LaRue Mecham Lewis
-- 1932 ~ 2011 --
FORK, Utah – Joyce LaRue (Mecham) Lewis of American
Fork, Utah, passed away at home Wednesday, September 21,
2011 surrounded by her family and loving husband.
On November 21, 1932, in Burley Idaho, the first daughter
of Parley and Louie Mae (Wardle) Mecham, Joyce arrived in
this world prematurely. Luckily, her grandmother was a midwife
and saved Joyce’s life using a homemade incubator
made up of a shoebox stuffed with cotton, placed on the
door of the stove. That was the first of many struggles
Joyce would overcome.
Joyce was a tender loving child, possessing a natural desire
to help and serve others selflessly and she learned the
meaning of hard work at a young age. Joyce worked the fields
on the family farm with her father and older brother. She
often tended her younger brother and cousins. Joy, as her
family liked to call her, served in Young Women’s
and many years in Primary in the Paul, Idaho, Emerson Ward
of the LDS Church.
A graduate of Heyburn High School, Joyce married Victor
Charles Engkraf of Rupert, Idaho in 1950. The couple had
seven children, five daughters and two sons and endured
the loss of one infant girl. Joyce and Victor lived in both
Idaho and Washington before building a home and settling
in Paul, Idaho in 1962. Joyce worked at Kraft Foods in Rupert
for a time. After their divorce in 1971, Joyce and the younger
children stayed in the Paul home and Joyce began working
at the Burley Inn Café.
In 1972, Joyce married Roy Lewis, a single father from
Twin Falls with three boys. Shortly thereafter, she began
working at Ore Ida Foods. Their marriage was full of joy
and challenges as Roy and Joyce endeavored to bring the
two families together. They had one son together in 1974
making Joyce a member of the "his, mine and ours"
club and they solemnized their marriage in the Salt Lake
City Temple on August 7, 1976.
Joyce’s family was her true happiness. She cherished
holidays and family reunions and worked tirelessly to create
opportunities for her siblings, parents, children, grandchildren
and great-grandchildren to spend time together. She provided
her family with countless memories and showered everyone
with love and food, just like her mother. Anyone that came
to her house got a meal whether they were hungry or not.
True to her nature, Joyce cared for her ailing mother and
mother-in-law. She and Roy took them both into their home
when they could no longer live alone. During this time she
worked a full time job and had a teenage son at home.
Joyce retired in 1998 from Ore Ida Foods after 25 years.
After retiring, Joyce struggled with heart disease and in
2002 had bypass surgery. She suffered a debilitating stroke
in 2005 which forced her and Roy to leave their home in
Idaho. They moved closer to family and advanced medical
care in Utah County where they have lived for the past six
Joyce had incredible faith in people and everyone she loved.
She had a contagious laugh. She was always spotted smiling
and was happiest with a baby on her lap. She served her
family and loved ones unconditionally. Joyce was a loving
and giving soul who made all of us who knew her better people.
Joyce is survived by her husband, Roy; brothers, Verl Mecham
and Bruce Mecham; sisters, Jane (Mecham) Adamson and Connie
(Mecham) Campbell; daughters, Vicki (Engkraf) Goodwin, Joanna
(Engkraf) Carter, Cindy (Engkraf) Bird, Jeanne (Engkraf)
McEwan; sons, Larry Engkraf, Michael Engkraf and James Lewis;
stepsons, LeRoy Lewis, Gary Lewis and Clark Lewis; 30 grandchildren;
30great-grandchildren. Joyce was preceded in death by her
infant daughter Raelene, and her parents Parley and Louie
Mae (Wardle) Mecham.
A viewing will be held in American Fork from 5:00 p.m.
– 7:00 p.m. Sunday, September 25, 2011 at Warenski
Funeral Home, 1776 North 900 East, American Fork, Utah 84003
A viewing and service will be held on Tuesday, September
27, 2011 at 1:00 pm in the Emerson LDS Church, 127 South
950 West, Paul, Idaho 83347. Viewing will be held from 11:00
a.m. – 12:45 p.m. and service at 1:00 p.m.
Interment will be in the Paul Cemetery under the direction
of Warenski Funeral Home.