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“Mrs. Sucaet was the single best teacher and role model I was blessed to learn from. I gratefully carried her spirit with me into the classroom every...Read More »
1 of 8 | Posted by: MaryJo Cobb - Vicksburg, MI

“My thoughts and prayers are with the Sucaet family. ”
2 of 8 | Posted by: Nancy (Tessmer) VanThomme - NV

“I was one of the many, many students who were truly blessed to be taught by Mrs. Sucaet at St. Clement. Her passion for teaching was obvious...she...Read More »
3 of 8 | Posted by: A friend

“One of my most favorite teachers at St Clement.I'll never forget her reading to us a very long sentence, it seemed to go on forever with pure timing,...Read More »
4 of 8 | Posted by: Marian Arnott - MI

“Love from your old neighbors,Gene,Rachel,Grant and Brittany ”
5 of 8 | Posted by: Ulysses and Rachel Simpkins

“Mrs. Sucaet was by far, one of my favorite teachers at St Clement. She not only taught us the basics, but my best memories were discussing current...Read More »
6 of 8 | Posted by: Barb Craig - Huntington Woods, MI

“Joyce was married to my cousin, Joe. She was a gracious and a very sweet, dear lady. Incidentally, she sang at my wedding fifty-eight years ago. ...Read More »
7 of 8 | Posted by: Irene Talbot - Presque Isle, MI

“Joyce was an amazing woman! Strong, passionate, loving, caring, and much more. Words can't explain the relationship we had. She will be truly missed....Read More »
8 of 8 | Posted by: Kristy Lazarov - Scottsdale, AZ


Joyce Lucretia Sucaet, age 92, died Sunday, June 24, 2018 at Fraser Villa Nursing Home in Fraser. Joyce was born January 3, 1926 in Three Rivers, Michigan, daughter of the late Clive Byron and the late Edith Leota (nee: Rifenberg) Rockwell.

When it came time for contemplating what career path she would embark upon, there was no question in Joyce's mind that teaching was the her "Field of Dreams." So following her high school years, Joyce made a bee-line for Michigan State University where she majored in teaching and eventually received her Bachelor's Degree in Education.

With documents in hand, her dream began being realized when she took her first position as a teacher at Lincoln High School in Warren. Helping to equip her rooms full of teenagers for their world's ahead brought her immense joy and reward. But her time at Lincoln brought her something even more special when she met the man who would sweep her off her feet, the dashing Joseph G. Sucaet. Friendship turned to romance, and romance led them to the altar where they were married on February 7, 1952 in Angola, Indiana. She and Joseph were blessed to share 30 wonderful years together, as well as welcoming their beautiful son, Joseph G. Sucaet Jr. into the world.

Not long after sharing their wedding vows, the newlyweds decided to move back to Michigan where they settled in the quaint little town of Corey, very close to where she was born. It is there that Joyce accepted her second teaching position at a one-room schoolhouse, living out the realities of the famed Laura Ingalls-Wilder. Joyce enjoyed her unique teaching experience there until, in 1958, she and Joseph decided on their third move to the burgeoning bedroom community of Warren, Michigan. This led to her third teaching position at St. Clement Catholic School in Center Line. Over the next ten years, Joyce's teaching would involve a few breaks which included giving birth to her children and seeing them through some of their formative years. In 1968, she returned to teaching full time which ensued for the next 21 years. Within that time, Joyce was proud to have served, albeit briefly, as the school's principal. After many years of teaching excellence and devoted service, Joyce finally accepted her well-deserved retirement in 1989.

Perhaps most telling and memorable in her tenure as an teacher was a motto Joyce authored that defined her heart as an educator that reads; "For every child I taught I became enriched by their learning. If I couldn't guide them in the right way, there was plenty of room to show them by example." Joyce always made time for all who came to her house to learn, and considered it a blessing for each opportunity she was afforded to teach.

Not only a lifelong teacher, Joyce was also a lifelong learner,…which explained her penchant for reading. She loved to read and welcomed each opportunity she had to curl up with a good book and get lost in its pages. Whether for educative purposes or merely a fun read, Joyce immersed herself in whatever the genre and came away enriched even more. Speaking of being enriched, it was at the age of 46 that Joyce decided to become a member of the Alpha Delta Kappa sorority, a sisterhood that she coveted for the remainder of her life.

Joyce was a huge lover of animals, and also that of nature. Being enveloped by the beauty of the outdoors seemed to wrap her in a unique sense of comfort, and clothed her like a warm and cozy blanket. And in mentioning being clothed, Joyce possessed a unique and genuine understanding of fabrics and how they were put together. From the various weaving methods to the materials utilized, she was fascinated by how they all came together and formed such a unique bond. And for those who truly knew Joyce, they'll attest to how she loved to sing,…especially when it came to the iconic tunes, "Ave Maria" and "O Holy Night."

Along with other pastimes she enjoyed, Joyce always had room for some of her sporting pleasures which included her favorite Boys of Summer, the Detroit Tigers, and all-things-sports when it involved Michigan State University. True to the Green & White, there was no greater supporter or banner waver of her alma mater, MSU, than Joyce. Her love of sports harkens back to her childhood at a time when Joyce was extremely athletic. Those sporting pleasures are what led to her avid & lifetime support of the Olympics,…and the amazing opportunity and memories enjoyed in attending the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, Georgia.

At 16 years of age, Joyce was stricken with polio, a disease she carried throughout her life, but never squelched her abilities or desires. With a unique strength and resilience that led the way, Joyce plodded on each day with the stamina of the Olympian's she so revered. As a person with polio, Joyce would eventually become aware of the organization, the Americans with Disabilities Act, (A.D.A.). A civil rights law enacted in 1990 to prohibit discrimination of those with disabilities, Joyce was as much an avid spokeswoman for the organization as she was its advocate.

Yet of all Joyce held most dear, family reigned supreme. From the meals she loved to cook which were always the tasty results of the magic performed in her kitchen,…to the joy she amassed each time she sat with her grandchildren to play a game,…each moment spent in the company of loved ones was nothing short of treasured. Now, mind you,…all that game playing with Grandma came with a healthy dose of her competitive spirit,…and you truly had to earn your win. She didn't just let you win or give the game away.

A loving wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, Joyce leaves behind a legacy of love that is sure to bring a smile and fond remembrance with each reflection shared,…especially in the devotion and care extended to her dearest and only son, Joseph G.

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