OBITUARY

Joy Claire (Hemphill) DeCoursey

January 18, 1945November 17, 2020
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Joy Claire (Hemphill) DeCoursey, age 75, of Leawood, Kansas passed away peacefully on Tuesday, November 17th, 2020 due to complications of Alzheimer’s and COVID-19.

Joy was born on January 18, 1945 in Clay Center, KS to Colonel James Eugene and Dorothy Hemphill. Her father served proudly as a plastic surgeon for the U.S. Army, so she moved frequently and traveled the world throughout her childhood. Joy attended the University of Colorado in Boulder where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree. She subsequently went on to serve as a flight attendant and crew trainer for Trans World Airlines (TWA) for 20 years. She was proud of her role as a founding member of the board of directors at the TWA Museum in Kansas City, MO. Joy was elegant, lovely and kind. She had a passion for volunteering, engaging in her children’s and grandchildren’s activities, music, traveling and gardening.

She is survived by her devoted husband of 51 years, Thomas DeCoursey; her two children Matthew DeCoursey (Jill) and Robin DeCoursey Jenson (Chris); her 4 grandchildren Taylor Joy Jenson, Dylan Claire DeCoursey, Laurel Ann Jenson, and Cayden Thomas DeCoursey; her sister Bonnie Olafson (Jim); as well as many nieces and nephews. She was adored by all who knew her.

Due to the pandemic, funeral services will be restricted to family only on Saturday, November 21st, 2020 at 10:00am at Church of the Nativity in Leawood, KS. The funeral mass will be available on live stream broadcast at https://kcnativity.org/ beginning at 9:55 am CST. A public visitation will not occur due to the risk of COVID and the family’s desire to keep loved ones in the community safe.

The family asks in lieu of flowers or gifts that donations be made to Catholic Charities of Northeast Kansas at https://catholiccharitiesks.org/donate/.

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  • Mass of Christian Burial

    Saturday, November 21, 2020

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Joy Claire (Hemphill) DeCoursey

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Douglas Criner

November 22, 2020

Sarah, I, and our sons, David and Joel, lived across the street on Pembroke Circle. We have many fond memories of Joy and her family.

Sean DeCoursey

November 21, 2020

I always remember Aunt Joy's reactions at Thanksgiving when the other cousins and I would recount our various adventures at college and in early adulthood. She just had this kind of non-plussed mellow attitude about everything that was really refreshing and made it incredibly easy to talk to her.

Patrick Dunn

November 21, 2020

I have known Joy for many years and feel sorry for the entire family during this difficult time. Maybe Joy have her angel's wings and be at peace in heaven! God Bless her children Matt & Robin and their families and of course her husband Tom. God Bless each of you!

Jill DeCoursey

November 20, 2020

I’m so blessed to have been Joy’s daughter-in-law. She immediately welcomed me into the family with open arms and unconditional love.

Between her stories, singing, interest in you, kindness, hospitality, contagious laugh, and her love — It was impossible to be around Joy WITHOUT a smile on your face as she was the very definition of her own name.

To Joy - I’m saddened that we didn’t have many years together as mother and daughter-in-law, but I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for raising such a wonderful, intelligent, and strong son for me to one day marry (as well as a kind and loving daughter to be one of my best friends). From the memories he shares and the person he has become, I can tell you were an absolutely fantastic mother. I can only hope to be half as good a mother to your grandchildren, Dylan and Cayden.

You were a gift to the world and now you are a gift in heaven. I am comforted to know you are now at peace as you watch over your loving husband, children, and grandchildren from now on. We all love you and will miss you always. XOXO

joyce DeCoursey

November 20, 2020

I am 84 years old. I have only used this term one other time. Joy was a Steel Magnolia
A strong beautiful woman.

Mary Frisch

November 20, 2020

Joy and I were roommates when we worked for TWA. She was smart and witty and kind. Joy had a great sense of humor. Joy earned a place in Frisch family lore because she set me up on a blind date with Joel Frisch! When the grandkids ask how Joel and I met, I tell them the story about Joy setting us up. Joel and I just celebrated our 52nd anniversary. Thank you, Joy! God bless this family!

Phil Farnan

November 20, 2020

my heart goes out to the family, especially Robin (whom i knew the best)
losing a parent is never easy, no matter when/how it happens
prayers in progress for all of the family
May God grant all of you peace and strength during this difficult time.

Jean McElroy

November 20, 2020

My heart is so sad! Joy was one of my very best friends. We were true soul mates. I will love her forever and never ever forget the bond we shared. Special heartfelt love and condolences to Tom, Robin, Matt and the family. God be with you❤️

Robin Jenson

November 20, 2020

My mom had it all. She was kind and thoughtful. She was loving and caring. She was brilliant and passionate. She was vibrant and present. She was poised and elegant. She was gracious and graceful. She stood up for her beliefs. She loved in every way imaginable. She gave her family and her friends her all.

We are sad but also fulfilled knowing that she loved each of us with everything she had to the very end.

Goodbye, Mom. Thank you for showing me through the life you lived what it is to be a good person. Thank you for being the most incredible role model to me. Thank you for loving us all unconditionally. I love you and I miss you dearly.

Matt DeCoursey

November 19, 2020

My mother was a truly kind person. Her positive, welcoming, and loving nature left a lasting impression on everyone that knew or met her.

I have so many positive memories of my mom that it's hard to narrow them down. As a child, she read book after book after book to my sister and me. She insisted that both of us learn how to play musical instruments on some level, and even though we never became accomplished musicians, that influence contributed to the passion that I personally have for music.

In regards to music, you didn't have to be near or around my mom for too long to either hear her singing a song, or dancing to one, usually a combination of both. Still to this day, I can sing all of the words to many of her favorite songs.

While her memory faded in the later years of her life, I can say with confidence that the memories we have of her certainly won't. With her passing, one point of comfort that I have is the thought of her singing, dancing and smiling for all of eternity. For those in heaven, I hope you like the Beatles, Simon and Garfunkel, ABBA and Tom Petty, because you're certainly already singing and dancing with her already, and will be for eternity.

I love you Mom.

FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
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FROM THE FAMILY

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