Biography: Joyce Starks-Sullivan, age 74, passed away on June 9, 2019 at Mount Sinai St. Luke’s Hospital. Born March 30, 1945 in Troutman, North Carolina to the late Samuel and Marscelet Starks. She was a 1963 graduate of Unity High School in Statesville, North Carolina.
After graduation Joyce moved to New York City where she later met and married her husband John Wesley Sullivan, who she called the “Love of her Life”. In New York City Joyce worked as an Receptionist for Essence Magazine when it first began and the first issue of the magazine was published. She was then promoted to an Assistant Fashion Beauty Coordinator (This is where she enhanced her fashion sense.) and was given the opportunity to represent Essence on the Johnny Carson Show. Later Joyce worked at Alexis Kirk Jewelers, and for Off Broadway Boutique. After those positions with fashion, beauty and jewelry, Joyce was employed by American Express where she worked for many years. Then she later worked and retired from Health Insurance Plan (HIP) of New York.
Joyce was a faithful member of Canaan Baptist Church of Christ. At Canaan Joyce was a Trustee for six years. She was on the Scholarship Committee, and a member of the Women Day Choir. Joyce was a member of numerous organizations including President of AARP Manhattan Division. She was a member of the Women’s Auxiliary of the National Action Network New York City Chapter, a member of the Cathy Jordan Sharpton Scholarship Committee, a member of the Women of Excellence (Red Affair). Joyce enjoyed traveling and traveled the world with Retel Tours.
Mrs. Starks-Sullivan was preceded in death by her husband John Wesley Sullivan and a brother Conrad Starks.
She is survived by four brothers; Gene Starks of Troutman, North Carolina, Rayvone Starks (Michelle) of Atlantic City, New Jersey, Clinton Starks (Dr. Martha) of Salisbury, North Carolina, and Howard Starks (Rev. Vernadean) of Morganton, North Carolina. A special aunt, Ruth Starks of Baltimore, Maryland, special cousins Mary Starks and Clara Connor of Troutman, North Carolina. Brother in laws; Rhudolph Norris, Boker Norris, and sister in laws; Freddie Fleming and Virdie Hallums all from Greenville, North Carolina. Cousins, nieces and nephews.
Joyce was a wonderful woman that was greatly loved, she will always be missed and cherished. Her brothers said Joyce never failed to call them on their Birthday and Father’s Day.