Joyce Billiot Romero, a longtime resident of Bayou Vista, entered into eternal rest on Wednesday, July 14, 2021.
Joyce was born in Franklin, Louisiana on May 18, 1942. She spent the first part of her childhood in Creole Pass before her family moved to Morgan City where she attended Morgan City High School. She met and married her husband Ceasar Romero at the age of 18, and together they had 3 children, Donna, Tammy, and Caesar Jr. that they raised from their home in Berwick. Joyce worked for over 20 years at K&B until she retired. Since then, she has been a full-time mom, grandma, sister, friend, and attendee to countless graduations, weddings, birthday parties, tee ball, softball, and soccer games. She is preceded in death by her husband Ceasar Romero, her daughter Tammy Romero, her son-in-law Wade LeBlanc, her parents Whitney and Nola Billiot, stepfather Lynn Wilson, her brother Whitney “Sonny” Billiot Jr, her sister Jeanette Billiot Crochet, her brother-in-law Robert Landry, and her godchild Whitney Billiot III.
Joyce is survived by her daughter Donna LeBlanc, her son Caesar Romero Jr. and his wife Chasity; sisters Doris Landy, Brenda Alleman and husband LJ, her brother Clayton Billiot and wife Susie, her sister-in-law Jeanette Billiot; her grandchildren Danielle Tatum Bales and husband Ben, Elmer “Bubba” Tatum III, Erin Tatum Atkins and husband Jimmy, Amber Romero, Lauryn Romero, and Joey Perry; and her great-grandchildren Maggie Atkins, TJ Atkins, Darlene Tatum, Jorion Romero, Leilah Baker, Ayden Romero, Alyssa Perry, and Reagan Perry.
Joyce answered to many other names…Mama, Grandma, Mama Joyce, and Maw Maw. Sometimes these names were used by people who were not her biological family, a telling sign of someone who took care of everyone around her. She was fiercely determined, strong willed (stubborn really), and rarely minced words. (If she were here to see us sad, she would probably say “Suck it up, Jack” and punctuate it with a strong head nod for emphasis to tell us to keep marching forward.) That tough love side was balanced by a soft side that was giving, caring, and always wore a smile, even in the face of hardship, and she knew when to use which one. Joyce never met a stranger. She could and would talk to anybody who crossed her path, usually leaving them with a joke and a laugh, which earned her the nickname of Smiley. Some of her greatest joys came from family gatherings around a table piled high with boiled crabs or crawfish, playing with her great-grandchildren, and a little bit from hitting a jackpot. She really loved slot machines and trips to the casino. She also loved LSU and Saints football, John Besh, Jeopardy, ice cream (despite her unwavering insistence that she did not eat sweets), and dancing. She was last seen cutting a rug 2 years ago at her granddaughter’s wedding in New Orleans where she was spun around the dance floor, smiling ear to ear. One of her greatest talents was gardening. It was often said that she could grow a stick. If she stuck it into the ground, it would grow into something beautiful. She took great pride in her meticulously kept front yard, which was full of stunning red amaryllis and won Yard of the Month several times. Joyce was also a great cook, and, like any good Cajun, she used her food to show love. If she made biscuits from scratch, a shrimp okra gumbo, strawberry shortcake, or her famous smothered pork roast just for you, you knew you were getting a gift of love and you probably called people to brag about it but wouldn’t offer to share.
She was deeply loved and will be missed dearly. So will her pork roast, since she never told anyone the full recipe. We still love her all the same.
Visitation will be held at Twin City Funeral Home on Friday, July 16, 2021 from 4:00 pm to 9:00 pm with a rosary being prayed at 7:00 pm with the visitation resuming on Saturday, July 17, 2021 from 9:00 am to 12:30 pm. A funeral mass will be celebrated at 1:00 pm on Saturday, July 17, 2021 at St. Stephen Catholic Church in Berwick with Monsignor Courville officiating. Burial will follow in the Berwick Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in Joyce’s name to the Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center.