Photography

Joyce H. (Hanawalt) Fuhrer

September 28, 1932 ~ February 4, 2024 (age 91) 91 Years Old

Joyce Fuhrer Obituary

Joyce Louise Hanawalt Fuhrer, age 91, formerly of McVeytown, PA, and Meyersdale, PA, died peacefully on February 4, 2024.  Joyce was born on September 28, 1932, at her parents’ home in McVeytown, the daughter of William Rupert Hanawalt and Sara Fry Hanawalt.  She was preceded in death by her parents, her brother, Jack Fry Hanawalt, and an infant daughter, Sara Marie Fuhrer.  She was survived by her husband of over 70 years, Donald Frederick Fuhrer, who died one day later on February 5, 2024.  She is also survived by her daughter, Susan Fuhrer Kardos and her husband, Jerry, two step granddaughters, seven step great grandchildren, two nieces, two nephews, and many beloved cousins.  Joyce was especially close to her cousin, Sue Ann Clark Grassmyer, whom she considered to be a sister.


Joyce graduated from Rothrock High School in 1950 and Lock Haven State Teachers’ College in 1954 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Health Education.  She began her teaching career at Captain Jack High School in Mount Union, Pennsylvania, where she taught physical education for three years. 

Joyce completed the remainder of her teaching career at Meyersdale Area High School in Meyersdale, Somerset County, Pennsylvania.  While at Meyersdale, she first taught physical education, and later, health and 7th grade English for 30 years.  She also coached the cheerleading team and assembled and coached Meyersdale’s first interscholastic girls’ basketball team.  Joyce loved teaching and was an excellent and well-liked teacher. 

She retired in 1992, when she and her husband moved back to McVeytown full time to spend their retirement years.  Joyce loved the outdoors, the ocean, and the sun, and she and her husband spent 15 warm and sunny winters in Cape Coral, Florida after they retired.  Joyce and her husband moved to Erie, PA in 2021 to be close to their daughter and her family.

Joyce and her husband developed and operated Idle Acres Camping Area in McVeytown for over 30 years.  Joyce loved to work and could always be found mowing grass, running the campground office, and talking with campers.  Joyce was physically active all of her life and was known to be a hard worker on both her father’s farm and the campground.  Joyce made many lifelong friends through Idle Acres. 

In her younger years, Joyce loved to sew, knit, and play the piano.  She was also an excellent baker and her home was always neat and spotless. She loved to read all of her life and maintained a long list of books she read in retirement.  Her reading was curtailed by macular degeneration in her last years.  Joyce was also an avid gardener and tended to many beautiful flowers at her home in McVeytown.  She said that gardening brought her peace. 

Joyce had a strong faith and was a lifelong member of McVeytown United Methodist Church.  Her church family was very important to her.

Joyce loved McVeytown and supported and participated in several community activities, from being the summer playground supervisor during her college years to organizing the quilt show at the annual Country Memories Day for many of her retirement years.  Joyce served as a volunteer librarian at the Rothrock Community Library during her 80s, where she was recognized for her dedication to the library and the town.   

Joyce loved animals and gave generously to animal rescue charities.  She was generous with all charities, especially those related to McVeytown.  Joyce’s quiet strength enabled her to overcome many obstacles in life; even when her health began to fail, she maintained a wonderful sense of humor and a pleasant demeanor, which made her popular with all of her family and friends.  Joyce was strong and steady, easy-going and unassuming.  Most of all, she was friendly and kind.  She leaves a large hole in the hearts of those who knew and loved her.

Interment will be private.  A memorial service will be planned at a later date.  Memorials may be sent to the McVeytown United Methodist Church, 3 South Queen Street, McVeytown, PA  17051, or the Rothrock Community Library, ℅ the Borough of McVeytown, P.O Box 321, McVeytown, PA 17051.   

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