Joyce J. Esenwein, 87, a longtime resident of Exeter Township, but more recently of Amity Place in Douglassville, and for the last year a resident of the Berks Heim, passed away peacefully Saturday, May 9, 2020 at the Reading Hospital with her family by her side. The family is comforted in knowing that she is now reunited in eternal life with the love of her life, husband Otto G. Esenwein, with whom she shared 64 years of marriage, and who predeceased her in April of 2017.
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Born on June 7, 1932 in Reading, PA, she was the daughter of the late George F. and Emma E. (Gottschall) Babb and grew up on their small farm in Stony Creek Mills. In her younger years, Joyce loved to ride horses and was known affectionately to her family as Dolly. She was a graduate of Mt. Penn High School in 1950.
In her earlier years, Joyce worked at the Berkshire Knitting Mills making stockings, then as an ice cream soda fountain server at a downtown Reading drug store before moving on to Pretzel Products. She then found the occupation she loved the most, that of being a mother and homemaker. After her children were older, Joyce had a brief career at Boscov’s Department Stores.
Joyce was a lifetime member of Zion Spies Evangelical Lutheran Church, singing on the church choir, organizing and training the acolyte and crucifer corps, teaching Sunday School in the nursery class before becoming superintendent of that age group, and holding the position of Vacation Bible School Director, a position she loved and fully dedicated herself to for a number of years.
Later in life, Joyce's grandchildren became the focus of her adoring attention. Never was a football, basketball, baseball or soccer game her grandchildren played in missed, until it simply became too difficult for her to attend in person; but then she still always wanted a full game report when the game was over. Joyce always loved to gather as a family, and family events were always special to her.
Joyce is survived by her two sons Greg O. of Reading, and Glen E., husband of Tracy A. of Amity; and two grandchildren, Tyler and Kaitlyn.
Due to current public health restrictions, a private memorial service will be held on Thursday, May 14th at 11:00 AM and will be LIVE streamed on Lutz's website at www.LutzFuneralHome.com. Internment, with a private graveside service, will be immediately following in Spies-Zion Cemetery, Alsace Township.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Zion Spies Ev. Lutheran Church Memorial Fund at 310 Spies Church Road, Reading, PA 19606.
Lutz Funeral Home, Inc., Mount Penn, is in charge of arrangements. For online condolences, please visit www.LutzFuneralHome.com.