Biography: Jannie Bell Canteen was born on January 18, 1944 to the late Abram Holmes and the late Maybell Canteen. She departed this life on Thursday March 26, 2020 at 10:51pm in Montefiore Hospital in the Bronx, New York.
During her early years Jannie Bell attended Dunbar Community School and was a member of Nazareth AME Church in Georgetown, South Carolina. Soon after gradating from Choppee High School in 1962, Jannie relocated to Bronx, New York. Upon arriving to New York, Jannie lived with her Aunt Carrie on Brook Avenue and became a member of First Glorious Church. While attending First Glorious Church Jannie served under the late Rev. A.B. Duncan.
Jannie was baptized, spirit filled and loved the Lord. She also attended the Bible classes to learn more about the word of God. She was a member of the Usher Board, Celestial Choir as well as the Mass Choir. She served faithfully and held several offices on all the auxiliaries. Upon the passing of Rev. A.B. Duncan, Jannie remained a member of First Glorious Church under Rev. Ronald Hare. She attended most of the services and you could not keep from going up to the church, even when she did not have a ride. She would respond that she could UBER or that she had cab fare.
After moving to New York, Jannie married Prince Armstrong on December 5, 1963, whom she met while in South Carolina. Jannie and Prince were married for 56 years and have three children.
An 1971 Jannie begin working for the City of New York. Prior to her employment with the city, Jannie attended nursing school, worked for Commercial Envelopes and the phone company. In 1984 she purchased her home in the Bronx and soon after begin working in the community. Jannie served as a community activist for over 30 years working with Northwest Bronx Clergy & Community, Crotona Community Coalition, Community Board 6, Mary Mitchell Family& Youth, Bronx Help Link, Bronx Community Research Review Board, and various food pantries.
Jannie was predeceased by her mother Maybell Canteen, brothers Arthur Canteen and Joe Lewis Canteen.
Jannie leaves to cherish her great memories: her husband, Prince Armstrong; her son Joey Armstrong of New York, NY; two daughters: Jeanetta Armstrong of Newark, NJ and Joyce Armstrong of Bronx, NY; two granddaughters: De’Anna McKnight of South Chesterfield, VA and Selena Armstrong (Robbie) of Bronx, New York; five sisters: Carol Atkins, Linda Holmes, Bertha Mae Funny of Bronx, NY, Annie Canteen-Littlejohn of Laurelton, NY and Stella Browne (Charles) of Charlotte, NC; one brother, Furney Canteen (Gladys) of Bronx of Bronx, New York; seven sisters-in-law, six brother –in-law, three god children and two great grandsons plus a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, family and friends who all loved her dearly.