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Mary Joyce "Sandy" Heathcote

Mary Joyce “Sandy” Heathcote of Kalamazoo, MI passed away on January 31, 2021 at the age of 96. Mary Joyce was born on September 15, 1924 in Kalamazoo the daughter of James C. and Marjorie E. (Elsey) Van Woert. Mary Joyce graduated from Kalamazoo Central High School and went on to her registered nurse certificate at St. Camilus School of Nursing at Borgess Hospital. Upon completion of her nursing degree, Sandy was employed at the Kalamazoo Psychiatric Hospital until she was old enough to take her State Boards. She eventually served as Director of the Nursery at Borgess Hospital. As she and Buck raised four children, she was employed in the medical office of Dr. Doris Dahlstrom and Dr. Roger Smith. Having taken time away from the Medical field, Sandy worked for a few years at the D & C Store at Eastwood Plaza before finishing 18 years as chair side assistant for Dr. Dean Richardson, DDS. On April 10, 1946 she married the love of her life Francis B. “Buck” Heathcote from their love four children were brought into this world. Sandy and Buck shared a passion for bowling, and they bowled in several state and local tournaments. One of their favorite things to do was to spend summers at their fifth wheel in Marcellus at Beach Grove with their closest friends. She was a lifelong member of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church. Mary Joyce is preceded in her passing by her parents, husband and children: Dane C. Heathcote and Danelle C. Heathcote. Left to cherish her loving memory are her children: David C. (Ruthie) Heathcote and Debbie C. (Doug) Dykehouse, twelve grandchildren and fourteen great grandchildren. In accordance with Mary Joyce’s wishes cremation has taken place and she will be laid to rest with the rest of her family on a date to be determined in the spring of 2021. In lieu of flowers the family asks that all memorial donations be directed to the Hospice Care of South West Michigan. While visiting Mary Joyce’s tribute page please take a moment to light a candle or share a memory. The Heathcote family is being assisted by Avink Funeral Home & Cremation Society, 5975 Lovers Lane, Portage, MI 49002. 269-344-5600.

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She always called me " son". She always told me she loved me when ever I saw her. It is August and I just learned of her passing. I am so sorry for your loss David and Debbie. She will always be mom to me. Dan Danoski

Dan Ranoski Aug 5 2021 5:42 PM

Mrs. Heathcote (I don't think I ever knew her first name:blush:) was like a second mom to me. Danelle was one of my very best friends and I spent a lot of time at their home while growing up. She taught me many life lessons, mostly by her actions. The most memorable are how to balance home and work life and how to grieve. RIP :pray:

Julie (Stearns) VanderNoot Apr 6 2021 9:50 AM

David and Debbie, I'm so sorry to hear about your moms passing. I hope you were able to be with her. There are so many memories of your mom and dad I wouldnt know where to begin. Please know I am thinking of you both. Love, Emily

Emily La Li erte Feb 16 2021 7:45 PM

All my family were patients of Dr. Richardson, and I just remember how kind and cheerful your mom always was...probably knowing how much I didnt want to be there. Big hugs to you and your family Debbie:heart::heart:. Dayle

Dayle Whittington Feb 8 2021 4:11 PM

I have so many wonderful memories of Sandy while I was growing up. She was such a caring person and will be missed by many:cry:. Sending hugs to the family Muggs (Matyas) Turner

Muggs Turner Feb 8 2021 1:07 PM

Sandy's smile and always wanting to sit down and talk will be with me forever. She always called me "honey" RIP Sandy. Sympathies to the entire family. Karen Heasley

Karen Heasley Feb 8 2021 12:53 PM

I remember visiting her at memory care and she was talking about caring for an infant. I later found out about her involvement at Borgess nursery. After reading her obit I realized what an amazing life she had. I remember buck and sandy attending my wedding and I thought they seemed like the newlyweds. It was wonderful. Glad to have known them and the whole family. You are blessed and loved.

Christine Wagner Feb 8 2021 11:23 AM