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Obituaries » Joy Lou Tomlinson

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July 22, 1933 - October 27, 2022

The family is planning a private celebration of Joy’s life. Memorial contributions may be made St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital or Centrica Care Navigators, c/o the funeral home.

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Age 89, passed away Thursday morning, October 27, 2022. Joy was born in Kalamazoo on July 22, 1933, the daughter of Bruce and Joyce (Jubb) Cook. On January 23, 1954, she married Philip Knight Tomlinson who preceded her in death in 2020. They enjoyed 66 years of marriage. She had met him in 1948, on the Lake Michigan shore in Saugatuck, where both families had summer homes. Joy and Philip enjoyed spending winters in Naples, FL, and summers in Saugatuck, boating on Lake Michigan. Phil being a sign painter, once painted “JoyPhilFour” on the back of the boat, as a nod to the family. Prior to meeting Phil she had graduated from Sullivan High School in Chicago and studied music at Wright Junior College and the American Conservatory of Music. She also studied painting and sculpting at the Art Institute of Chicago. She sculpted a bust of Phil that truly caught his essence. Joy was a stay-at-home mom for her sons and she loved her music, art and most of all, her family. She worked at First of America Bank as an Administrative Assistant for 22 years. Joy was a truly perfect name for her, as she brought her light to all whom she met. Joy had a voice like honey and with any chance she got, she would break out into song. She had a role as “Rose” in the 1974 Kalamazoo Civic production of “Hello Dolly”, and she outshined the lead actress. Joy will be missed by family and friends, but when you think of Joy, you can’t help but feel her presence. Joy is survived by her son Peter (Houston Sams) Tomlinson of Los Angeles, CA; grandchildren, Matthew, George, Lynn and Rex; her special great-granddaughter, Mya; sister, Cathy Mecray of Lopez Island, WA; several nieces and nephews; and countless friends, including special friends, Terry Miller and Lynda Smith. Besides her husband, Joy was preceded in death by her parents; her beloved sons, Cooper Tomlinson, Bruce Tomlinson, and George Tomlinson; sister, Marilyn Cook.