Biography: Joyce Charlie Brown was born on October 23rd, 1946 in Harlem Hospital to the late Hubert F. Charley and Agnes E. Blocker. Joyce was educated in the New York City school system. She was a good student and enjoyed learning.
Joyce married the late Thomas Brown and from this union they were blessed with two loving children, Tara and Thomas Wesley. Joyce showed her love to her children by faithfully attending every open school night, school and church performance, filling the stove with traditional Sunday dinners weekly, ensuring participation in extracurricular activities, nurturing their talents and establishing family traditions during Easter and Christmas.
Joyce was a member of St. John’s Baptist Church in Harlem, NY in her early years and then the Family Baptist Church for over four (4) decades. It was there that she used her gifts, education and administrative skills like shorthand to add to the life of the church. With dedication, She served as the matron of the Sunshine Choir, sang in the Gospel Chorus, and followed in her mom’s footsteps by serving in the missionary board as part of it’s leadership. Joyce’s service to God and gifts were further displayed in her sewing ability. She made the baptismal robes for new believers, choir robes, and even the items that adorn the church during the serving of the Lord’s Supper.
Joyce flourished in her career with the Health and Hospitals Corp of New York City at Bellevue and Metropolitan Hospitals where she worked until retirement, due to illness. Eventually, her dedication and ambition took her from administrative work to the office of payroll, and eventually Supervisor of the Psychiatry Information Center. Joyce used her people skills to train staff and assist overwhelmed patients. Employment with Metropolitan Hospital was more than work, staff became her family often times caring for her when she was ill. Joyce was fortunate work near her sisters Marion and Evelyn, along with her bonus dad, Eddie Alston whom her mom Agnes married.
It was common for Joyce to open her door and give some love on a plate, maybe filled with ribs, cole slaw, and possibly her famous bread pudding. Just the same, she could open the door and find someone carrying material and a sewing pattern to get an outfit made. She made countless items for her family and others. Joyce didn’t fail to step out in her own fabulous original clothing from suits, to church outfits to African garb.
Joyce loved children. This was possibly shaped by her responsibility to look after her nieces and nephews as a young person herself. Joyce took this responsibility to heart: She brought many young people to church, and was the loving aunty, good neighbor, and godmother to many young children in the family and community. Joyce loved swimming, cooking, welcoming and loving others. She was the matriarch of her family in her later years. Joyce was affectionately known as “The Sarg”, Ms. Joyce, Auntie, Aunt Joyce, Godmother, Sis and Sister Brown, but the name that she adored and we will miss calling the most is Mom.
Joyce was preceded in death by Kenneth Vasconez, a loved companion for many years.
Joyce leaves to cherish her memories her children, daughter Tara C. Brown-Arnell (Nicholas), son Thomas W. Brown (Scott); grandchildren Joi-Elle Arnell and JonAaron Arnnell; siblings Lorraine Townsend, David Leon Charley (Annie), Kim N. Blocker and Denise Johnson; Sister-in-Law Agnes Charley, late siblings, Thomas Blocker, Marion Jenkins, Evelyn Lee, Melvin Charley, Verdell Peterson, Florence Washington and Raymond; Godchildren Darlene Brewington, Thomas Blocker, Jr., Keisha Watson-Anderson, Julius Dyson, Jackie Blocker-Marshall, Cleveland (Chucky) Jenkins, Jr. , and TuShawn Dyson(late) and many more that she adopted in love; many nieces, nephews, cousins, other relatives and many beloved friends.