Joyce was born on February 2, 1950 to Oscar and Daisy McCollum in Monett, Arkansas. Oscar moved the family north and settled in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Joyce’s sister Debbie was born on June 23, 1954 in Ann Arbor.
Joyce was a tomboy, she would rather play kick the can with the boys than dress up with dolls. Being the big sister she placed herself between her mother and sister whenever conflicts arose. Throughout her life she was always helping others, trying to right the wrongs.
Joyce met Douglas W. Brownlee the spring of 1967. Joyce having just returned from Daytona Beach, Florida on spring break with friends drove north to a nightclub where a band she met while in Florida was playing. Joyce and Doug shared the last dance of the evening together. Doug went home that night and told his mother he had met the girl he was going to marry.
After dating for three months, Doug reported to Navy boot camp while Joyce started her senior year in high school. They married on July 20, 1968 and left on their honeymoon, which was the drive back to NAS Oceania, Virginia Beach, Virginia.
Joyce loved Virginia Beach; she was golden brown from the sun and sand. She worked for Rose Hall, an exclusive store for The Mother and her Daughter. It was not long before she was modeling swimsuits and evening dresses. Long auburn hair and green eyes, man what a beautiful woman.
Annette was born on June 16, 1970 and Joyce and Doug became parents, and three months later Doug was transferred to VF-161, a Fighter Squadron out of Miramar, California. With all their belongings packed into their car they headed west. Joyce did most of the driving. After the Navy, it was two years in Tulsa, Oklahoma while Doug went to a technical school, then it was back to Michigan.
Joyce had many jobs and she excelled in everything she applied herself to. After she graduated from college she took a job as a receptionist for a family doctor in Clinton MI. Twenty-five years later she retired from Intergraded Healthcare Associates as the Office Manager of Livingston Pediatrics located in Brighton, Michigan. Along the way she found time to raise a family, Teresa was born on May 17, 1974 and Marcia on August 14, 1978. Joyce’s email started with the initials of the girl’s first names ATM.
Joyce loved to fish, she picked out the bass boat they bought and she spent lots of time casting and catching pan fish, pike, bass, and salmon in Lake Michigan and cod off Gloucester MA.
Joyce loved to travel, with a pop-up camper attached to the car the family traveled all over the U.S. and Canada. Joyce always wanted to go to Italy and what better way then by ship, 17 days of new experiences. Joyce’s passion was taking pictures and scrapbooking the adventure. Everywhere they went Joyce had her camera, from Hawaii, Ireland, and Alaska to Lake Louise in BC, to name a few of the places they went. She always said “we’re having an adventure.” Joyce always had a smile, a twinkle in her green eyes and a laugh that would warm your heart.
She will be missed.
Brothers Mortuary and Crematory is honored to care for the family. Condolences and memories may be shared with the family at www.brothersmortuary.com.