Annie Joyce Lambert Westermark

Published 11:38 am Monday, October 21, 2013

Annie Joyce Lambert Westmark, of Tallahassee, Fla., passed away peacefully at home, surrounded by her family, on Oct. 16, 2013.

Joyce was two months away from her 80th birthday. She had struggled with COPD for several years and bravely fought to continue a full and vibrant life following her diagnosis. With her husband of 57 years, Wayne, they were active members of Immanuel Baptist Church and the senior adult ministry.

Joyce, known by her family and friends as “Nana,” was born in Vocation, Ala., to Andrew and Lilla Lambert. She grew up in and around Atmore until she left for nursing school at Sacred Heart Hospital in Pensacola, Fla. There she attended East Hill Baptist Church and met the love of her life. When you ask her husband, Wayne, he’ll gladly tell you that he looked across the room and saw “the most beautiful woman I’d ever seen.” They were subsequently married on June 2, 1956, and celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in 2006 at Apalachicola’s Gibson Inn, surrounded by many family and friends.

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Wayne and Joyce moved to Tallahassee in 1956 for Wayne to attend Florida State University. Their two daughters were born here. Joyce worked for “old Dr. Holland” as his office nurse. There she made many friends, especially Linda Bass, and Annette Jackson. In Dublin, Ga., their son was born; later, they moved to Valdosta, Ga., then back to Tallahassee, Fla.

From Tallahassee, their love of adventures led them to Oyster Bay Estates in Wakulla County. As an avid lover of fishing, crabbing, camping and water play, Joyce excelled at making the lives of her family be one adventure after another. She could be found emptying crab traps, walking across the St. Mark flats for scallops, cooking amazing seafood, or dressing for the governor’s ball. She was the epitome of a sweet Southern lady.

When her children left the nest, Wayne and Joyce moved back to Tallahassee to Shalibeau Farm, a working horse farm, that later turned into a ratite farm until she and her husband retired so they could travel. They loved the mountains of northern Georgia, especially around Blairsville where they kept a vacation lot and RV. Though always a nurse, Joyce loved her three children (and grandchildren) most. She always felt lucky that she was able to stay at home most of her children’s lives. It wasn’t until the 1970s that she decided to return to work fulltime and became the Director of Nursing for Tallahassee Convalescent Home. The 12 years she worked at TCH were some of the sweetest, most fun years of her career. Her last years as a Registered Nurse were spent with the Department of Labor as a Nurse Consultant.

Her grandchildren named her “Nana,” and later in life that became what she was exclusively known by. Nana loved her family, she loved Scrabble and UpWords, she loved Christmas, she loved yard sales, and she loved her Lord. She was amazingly talented and enjoyed driftwood art, painting rock and shell people, decorating gourds and creating still life images in ostrich, emu, and rhea eggs.

She is survived by her loving husband, Wayne Westmark; her three children, Cindy, Lindy (Mike Snelling) and Jay (Mary Katherine); five grandchildren, Keith (Amanda) Lawhon, David Westmark, Katy (R.C.) Westmark Parrott, Emily and Jason Westmark, and one great grandson, Carter Lawhon.

A visitation was held at Emmanuel Baptist Church on Saturday, Oct. 19, 2013, from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., followed by a celebration of her life at 11 a.m. Burial was held at Roselawn Cemetery.