Yesterday was a day of as many emotions as you could think of. As a family, we knew that this final goodbye would be the hardest, the one which we would have to drawer every ounce of strength for.
Arriving at the church, we were told that the church was almost full. Over a hundred friends and family had braved the cold to show their love for this incredible lady. We were overwhelmed.
Four grandsons carried Nanny into the church, which she would have loved. Her eulogy, a poem about laughter and a reading about love were all read by family members. None of us wanted a stranger saying our words for us. It was far too important.
A windy graveside farewell, with tears and red roses, and another poem before we slowly walked away, leaving her in the care of our Grandad.
And then, as the friends gathered around us, photographs were pulled out of jacket pockets and stories told. She was back in the room with us, brought alive again by love and shared memories.
I can't give you the whole eulogy, but here are the final words...
'Looking back on Joyce’s life, her loves were the simple ones, which cost very little, if in fact anything. To be surrounded by her family was enough for her, and in her last weeks we ensured that we kept her smiling right to the end, wrapping her up in the love she so deserved.
So when you think of Joyce, remember the much loved wife of Charlie, the beautiful mum to Sandra and Jan, the doting Nanna to Tony, Sue, Kelly and me, and the gentle Nanny Joyce to her great grandchildren, James, Georgia, Gaby, Ollie, Elliot and Charlie.
She takes with her a little bit of each of our hearts, and we give that gladly.
She was perfect. And we are all a little closer to perfection having had her in our lives'
We will miss you...