NEWPORT NEWS, Va. — POF Joshua Devonte Howard, 18, of Newport News, Va. was a gift from God on Aug. 29, 1995, born to his parents Amanda Bell-White of Elizabethtown, N.C., and Ernest Howard of Cincinatti, Ohio and was very loved by all his family. He passed away Thursday, July 3, 2014.
Joshua brought joy to the lives of his grandparents, Paul Layton and the late Cynthia Layton of Council, in whose home he was raised, and Schuyler Bell and wife Elaine of Lancaster, S.C.
Joshua was an Eagle Scout, loved baseball, music, and was an honor student. He never met a stranger.
He graduated from East Bladen High School in 2013 and went on to join the Navy, following in the footsteps of his "Pa Perry" and was stationed in Newport News, Va. He touched the hearts of many with his smile, giving heart, determination, and perseverance against all odds.
Joshua is survived by his mother, Amanda Bell and stepfather, Leon White (Daddy), both of Elizabethtown, N.C.; father, Ernest Howard of Cincinatti, Ohio; sister, Cheyenne Daniels of Elizabethtown, N.C.; grandparents Paul Layton and the late Cynthia Layton of Council, N.C. and Ava Lee and Ronnie Howard of Dodge City, Kan.; great-grandparents Perry Robertson and the late Betty Robertson of Mt. Airy, N.C., and the late Clarence and Alice Pearl Layton of Elizabethtown, N.C.; aunts and uncles Lara and Theodore Johnson of White Lake, N.C., Allison and Bobby Hardin of Myrtle Beach, S.C., Johnathan Layton and family of Clinton, N.C., Jason and Kimberly Layton and family of Raleigh, N.C. A very special great-aunt and great-uncle, Sheree and Steve Barnard of Mt Airy, N.C.; cousins, Zachary and Brooke Johnson of White Lake, N.C., Chad and Amanda Barnard and family of Mt. Airy, N.C., Justin and Tabitha Barnard and family of Mt. Airy, N.C., and his "adopted" family, the "Maultsbys" of Elizabethtown, N.C. and lots of special family and friends. He will truly be missed by all.
The family will receive friends from 6 until 8 p.m. Monday, July 7, at Bladen Gaskins Funeral Home in Elizabethtown, N.C..
The funeral service will be Tuesday, July 8, at Mt. Horeb Presbyterian Church in Council, N.C. at 2 p.m. followed by a burial in the church cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Boy Scouts of America.