Call now for immediate attention: 772-999-5547

Call now for immediate attention: 772-999-5547

Josette Leslie Rice

March 27, 1953 ~ October 15, 2020

Josette Leslie Rice joined the angels early morning on October 15, 2020. Born in Sacramento, CA on March 27, 1953 to the late Marcy (Hintz) and Lawrence Rice, Josette was a gentle soul who left much too soon.

Josette earned Masters degrees in Materials Science and Engineering (UC Davis) and Electrical Engineering (George Washington Univ). During her 24-year Naval career as an Engineering Duty Officer, she was an instructor at West Point and the U.S. Naval Academy, built satellites out of new and used parts, and retired with the rank of Commander.

Never one to slow down, she obtained her General Contractor’s license, Project Management credential, started her own engineering construction firm, and was awarded numerous Prime contracts with federal and state governments.

Affectionately known as Jojo, she earned her Master Gardener credentials from both California and Florida university horticultural programs with Wendy, her best friend and spouse. Jojo was an avid lecturer on gardening for birds and butterflies often found leading workshops on birdhouse building and miniature gardens. Many gardens today are populated with milkweed and other butterfly-loving flowers because of her generosity of time and spirit.

Josette was a martial arts 3rd degree black belt who once ran her own dojo, a wonderful guitarist, and an avid hiker of any place where she could put her boots on the ground. Her favorite hobby besides gardening was a quiet beach walk with her favorite people and dogs.

She is survived by her spouse, Wendy L Emerson of Vero Beach, FL; their four papillon (butterfly) dogs; her siblings, Dorian Rice (Diane) of Boise, ID; Kerry Rice of Murphy, CA; Kandi Fulmer (BJ) of Minden, NV; nephews Zack Rice, Kerry Rice Jr, Joshua Rice, Dakota Fulmer, Shayne Fulmer, and niece Meagan Rice.

Josette was predeceased by her parents and a brother.


Christopher Engel

March 24, 2021, 8:21 pm

May she rest in peace and soar with the angels, while looking down on her loved ones!!!
She will be Missed!!!

Janine DeTurris

March 24, 2021, 8:36 pm

JoJo was an amazing woman. I knew her best through Wendy’s stories as we would catch up on their travels and adventures over the past 13+ years, but I also was fortunate to know her personally also.
My heart aches for Wendy and all who loved her as her absence will certainly leave a void.

Liam O'Brien

March 24, 2021, 8:40 pm

Such a beautiful person inside and out, gone to early. I’m so lucky to have known her and may she protect her loved ones from above!

Bill Hoover

March 24, 2021, 9:51 pm

I still find it difficult to believe she is not with us. I think of Josette often and miss her. I cannot imagine how hard it must be for you Wendy. You and Jojo are two of the best people I ever met and San Diego is not the same without you.

Jan Davis

March 26, 2021, 9:50 pm

Josette was sunshine, grace, and kindness. Hers was a quiet strength.
Deepest condolences to all she loved and all who loved her so dearly.

laurie nordin

March 27, 2021, 8:00 pm

she had a heart for dogs, especially Papillons and one could always find her out walking them after a long day of work. she was a true friend who listened with her heart and gave her whole heart in return. you were taken so soon. i miss you. eternally in our hearts.

Michelle R.

March 28, 2021, 9:58 pm

I am so sorry and sad to hear of Jojo’s passing. Such a wonderful person, gone too soon. My heart hurts for Wendy. Time does not heal but with time we learn to go on.

Gaile Kraus

March 30, 2021, 3:35 pm

I knew Jojo n Wendy for a few years and I enjoyed their friendship. Jojo accomplished so much in life which I never knew until now,she never bragged about it but her intelligence showed in her personality n every day life. Oh how I miss the fact that she’s not here on earth with us. God had other plans n I know she’s watching n keeping tabs on Wendy n her pups.Rest in peace Jojo n the world is a better place because of you, at least I am . I love you

Brenda G. Bautista

February 10, 2022, 12:33 am

I am soo saddened to hear of Josette’s passing. I was a Tang Soo Do student of hers at her dojang, “United Women’s Fighting Arts,” in the mid 1990s, located in Chula Vista, California in San Diego County, California. At age 54, I have recently returned back to martial arts (Take Kwon Do, which came from Tang Soo Do) and was doing a search on her to let Josette know how much she contributed to me and made a difference in my life. Martial Arts is my passion, and I made it to red belt under Josette. I have become a better person and martial artist because of Josette. Rest In Peace, SaBumNim Josette Rice. – Brenda Bautista

Randy Harter

September 27, 2022, 11:42 am

I just found out that she passed. I met josette in 96. She was teaching tangsoodo at the time in Chula Vista CA. I Was going through a very hard time then, but her training lead me out of the problems I had. I’m now a Law Enforcement Officer, and Martial Arts Instructor myself. Not a day goes by that I don’t thank her for her guidance. She will always be in my heart and prayer even after all these year.

Carol Mandra

December 23, 2022, 7:33 pm

I only found out this year, 2022, that Josette Rice has left this life and gone on to Heaven. This is sad news, as she left us way too early and probably had more of herself to give. She was one of the best tactical karate instructors I ever had. She was also a wise advisor in regards to developing the mental strength that is an imporrtant component of the martial arts. Josette earned respet by giving it to others when it was due. She cared about the people in her life. Her United Women’s Fighting Arts taught me more in 2 years than what I learned with a previous instructor at another dojo. This is despite reaching black belt level at the other school. Josette, may God grant you new adventures, love, and learning in Heaven

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