Windsor woman even more active in retirement

Published 12:35 pm Saturday, January 18, 2014

Merle Monahan
Contributing Writer

Joyce Neighbours

WINDSOR—Joyce Neighbours said she retired a little over two years ago, but has been so busy since that she hardly realizes it.

“I’ve always liked to be involved in the things going on around me,” she said with a smile. “Actually, I thrive on it.”

Neighbours does indeed thrive on outside activities. A former president of the Auxiliary of the Virginia Rural Letter Carrier’s Association for 20 years, she serves as its secretary/treasurer (her husband, Marion, is a former rural letter carrier), and has been chosen the organization’s “Member of the Year” on four occasions.

Neighbours is treasurer of the Friends of the Library in Windsor, was a member of the Blackwater Regional Library Board for eight years and is serving her second term as president of the Windsor Woman’s Club.

She is especially proud of the woman’s club.

“We’ve received so many awards, some on the national level, for the work we’ve done. It’s quite humbling. We do so appreciate the recognition, though,” she said recently while a resolution from the Windsor Town Council commending the club on its work in the community.

A local resident, Neighbours, was born and raised on a farm near Zuni. She graduated from Windsor High School with honors and attended college for one year.

“I wanted to be at home, though, so I secured a job at Farmer’s Bank in Windsor, where I worked for another year before transferring over to an insurance company,” she said.

Neighbours worked in insurance for several years before eventually buying the business. She retired from the company in August of 2011.

“I thought I’d have a little more free time when I retired,” she said with a grin, “but there still is so much to do.”

She has been a member of the Windsor Woman’s Club since 1992, served as its president from 2004 to 2006 and was reelected in 2012 for another two years.

Organized in 1930, the Windsor Club has always been active, Neighbours said, “and our current membership of 49 is no exception.

“We keep abreast of the things around town that we may be able to help with. We also join with the Windsor Ruritans to help on some occasions, like the Fourth of July celebration and the Pig Pickin’.

“We also help with Heifer International, where we send live animals to third-world countries to help feed the people.

“We also have fundraisers to help us help others. Then we sponsor events like the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus for the children.

“In other words, if there is a good cause in our area and we can help, we do.”

Neighbours is happy to be involved, she said.

“I’ve always been civic minded, I think. It’s like I’m giving back to those who’ve helped me.”

She said she often works with her husband, who has the same attitude about getting involved as she does.

“For instance, he is president of the Friends of the Library, while I am treasurer.”

At 76, the active grandmother has been involved in civic and church organizations for years, but few people know exactly when she started.

A lifelong member of Tucker Swamp Baptist Church, she is president of her Sunday school class and the Woman’s Missionary Union.

But more importantly, she is an accomplished musician and has been the organist there since she was 13.

NAME: Joyce U. Neighbours
OCCUPATION: Retired owner of an insurance company.
MARITAL STATUS: Married to Marion C. Neighbours for almost 55 years.
CHILDREN, AGES AND SCHOOLS: A son, Sidney “Sid” Neighbours, works for the Suffolk City School System; and a daughter, Dr. Joleen Neighbours, also works for the Suffolk City School System; one granddaughter, Savannah Sydney Miller, 14.
FAVORITE NIGHT OUT ON THE TOWN: Dinner out with family and friends.
FAVORITE RESTAURANT: Marion and I like all of the local restaurants.
FAVORITE FOOD AND BEVERAGE: Fried chicken and iced tea.
WHAT DO MOST PEOPLE NOT KNOW ABOUT YOU: I don’t think there’s anything people don’t know about me.
WHAT IS THE BEST THING ABOUT YOU: I like to help others.
PETS: None.
FAVORITE HOBBIES: Doing things with my family, especially attending sports events with my granddaughter, reading and watching game shows on TV.
PET PEEVE: Telemarketers.
FIRST JOB: As a teller at Farmer’s Bank in Windsor.
HOW WOULD YOU LIKE TO BE REMEMBERED: As a Christian wife, mother and grandmother, who was strongly involved in her church.
IF YOU HAD 10 MINUTES ON NATIONAL TELEVISION, WHAT WOULD YOUR TOPIC BE AND WHAT WOULD YOU SAY: I would urge people to attend their church and to live a Christian life.