Joey was born on April 14, 1937 to Robert and Irene Campbell and raised in Frederick, South Dakota.
She was the middle child and grew up in a town of no more than 200 people, where she graduated from a high school class of eight. She had big dreams however, and after college interviewed for an opportunity to train to become a stewardess with United Airlines. This was fairly competitive in the 1950’s and she said she cinched the position when asked why she wanted to be a stewardess, by fervently stating, “I just HAVE to get out of South Dakota”. She earned her wings and flew one of the first DC-10 wide bodies out of Chicago. While in Chicago she met Steven Roberts who was a medical student. Despite the fact that he was dating her roommate, he would indeed become her future husband. Mom liked to say he decided she was the one when she threw a board game at him. They were married in 1961 and began life in New York City, where she continued to work the United ticket counter while Steve completed his residency training. Following training, Steve’s Naval commitment placed them in Corpus Christi, TX and eventually landed them in Tyler, TX where Steve hung his shingle to practice urology and Joey created a beautiful home. She quickly became involved in her children’s activities and her community and made lifelong friends in the famous “Birthday Club”.
Joey, or “Jojo” as her later grandchildren would call her, was a wonderful cook (frequent winner of the annual stuffed cabbage cook off and protector of family secret recipes), decorator, avid reader and needlepoint expert. She always had a stack of books by her bed and truly, her needle work was a labor of love and a work of art. If you received one of these delightful productions, you know! She was fiercely protective of her husband, children and her privacy. Her favorite things included assisting her children decorate their own homes and her grandchildren whom she loved and on whom she spoiled with her time and creativity. She knew everyone all over town and could frequently be found at two of her favorites: Barnes and Noble, and Starbucks where, even there, she was known as Jojo. She had impeccable style and class and was happy to remind us, and everyone, when it was absent. She was wickedly funny and loved being mom to anyone who needed one.
Later in her life, she and Steve enjoyed traveling the world together and making new friends on cruises that ported in nearly every continent. Her bag was always packed and ready for the next adventure.
When she couldn’t travel any longer and her world became smaller, she still enjoyed her home and visits from her grandchildren and an occasional trip for a latte.
Joey is survived by her husband of 59 years, Steven Roberts and their three children, Andrew and Marianne Roberts of Tyler, Sara and John Metersky of San Antonio, and Heidi and Richard McKellar of Dallas as well as her grandchildren: Kate and Jack Roberts, Sam and Ben Metersky and Graem McKellar, Olivia and Joshua Dugan and Mary and Dickson McKellar. She is also survived by her brother, Bob Campbell, his wife Becky, of Frederick, South Dakota and their adult children and families. She is predeceased by her parents and her sister and brother-in-law, Judy and Keith Isaacson of Tyler.
In lieu of flowers please make memorial gifts to Hospice of East Texas, 4111 University Blvd Tyler, TX 75701. We are grateful for their beautiful care of our “Jojo”.