Cover photo for Joy Gonzales's Obituary
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1964 Joy 2020

Joy Gonzales

December 15, 1964 — December 20, 2020

Denver, CO

Joy Gonzales, 56 of Denver, CO, formerly of Gothenburg, NE  died December 20, 2020 in Gothenburg Health, Gothenburg, NE.

Joy Lynnann, daughter of John "Jim" and Janice Kuhlman Gonzales was born December 15, 1964 at Hastings, NE.  She attended kindergarten and 1st grade in Ogallala, NE.  The family moved to Gothenburg, NE where she attended 2nd through 12th grade, graduating with the class of 1983.

She attended Dana College at Blair, NE and graduated from UNO (University of Nebraska Omaha).

Following her education at Dana College she worked for the American Cancer Society and the Omaha Housing Authority.

She moved to Los Angeles in 1995 and worked several years for American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA),  Joy enjoyed her work as a liaison between actors and producers.

Joy moved briefly to Santa Fe, NM and worked for the Lt. Governor of New Mexico.

Moving to Denver was a dream Joy had since high school.  She loved the mountains to hike, bike or camp.  The museums, art galleries and good food were close at hand too.  She worked for the National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL) in Golden, CO.  Joy was proud of the work NREL did in research and working relationships with other countries in creating renewable energy and climate change.

Traveling with friends to France, Italy, New Zealand, Peru and Hawaii were highlights of her life.

Cooking and creating wonderful meals was her way of showing love for family and friends.

During her life she developed life long friendships with many people.  Her nephews and nieces were always her pride and joy their interests and activities were very important to her.

Joy fought her first cancer at age 12.  Her message to cancer patients and survivors was to "KEEP FIGHTING", never give up hope and reach out to each other in support.

Those preceding her in death are grandfather, Capt. John C. Gonzales, grandparents Sam & Lois Atkinson, Ed & Mabel Kuhlman, aunt Patricia Kuhlman Aden, uncle Gene Aden, uncle Paul Gonzales, and cousin Matt Kuhlman.

Left to cherish her memory are her parents, brother John (Anastasia) Gonzales of  Cape Girardeau, MO;  two sisters, Judy (Darrin) Nichols of McCook, NE;  Jill (Bob) Jorgenson of Gothenburg, NE;   nieces and nephew; Augustus Gonzales, Emilyne Nichols (fiancée Austen Sis), Hannah, Matthew and Bethany Nichols; Alexander (Kimberly) Jorgenson, Helena (fiancee Spencer Dorn) Jorgenson, Olivia Jorgenson, Christopher (Carmen) Nelson and Kersten (Kyle) Shefcyk.  Also left to morn her loss are aunts, uncles, cousins and many dear friends.

Visitation will be Friday, April 23, 2021, 3:00 pm - 6:00 pm, Blase-Strauser Memorial Chapel, Gothenburg, with family present from 4:00 - 6;00pm.

Celebration of Life services will be held Saturday, April 24, 2021, 10:30 AM at the American Lutheran Church,  Gothenburg, NE with Pastor Jon Mapa officiating.

Interment will follow in the Gothenburg Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers memorials are suggested to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital,501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105; Jack's Place, Shaw Cancer Center P. O. Box 2559, Edwards Co, 81632.

To sign the online guest book, go to

Celebration of Life Services will be held Saturday, April 24, 2021 at 10:30 AM at the American Lutheran Church.

Memorials may be given to the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN  38105 or Jack's Place A Cancer Caring House, 332 Beard Creek Rd, Edwards, CO 81632.

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

Service Schedule

Past Services


Friday, April 23, 2021

3:00 - 6:00 pm (Central time)

Blase - Strauser Memorial Chapel


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Celebration of Life

Saturday, April 24, 2021

Starts at 10:30 am (Central time)

American Lutheran Church

1512 Avenue G, Gothenburg, NE 69138

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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