Cover photo for Joyce Lee Backus's Obituary
Joyce Lee Backus Profile Photo
1935 Joyce 2024

Joyce Lee Backus

December 12, 1935 — March 27, 2024

Elk Grove, CA

Joyce Backus, passed away peacefully in her sleep, after a hard fought battle with cancer.
At the time of her death she was surrounded by three of her five daughters and one of her beloved grandchildren. Mom was 88 years young.
Joyce was born on December 12, 1935 at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, TX, to Percy and Doris Roberts.
She was always proud of being a Texan and took her kids and grandkids on several road trips to Texas over the years, creating great memories. Even though she and her five girls moved to California in 1967, she never forgot her roots in Texas.
Joyce is survived by her five daughters and their families, Mary Duplat (Claude), Sandi Johnson (Peter), Claudia Daniels, Audrey Annette Marshall, Kathleen Sweeney (Bobby).
She is also survived by her beloved grandchildren, Lindsey Clark (Erik Maass), Eric Lichtenberger (Linda), Kristina Kunz (Derek Hames), Alexa Weiner (Kevin), Cheryl Hooper (Todd), Rocky Labrasca, Roman Bambula, Kaitlyn Thorne (Deven), James Sweeney (Megan) and 14 great grandchildren.
Joyce was preceded in death by her precious first-born granddaughter, Lorna Clark.
As a teenager she lived in a boarding school in San Antonio, Texas, and attended Jefferson High School until age 16, leaving in her sophomore year to get married.
Joyce defied the odds. Later in life she earned her GED and continued on to earn an AA degree from Cosumnes River College, all while raising five daughters. She was able buy a home on her own in 1972 in Elk Grove, California. She was able to get a credit card in her own name as a single woman in 1974. Nothing stopped her from reaching her goals. She was proud of being able to accomplish so much on her own and we were proud of her, too.
Before moving to California she worked for the US Post Office in Houston, Texas for eight years. Once she moved to Sacramento in 1967, she worked for Mercy Hospital for three years. she then worked for the
California Franchise Tax Board, followed by the State Department of Justice, as a Fingerprint Analyst, until she retired. Because she loved working she later returned to DOJ as a retired annuitant, working for another 12 years for a total of 39 years with the State of California.
Mom traveled all over the USA on organized walks. She took her grandkids on several of the walks. She walked with the “Walking Sticks”, the “American Volkssport Association” and the “Bad Pennies”, which organized walks in Canada’s East Coast, St Edward’s Island, Finland and Iceland.
Joyce was vivacious, funny and unforgettable. Her humor and love of life were contagious.
Our mom, Joyce, was dearly loved by her family and friends. She always had a great story to tell and love to share. She always left a lasting impression on everyone that met her. We all miss her dearly.
Services to celebrate Joyce’s life will be held on April 11, 2024 at 10 a.m. at East Lawn, Elk Grove Memorial Park, 9189 E. Stockton Blvd. Elk Grove, CA
There will be a visitation at that location on Wednesday, April 10th from 5-8 p.m.
A reception will be held following the services at Wackford Community Center, 9014 Bruceville Rd. Elk Grove, CA. All are welcome. Flowers are appreciated or a donation in her honor to the American Cancer Society.

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Service Schedule

Past Services


Wednesday, April 10, 2024

5:00 - 8:00 pm (Pacific time)

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Funeral Service

Thursday, April 11, 2024

Starts at 10:00 am (Pacific time)

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