Joyce E. South

Joyce Elaine Myhre (Russell) South, who passed away May 8, 2017, was born at home on a farm in Kindred, North Dakota on a cold winter night, Jan. 4, 1928, to J. Milton Myhre and Avis Bjierke Myhre. Joyce was the oldest of three children: Maxine Myhre Torgerson (Fargo, North Dakota) and Robert Myhre (formerly of Rugby, North Dakota).

She graduated from Kindred High School in 1946, and moved to Bozeman, where she worked as a telephone operator. In 1947, she met and married a handsome young sailor who had returned from World War II named Norman Russell. For the next 24 years, they made their home in Bozeman, and Norman worked for the Montana Power Company before moving to Detroit Lakes, Minnesota, where he continued his profession by working for Detroit Lakes Public Utilities. After Norman’s death in 1971, Joyce returned to Bozeman, where she began a new life, marrying David South in 1973.

For many years, Joyce was in business with her husband, David; she was involved in day to day activities of Dave’s Key Shop and also served as bookkeeper until their retirement. They loved spending weekends and holidays with family at their cabin along the Gallatin River, where they cooked big breakfasts — sourdough pancakes, bacon, and eggs — on a wood stove! Together with Dave, Joyce enjoyed traveling to Florida to visit her folks in Bradenton at Lake Buena Vista and to Hawaii to visit Dave’s nephew. They took a special Anniversary Cruise to Alaska, and also toured Italy, visiting a WWII Memorial which commemorated a battle in which Dave’s Company had participated.

100 percent Norwegian, Joyce was active for many years in the Bozeman Sons of Norway, making lefse, krum kake, rosettes, and other tasty Norwegian delights for holiday dinners. A member for many years at Hope Lutheran Church in Bozeman and First Lutheran Church in Detroit Lakes, Joyce took part in the Women’s Circles. When her children were young, Joyce grew a big garden, canning vegetables and fruits every season. Joyce was interested in holistic health and continued learning about nutrition and natural foods throughout her life. She was admired by her children and friends for her baking, cooking, and sewing; and made special afghans as gifts. Her homemade pies were legendary, especially the apple and the rhubarb! In addition to traveling to visit her children and grandchildren, Joyce was a loving caregiver to several long-standing friends who suffered illness later in life.

During 2013-14, Joyce spent time living at BirchHaven Village in Bemidji, Minnesota to be near her daughter, Dr. Carol Ann Russell, and to attend the musical programs, concerts, and plays of her youngest grandchildren, Josef and Zoey. She has been living at the Bozeman Lodge with her devoted husband, Dave, up to the present, where they enjoyed attending Sunday church services together. Joyce was a treasured mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother, a woman who was interested in everyone she met, learning their individual stories and loving her conversations with each of them at evening dinners. She and Dave had a little family member, a dog named Molly, who brightened their lives.

Joyce South is survived by her husband of 44 years, David South, a longtime resident and business owner in Bozeman; her three children, Mrs. Charlotte Rodriguez-Ortiz of Edgeley, North Dakota, Dr. Carol Ann Russell-Wething (David) of Bemidji, Minnesota, and John Russell (Carina) of Livingston; six grandchildren, Micah Johnson Duemig (Peter) of Matthews, North Carolina, Joshua G. Johnson of San Diego, California, Cara Russell of Livingston, Evan Russell (Anna Mclain) of Vienna, Virginia, Josef Schlemper of Bemidji, Minnesota, and Zoey Schlemper of Kirkland, Washington; and three great-grandchildren, James Russell, Logan Duemig, and Anna Duemig. She loved each of us, and loved having her family over for Christmas dinners and other family celebrations throughout the years. Joyce made friends of all ages. She was a great lady who left an indelible memory on her family, and we will always remember our talks with her, and the sound of her voice.

Two hours before her passing, Joyce looked up and said, “I thought Norwegians could do anything! I was wrong!” The family would like to thank Bozeman Health for the excellent care given to our mother, which allowed her to have precious time over two wonderful days to visit and share with each of us.

Memorial Services will be held at 11 a.m. on Friday, May 12 at the Hope Lutheran Church.

Memorial Donations can be sent to Hope Lutheran Church, 2152 Graf St., Bozeman, MT 59718.

Arrangements are in the care of Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service,