Home Obituaries Obituary: Martha Joyce McKay

Obituary: Martha Joyce McKay


Martha Joyce McKay of Story, Arkansas passed away on December 15, 2017. She was 82. She was born on May 5, 1935 in Hot Springs, Arkansas to Stephen Lester “Less” Goodner and Willie Katherine “Kate” (Fisher) Goodner.

She is preceded in death by her parents, her husband of 44 years, William D. “Bill” McKay, and four brothers: William “Bill Ed” McKenney, John Goodner, Timothy Goodner, and Jerry Goodner.

Joyce is survived by her children Terry Harrod (spouse: Chris), Kathy James (spouse: Tony), Kim Hazelbaker (spouse: Jeffery), and John McKay. She is also survived by five grandchildren: Amy Harrod, Amber Brown, Cody Harrod, Chase Battle- Smith, and Jessica James. Great-grandchildren: Anna, Alyssa, Jayden, Katie June, and Conner. Her siblings: Steve Goodner, Tom Goodner, and Tyna Millecci as well as numerous nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends.

Pallbearers include Terry McKay, Kenny McKay, Stacy McKay, Charles McKenney, Jimmy Abernathy, Jimmy John Black. Honorary pallbearers are Sammy Jones, Jimmy Smith, and David White.

She was called Gaga, first by her grandchildren and, later, by almost everyone she met. She was always an excellent cook and baker. Gaga’s bread was a staple at every family gathering as was her various cookies, pies, and desserts, particularly her blackberry cobbler. Everyone she loved knew Gaga’s kitchen served the best food around.

She loved books and regularly read aloud at evening time to her children, grandchildren, and others. She taught her children to read and love books at an early age.

Joyce was independent, strong-willed, a perfectionist, and possessed a great sense of humor. She only ever saw the good in every person she met and never had an unpleasant word to say of anyone and would never refuse to do a kindness or offer aid to anyone in need.

Joyce died peacefully at home after a short battle with cancer surrounded by loving family and friends.

Service will be held Tuesday, December 19, 2017 at Prairie Grove Church in Story, Arkansas at 10:00 AM officiated by Bro. Ed DePriest. Interment will follow at Lee Cemetery.

Arrangements were under the direction of Thornton Funeral Home of Mount Ida, AR. Guest register at www.thorntonfh.com.

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