I came to know Joyce about 60 years ago when she married my elder brother. From that day until her demise I have not seen her without a smile. She had the ability to take life with a smile, humming a tune or cracking a joke.
She was never a daughter-in-law, sister-in-law or a mother-in-law, but a loving daughter, sister and mother. This was quite evident in her only daughter in-law in Sri Lanka, Ayomi, who loved her and was of great support to my niece Nilu, Joyce’s only daughter in Sri Lanka. Here I will be failing in my duty as an uncle if I do not express how supportive and cooperative the three children abroad and the son in Sri Lanka have been.
At my nephew’s birthday party on February 4 where one of the daughters from Australia was present, I recall how happy sister Joyce was. As usual she was enjoying the music and though she was not well enough to dance or sing she was keeping time to the music.
She had a marvellous voice and had been trained by Spencer Sheperd. She had led the St Anne’s church choir for many years. She took part in many charitable and social activities; she was the President of St Vincent De Paul’s society and Vice Principal of St Anne’s Convent, Wattala.
She passed away on April 8 and her remains were laid to rest in their family burial grounds at Wattala on the 12th.
Hope we will meet once again with our Creator and Mary the mother of God and listen to you singing the “Ave Maria.”
May you rest in peace.
Maurice. A. Perera