Joyce Lee Harper’s Story

Joyce Lee Harper 1953-2004

In April 2000, Joyce Harper and her husband, David, hiked the trail from Yosemite Valley, California to Vernal Falls. Although Joyce was an avid hiker, this moderate trail seemed unusually difficult. Afterwards, she sought out medical help. By the end of the month Joyce had undergone life-saving surgery and was diagnosed with Stage IIIC ovarian cancer.

Over the next three years, Joyce courageously endured chemo regimens and two more major surgeries. In August 2003, Joyce underwent her third life-saving surgery, but her condition worsened within months. Throughout her lengthy fight, Joyce worked as much as possible, spent time with family and friends, and served the Lord. Joyce’s faith in Christ sustained her and gave her strength and courage to endure great hardships.
Joyce was a giver and always thought of others first. When family and friends visited, she made sure everyone had something to eat or drink even though Joyce herself was unable to eat or drink by mouth for the last five months of her life. With her husband, her children and stepchildren, Don Drorbaugh, Debi Drorbaugh and Ben Harper, her family and friends at her side, Joyce finally beat ovarian cancer by leaving it behind. She passed away on August 23, 2004. To learn more about Joyce’s courageous story, visit HYPERLINK “”

The Joyce Lee Harper Research Memorial Fund was established to carry out what was near and dear to Joyce’s heart—giving—by helping to fund early detection research for ovarian cancer so that others might not have to endure this horrible disease. Joyce’s fund supports trials of a proteomic pattern-based study for the early detection and diagnosis of ovarian cancer at The Lynne Cohen Preventive Care Clinic for Women’s Cancers at USC/Norris Cancer Center in Los Angeles.

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