Cover photo for Joyce G. Himmel's Obituary
Joyce G. Himmel Profile Photo

Joyce G. Himmel

December 2, 1940 — December 5, 2023

West Palm Beach

Joyce G. Himmel


Joyce Gailzaid Himmel died peacefully on December 5, 2023 surrounded by family, friends, and her husband of 61 years, Harry Himmel.

Joyce was born in Boston, MA on December 2, 1940 to Lillian (Asarkof) Gailzaid and Melvin Spencer Gailzaid. She lived in Brockton, MA and later in her teen years moved to West Haven, CT, where she met her soon-to-be husband, Harry Himmel. They established their first home in Bethany, CT and soon began their adventures in 1970, moving and traveling around the globe and living in Germany and Venezuela, where they raised their two children. 

Joyce had a spirited personality that always drew friends to her table, whether for a late-night chat or a delicious gourmet meal; their home always had lots of extra seats at the dining room table for expats new and old over the holidays. During her years living in Valencia, Venezuela, Joyce was an active community member of the International Women’s Club and the Player’s Club. She was also an eager volunteer for countless school fundraisers and events at Colegio Internacional de Carabobo. She loved to cook, garden, play mahjong and bridge, knit and go antiquing. She was also a member of Hadassah. When Joyce and Harry returned to the US in 1987, they settled in Richmond, VA, where they made many new friends as they adjusted to their new life. Upon Harry’s retirement in 1998, they moved to south Florida to be closer to family.

Joyce was devoted to her two children and their families. In addition to her husband, Harry of West Palm Beach, FL, she is survived by son, Erik Himmel (Carolina Trujillo) of Palm City, FL; daughter Tracy Himmel Isham (Jonathan Isham) of Cornwall, VT;  grandchildren Laura Himmel, Matthew Himmel, Faith Isham, Catherine (Katie) Isham, and Lillea (Lilybob) Isham. She was devoted too to her dearest friends, Maddy and Ken Klipper, and her godchildren, Jeffrey and Ali Klipper. She was predeceased by her parents and brother, Lee Gailzaid.

The Himmel family would like to offer deep gratitude to the many caregivers that Joyce had including Vanessa Trujillo and the nursing team at Treasure Coast Hospice for their compassionate and empathetic support of Joyce and our family during her final days with us.

The family will hold a celebration of life later in 2024. In lieu of flowers, please donate to a civic organization that spreads love and peace, in equal measure.

To send flowers to the family in memory of Joyce G. Himmel, please visit our flower store.


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