Published in Kansas City Star on Feb. 14, 2017
Joyce Elaine Huyett
Joyce Elaine Huyett, 84, of Kansas City, Mo., died peacefully on Feb. 11 with family members
by her side. She cherished her role as mother, grandmother and great- grandmother. In
addition to her devotion to family, she found joy as a classical pianist, as an active member of
First Lutheran Church of Mission Hills for more than 40 years and in making favorite recipes for
Born Joyce Elaine Ames in Marietta, Ohio, she was the daughter of Martha Guiler Ames, a
schoolteacher, and Richard Douglas Ames, a preacher, teacher and printer. Some of her
fondest childhood memories were of summers spent on her maternal grandparent's farm in
She met her future husband Charles Huyett at the University of Maryland where they played in
the marching band, she on French horn, and he on cymbals. She delighted in recalling that early
in their relationship they decided they would marry and have six children, and they proceeded to
live their dream with a union that lasted 58 years. She graduated with a music and education
degree and trained as a concert pianist but set aside her potential career to devote herself full
time to family. She continued playing piano throughout her life, at home, in church, at music
clubs and family gatherings. While Charlie pursued a political career as a Democratic state
legislator in Maryland in the 1960s, Joyce worked behind the scenes as his closet advisor and
began raising their children in Hagerstown. She and Charlie attended the inaugural balls of
Presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson.
In 1970 the family moved to Kansas City, where Charlie was a federal civil servant. Joyce was
active in the Moment Musical Club, the American Assn. of University Women and Providing
Educational Opportunities for Women (P.E.O.). She taught music appreciation classes for
seniors at the Shepherd's Center of Kansas City. She and Charlie also traveled the world, from
Hong Kong to St. Petersburg.
She will be remembered for living her Christian faith: kind, caring, generous, humble and
Joyce was preceded in death by Charlie in 2012.
She is survived by her six children, Rick (Frances), Joyce (Craig), Doug (Robin), Julie (Larry),
David (Kim) and Joe (Cresa), fourteen grandchildren and thirteen great-grandchildren.
The memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 18, at First Lutheran Church,
6400 Stateline Road, Mission Hills, with reception to follow.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to the church.