Cover photo for Joyce Ann Riffe's Obituary
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1949 Joyce Ann 2022

Joyce Ann Riffe

February 17, 1949 — October 28, 2022

Gainesville

Joyce Ann (Milton) Riffe of Gainesville, Florida, passed away Friday, October 28, 2022, at Shands Hospital following an extended illness. Joyce was love and light to those she encountered, known for her infectious laugh and gracious manner.

Born in Jacksonville, Florida on February 17, 1949, to John E. Milton, Sr. and Lois Lee (Barnes) Milton, Joyce grew up in Macclenny, where she spent much time and made many happy memories with her cousins and extended family at “Grandmother Milton’s House” located on the former Milton farm at the eastern edge of town. She graduated with honors from Baker County High School in 1967 and would eventually earn an Associate’s degree from Florida Community College (now Florida State College) at Jacksonville. Joyce worked in the railroad and mortgage banking industry before retiring in the early 2000s as a data recovery specialist.

Joyce was married to the love of her life, Clark Riffe, Jr. for over 20 years, and they moved together to Oak Hammock in Gainesville in 2014, after living in Atlantic Beach and Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida for many years. Joyce thoroughly relished her time at Oak Hammock, pursuing her hobbies in the arts, including painting, stained glass, and dancing with the “Golden Gators,” where she performed during halftime at a University of Florida men’s basketball game in 2019. Joyce was also elected to the Oak Hammock Resident’s Council and especially enjoyed attending costume and theme parties and participating in fundraising events and service projects with her Oak Hammock friends, including the Take Stock in Children scholarship and mentoring program in Gainesville. 

Joyce and Clark traveled extensively, taking many trips stateside and to Europe with Clark’s sister and brother-in-law, Susan and Ed O’Neal of Virginia Beach, Virginia. Joyce also enjoyed travels with her daughter LeAnn, including several visits to Cleveland and New York City and a memorable mother-daughter adventure in Prague and Vienna in 2010. Joyce had a keen eye and talent for travel photography and often framed prints as gifts to family and friends as well as for display in her home. Joyce was a gifted hostess and cook, particularly known for her coconut pies, and a lifelong animal lover as well, with many cats, dogs and horses holding a special place in her heart. Joyce also worked throughout her life to build connection and community within her family, devoting much time to researching and sharing genealogical records and making connections with extended family members online and in person at the Milton reunion held annually at Miltondale in Macclenny. 

Joyce is survived by her husband Clark; daughter LeAnn Davis of Richfield, Ohio; children by marriage Martin (Elisabeth) Riffe of Ponte Vedra, Leigh Flemister of Silver Springs Shores, Florida, and Michael Riffe of Chandler, Arizona; grandchildren Monica Ann Riegel, Thomas Riffe, and Molly Riffe; sisters Theresa (Richard J.) Ferry of Macclenny, and Paula (Jerry) Nettles of Lake City, Florida; brother John E. (Dayle) Milton, Jr. of Glen St. Mary, Florida; nieces and nephews Karen (Michael) McCollum, Richard Ferry, Anna Dayle Milton-Fuss, Garrett Milton, J.D. (Katie) Milton, and Wyatt Milton; and beloved cousins and friends throughout the country, including many Milton, Barnes and Davis extended family members with whom she remained close. Joyce was predeceased by her parents, John and Lois Milton.

A celebration of Joyce’s life will be held at 3:00pm on Sunday December 4, 2022, at the Oak Room at Oak Hammock, located at 4620 SW 25th Terrace, Gainesville, Florida, with Archer-Milton Funeral Home of Lake Butler, Florida providing services and support to the family. In addition to The Education Foundation of Alachua County (the Take Stock in Children administrator for the Gainesville area) and the Oak Hammock Benevolent Fund, Joyce designated the American Cancer Society, the Jacksonville Humane Society, and the Alachua County Humane Society as charitable organizations aligned with her interests and values. In lieu of flowers, family and friends are encouraged to honor Joyce’s memory by donating to one of these organizations in Joyce’s name.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Joyce Ann Riffe, please visit our flower store.

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Celebration of Life

Sunday, December 4, 2022

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