Betty Jordan was born Betty Jean Drake, November 21, 1928 to James and Fredonia Bundy Drake in Indianapolis, Indiana. Raised by a foster family, she grew up in Indianapolis where she attended grade school.
At the age of fourteen, she moved to New York to live with her grandmother, who she affectionately called Mother Bundy. Here in New York, she attended and graduated from George Washington High School. Early in the 1950's Betty went to work for the New York Dept. of Social Services as a social worker, where she remained until retirement.
April of 1955, she was united in marriage with Richard A. Jordan, who soon after, was drafted and sent to serve in the Korean War. Seven years later, in 1962, he passed away from injuries received while serving his country in the military. Some years after that, in 1968, Betty married Ernest F. Bronstorph, who died six months later in 1969. In the years that followed, she earned an Associate Degree in Science from Medgar Evers University, enjoyed trips to the Caribbean Islands, and embraced her passion for performing.
The joy of her life was theater and acting, a passion which she pursued throughout her years. .Bettye "Drake" Jordan studied with the late Frank Silvera and the late Ed Cambridge. She appeared in the first New York production of "Voice of the Gene" by Ellwoodson Williams and "The Domestic" by Rev. Mamie Perfit. Performing in a number of Off Broadway productions, in and around Harlem, she met and interacted with other actors and actresses who later became famous, such as Raymond St. Jacques, Sherman Hemsley, Isabel Sanford and Sidney Poitier.
Many of those who performed at the Cotton Club were her friends, and she was a part of the Harlem Senior Citizen Drama Workshop under LaVern Rector. A longtime resident of Harlem, she was a member of St. Phillips Episcopal Church. In 2021, Betty accepted Jesus Christ as her Savior, and decided to depart from this life and be with Him.
She leaves behind to celebrate her life: a cousin by marriage, Paricia Vaughn, caregivers, Cynthia Gwynn and Rosemary Fuller , a trusted confidante, Minister Yana Woodhouse; and a host of caring friends and neighbors, Ceil, Shade', Lois, Sharaine and Angela.