Joyce (Mitchell) Bianculli was born on November 11, 1922 in the City of Deptford, London England to Syd and May Mitchell. Joyce was the eldest of four children. Her siblings were Ronald Philip, Dennis Reginald and Norma Jean who, along with Syd and May, all preceded her in death.

Joyce lived the majority of her young years in Welling, England where she attended school and spent time with her family and friends. She loved their summertime trips to the nearby beaches of Littlehampton and Brighton.

During WWII, Joyce served in Britain’s Women’s Royal Navy Service (W.R.N.S), where she served as an assistant to high ranking naval officials. Joyce met Vito Bianculli, Jr. at a restaurant during his stay in London while he was preparing to serve in the D-Day invasion of Normandy. They were married on March 24th 1945 in Dartford. After the war, Joyce made the long voyage from England to Ellis Island in the U.S. on the Queen Mary and then via train across the country to Los Banos, California. There, they lived with Vito’s parents for a short while, until they found a place to live on their own. Joyce, Vito and their baby daughter Cynthia moved to Dos Palos in 1950 when Vito began work at Whitehurst Funeral Chapel.

Joyce had an exceptional singing voice. She would sing at church services, weddings and would perform at community clubs. She even “cut” several records in England at the local record shop. She also had a natural talent for drawing and was particularly adept drawing the many bomber and fighter planes flying over London during the war. She even performed in Community Theater – notably in the play Oklahoma!  Joyce loved decorating her house and dressing up for Halloween – scaring kids was her specialty! She loved flowers and gardening. Above all, she was almost known worldwide for her rice pudding, sausage rolls and tea and toast!

Joyce had three children – Cynthia Burns (Robert), Veronica Woodruff (John) and Barry Bianculli (Nancy). Joyce had twelve adoring grandchildren, twenty loving great-grandchildren and one delightful great-great grandchild.  Family was important to Joyce. She would always look forward to and enjoy family gatherings. She was always happy to see you and greet you with a big hug and a smile. She would make each person feel special and loved. Joyce enjoyed babysitting her multiple grandchildren and great grandchildren as well as her “unofficial” grandchildren.

Over the years, Joyce worked at various locations in Dos Palos, including Bank of America, Carrol Olds Photo Studio, Signal Oil Company, the Dos Palos Star and the County of Merced/Los Banos.

Joyce lived in Dos Palos for 68 years until moving to Clovis for 4 years for healthcare assistance. She died on May 3, 2023 at the age of 100 years, 5 months and 22 days. Funeral services will be held at the Whitehurst Funeral Chapel, 2350 Blossom Street, Dos Palos CA on May 19, 2023. Viewing will start at 11:00 am and services will start at 12:00 noon. Following the services, Joyce will be laid to rest at the Dos Palos Cemetery, 1800 Elgin Avenue, Dos Palos CA. A celebration will follow, the location of which is to be announced.

The Westside Express