Joyce Beal, known as Pauletta Joyce (Beal) Richard, the daughter of Pauline Pittman Beal and the late Kenneth Claiborne Beal, Sr., Itta Bena, MS, unexpectedly passed away on Wednesday, October 21, 2020, in Indianapolis, IN, after living with multiple sclerosis for many years.
Joyce was born to Pauline and Kenneth in Ruleville, MS, on June 27, 1951.
Beyond attending SSSP summer enrichment programs made possible by the Presbyterian Church of the United States, she enjoyed being a flag bearer in marching band and was privileged to graduate valedictorian of Amanda Elzy High School in Greenwood, MS, in the year 1969.
Joyce attended Purdue University in Lafayette, IN, on a full-scholarship paid for by the Presbyterian Church of the United States. She studied mathematics at Purdue and proudly played the clarinet in the "boilermaker" marching band.
In 1973 she met her future husband, Herbert Richard, Jr., at Purdue. The late Reverend Fred Matthews of Itta Bena, MS. married them on March 8, 1974. After completing her Bachelor of Science in Mathematics degree, Joyce was a graduate student at Purdue studying business industrial administration, until her first daughter was born.
Joyce worked for the Purdue University costume shop, campaigned for elected candidates, taught applied mathematics at Indiana Vocational Technical College in Lafayette, IN, and had her second daughter. She continued to work as a substitute teacher in the Lafayette School Corporation, and designed and made window dressings that hanged in the Tippecanoe County Courthouse until 1992.
For many years, Joyce taught Sunday school at Schuyler Avenue Wesleyan Church in Lafayette, IN. Although her marriage did not withstand the test of time, her love of logic, mathematics, music, reading, and tending the earth did. For a time, she attended the First Reformed Church in Lafayette, IN, before embarking on a privileged journey of teaching mathematics full-time to junior high and high school students in multiple school systems in Gary, IN, Marion IN, New Orleans, LA, Davenport, IA, and Greenville, MS, for over 15 years.
Joyce was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2002 and retired from teaching. Confined to her wheelchair Joyce enjoyed container gardening and frequenting the local farmer's markets amidst undergoing unorthodox treatments for her condition that helped her to live.
To mourn her death and to lovingly cherish her life always, Joyce leaves two daughters: Joyce Doris Richard of Indianapolis, IN, and Annette Pauline Richard of Indianapolis, IN; a brother: Kenneth Claiborne Beal, Jr., Itta Bena, MS; a mother: Pauline Pittman Beal of Itta Bena, MS; three aunts: Easter Flora Lee Hill of Memphis, TN; Yvonne Smith of Roxbury, MA; and Wilma Sanders of Roxbury, MA; three uncles: Xavier Louis Pittman of Kilmichael, MS; Walter Pittman of Freemont, CA; and William Pittman of Salsbury, NC; two nieces: Jasmine Estelle Beal of Chicago, IL and Monica Patrice Beal of Chicago, IL; some thirty-nine (39) first cousins across these United States that are namely Kimberly and Kelvin Pittman, Lewis and Linda and Neda Pittman, Sheila and Sonya and Sylvia Pittman, Sean Pittman, Rogena Barnes and Marietta Peoples, Gail Campbell, Jacquelyn Thomas, Annie Jewel Cooper, JoEllen Partee and Ollie Ann Wright and Emma Jean Thomas and John Wesley and Charlie Frank Pinkston, Latoya Beal, D.W. and Rufus Beal, Carol Ellen Sumpter and James, Jr., Shedrick and Monica and Vernon Beal, George and Sarita and Alfred Brown, Jeanette Johnson, Henry Allen Cox and Annie Mae Williams and Dorothy Harris and Ella Mae Harven and Johnny Joe Cox and James Quillen Cox and Octavia Marshall and Rosezetta Cox and host of even more cousins, relatives, and friends that simply will not fit in this limited program, and are every bit as beloved.
Joyce is preceded in death by her father, Kenneth Beal, Sr., of Itta Bena, MS, her late grandparents Mary Ellen Elizabeth Jones and David Duncan Beal of Lake, MS, and their 10 children that are all of her aunts and uncles on the Beal side, namely Octavia, Nancy, David, Jackson, James, Sara, Joe, Annie "Doll," Baby Mary, and Baby Blanche; her maternal grandparents Hallie Belle Hunt and the late T. B. Pittman of Kilmichael, MS, and their son and daughter, her uncle Henry Wallace "Teddy" Pittman of Memphis, TN, and her aunt Verlie Mae "Vert" Pittman Wilbourn of Columbus, MS, respectively; her cousins Geoffrey Sanders, Edna Johnson, Arnita "Beanie" Harrington, and Jean Cox.
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