Floral 15

Jyotika Grewal Mokha

1971 ~ 2023 (age 52) 52 Years Old

Jyotika Mokha Obituary

Jyotika Grewal Mokha was born August 14, 1971 in Chandigarh, India to Aparjit Singh Grewal and Sukhdev Kaur Grewal.

Her parents had two miscarriages prior to her birth and her mother was on full-time bedrest for Jyotika’s pregnancy, so she was a great blessing to her family when she arrived. She was adored by everyone and her Nanaji distributed burfi (Indian sweets) to everyone in his whole neighborhood the day after her birth.

Her first two months were spent in Chandigarh with her Nanaji and Naniji. Her father would visit every weekend from Patiala where he worked. During one visit when she was 23 days old, she started to turn blue while her Nani was giving her a bath. Her father had just watched a film teaching mouth to mouth and he performed this on her, clearing the mucus from her mouth that was blocking her breathing. He saved her life that day and it was a sign of the very special relationship they would share in their lives, as she adored her father.

After two months Jyotika and her mother joined her father in Patiala. Her father’s youngest sister, Jyotikia’s Sukhi Bhuji was living with them then. It was her Sukhi Bhuji who gave her the nickname Beetu or “little one”. A few months later she also gave her her formal name – Jyotika or “Light” which is taken to mean she brings light into the lives of all who associate with her. Her Sukhi Bhuji was her second mother in a very real sense.

The family moved to Bathinda in 1975 after her father was transferred there. Her father’s boss would send him on frequent business trips. One day the boss was taking a walk with his wife and passed the family’s house. Jyotika was sitting on the pillars of the gate and they stopped to check in. She said to him “Uncle, why do you send our dad on trips all the time. You don’t even have a little kid, why don’t you go?” – demonstrating her keen sense of justice and fairness from an early age.

She was an only child for several years and would always ask my parents for a brother. Her paternal grandmother, her Beji, told her to pray every day and ask for a brother. When her brother was born in 1977, she was terribly upset because she said she had prayed for a big brother. But she adored, spoiled, protected and supported her little brother, who adored her as well.

In 1979 her father moved to the United States. For 6 months she lived in Chandigarh with her mother, little brother, and grandparents, before they joined her father in the United States in July 1980, settling in Montgomery County Maryland. Like so many first-generation immigrant children, she faced challenges fitting in and balancing the two cultures of which she was now a part.

Two of her father’s sisters, her Bhujis, lived nearby in Maryland with their families, and everyone spent a lot of time together. She was close with her cousins who were really like brothers and sisters. They went to Sikh Youth Camp in Pittsburgh together, participated in Gurdwara cultural programs together where Jyotika participated in Giddha, did sunday school together, and often went on vacations together.

She excelled in school and was a straight-A student. She fell in love with language and writing and her stories and poems won prizes and she was published several times in county-wide student publications.

Upon graduation from high school she won a scholarship to James Madison University, initially studying pre-med, but her true interests lay elsewhere and she eventually completed her education at the University of Maryland, settling into a career in finance and accounting, eventually getting her CPA.

Jyotika started her career with FORVIS as an Office Manager in the Rockville Maryland office in 2001. Over her 22 years at the firm and through several mergers, she worked her way up to the highest levels of the firm, rising to Executive Vice President and becoming the go-to person for the C-suite for the development of new reporting for data and analytics. Not only did she contribute greatly with her intellectual knowledge and technology skills creating value that will continue to live on at the firm, she developed strong relationships as a colleague and mentor and was a cherished friend to many people at the firm.

She was married in 2000 and her first son Armaan, was born in 2002. She was so happy when Armaan was born and when she would come home from work she wouldn’t let anyone else hold him. She moved with her family to New Market, Maryland in 2004. In 2006 her second son, Rohan, was born. It was a more difficult pregnancy and she was so committed to her health and doing whatever was necessary to make sure her baby was as safe and healthy as possible.

She had a deep love of nature and the Chesapeake Foundation was an organization she was passionate about. She would spend a lot of time running and walking the trails near her home. Running was one of her loves and she was saddened when a physical limitation curtailed her running. She loved science fiction and fantasy TV and movies, which she would often watch with her sons. She was also very handy and crafty, and built several pieces of the furniture for her home, including a barn door. She was passionate about civil rights and justice and so many of her friends have recounted memories of her during the Women’s March, leading their little group, shouting at the top of her lungs, leading men and women for righteousness.

She will be remembered for her huge, indelible smile, her full-bodied laugh, how she stood up for those who could not stand up for themselves, her proud legacy at work, and her love of her family, especially her two wonderful boys, Armaan and Rohan. We will feel her absence so deeply but we will carry on her memory by carrying on her values and being a voice for those cannot speak for themselves. And most of all she will live on in the faces, hearts, and lives of her two sons in whom we see so much of her.

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Sikh Services
November 27, 2023

11:00 AM to 1:00 PM
Donaldson Funeral Home & Crematory, P.A.
1411 Annapolis Road
Odenton, MD 21113

Video is available for this event


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