige of Colorado Springs. Colo., brother in-law Jerry Legarza and wife Ginger of Laughlin, Nev., and numerous cousins, nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents Clarence and Clara Stoker, husband Ray Legarza, sisters Dee Frensdorff and Janice Paige.

Joyce's wishes included not to have a service. Please have a toast with friends in her honor. In lieu of flowers, a donation may be made to the Alzheimer's Association at 1301 Cordone Avenue, Reno, Nevada 89502.