Linda died on May 22, 2011, after three years of struggle with ovarian cancer. She was 65.
Linda was the light of my life and the joy of my existence for over thirty years. She was an unfailing source of support, love and good humor to her enormous circle of friends. She was a skilled and compassionate physical therapist, who genuinely loved her patients. Her reservoir of love was always overflowing; she loved more people in this world than most of us will ever even know.
A soft and gentle light has gone out. The world will be a darker place.
Linda was born in Kalamazoo, Michigan and lived there and in Middletown, Connecticut during her childhood years. Her father, Roy Joyce, died of brain cancer when Linda was ten years old. She obtained a B.A. degree from Western Michigan University in 1967 and taught elementary school in Kalamazoo for several years, before moving to San Francisco to observe the developing scene. A few years later she transferred herself to Bellingham, Washington, where she met and, in 1982, married Myrl Beck. She later attended Western Washington University and the University of Washington, earning a B.S. degree in physical therapy. She worked for St. Joseph's Hospital in Bellingham for twenty years, until her medical problems intervened. All of St. Joe's physical therapists are excellent, but Linda was especially so, largely because of her immense store of compassion, patience, and good humor. As one of her colleagues said recently, "When I am faced with a particularly uncooperative or ill-tempered patient I often ask myself: What would Linda do?"
Linda also was a master quilter. She is said to have had a particularly good eye for selecting and assembling fabric. This required visits to many, many fabric stores. Linda had a book that told her where they all were located. Cross country trips with Linda could turn into very lengthy affairs! And in addition, she was a walking encyclopedia of movie knowledge: ask her "Hey, Linda, who was that guy in the red shirt in that boxing movie" and she would name the movie, name the actor, and even provide juicy details about his latest divorce!
Linda was taken from us by one of the cruelest and most implacable diseases a woman can face, a disease that is fairly crying out to be wiped from the face of the earth! I hope that all of you who read this web tribute will "sign the guest book" (post something about your feelings for Linda or your experiences with her), and consider making a contribution in aid of cancer research.