Editor’s Note: The newest members of the Los Alamos Living Treasures are being highlighted Wednesday, Thursday and today in the Los Alamos Monitor.
Joyce Eyster is the “Cookie Lady,” the quintessential good neighbor.
“Cookies always open the doors.”
Caring, unassuming, good-natured, never overstaying her presence, her welcome to harried newcomers has been likened to “gentle rain on a parched leaf.” “I go say hello and introduce myself and tell where services are available that they might like. I take cookies, that always works.”
With lively eyes and curly hair, 94-year-old Joyce was born on March 13, 1921, into a Minnesota farming family. Her parents built up their farm from a single shed in a field.
“My father had two mules and a plow and seeds; he weeded sunflowers by hand. It was a real good childhood. I walked to school, about a mile and half away, It got 20-30 below in winter,” she said.
Joyce attended college in Michigan. Returning to Minnesota, she married Eugene Eyster in January 1942, just a month after Japan bombed Pearl Harbor — the two had met in their teens at a church picnic.
The wedding day temperature was 30 degrees below zero. Flowers froze on their way to the church.