PAYNE, Joyce Claire Carlton , a resident of Tallahassee and formerly of Plant City, passed away on January 6. A 5th generation Floridian, she was born September 10, 1925 to James DeWitt Carlton and Maude Griffin Carlton in Plant City where she grew up in a large extended family. Joyce graduated from Florida State College for Women/Florida State University in 1947 with a degree in social work. Later that year, she married the love of her life, Robert Payne, and they began their married life in Evanston, Illinois where he was a graduate student at Northwestern University's Garrett Theological Seminary. Following his ordination as a Methodist minister, they moved to Bridgeport, Connecticut where he served as a pastor while continuing graduate work at Union Theological Seminary in New York. Joyce was an active partner in their shared ministry there and in churches in Connecticut, NY, NJ, and First United Methodist in Plant City. She was a devoted and loving mother to three daughters, Gloria, Carol, and Patricia. Known for her gracious hospitality, Joyce spent many hours baking and cooking and entertaining friends and family. Her lovely alto voice was part of many church choirs, the Plant City Community Chorus, and a soloist for numerous weddings. A highlight for her was singing in the Lakeland Choral Society and performing at Carnegie Hall under the direction of John Rutter. A lifelong Methodist, Joyce was a woman of strong faith and character. She was very active in United Methodist Women and held offices at the local and district levels. Prior to moving to Tallahassee, she was a member of First United Methodist Church, Plant City and the Seekers Sunday School class. In addition to working as a substitute teacher, she served in many volunteer capacities, including delivering meals on wheels. Joyce was preceded in death by her husband of 59 years, Rev. Robert Payne, their daughter Patricia (Patty) Meers, and her brother DeWitt Carlton. She is survived by daughters Gloria Colvin of Tallahassee and Carol Brinkley of Williamsburg, VA, sons-in-law Jesse Colvin, Kent Brinkley, and Paul Meers, grandchildren Emily Adkins (Melvin), Kara Colvin, Michael Meers, and Matthew Meers, great-grand children Ayden Fryar and Mason Adkins, brothers Bruce Carlton (Annelle) and George Carlton (Marie), sisters-in-law Patricia Swails and Ann Payne, and numerous nieces, nephews, and friends. A memorial service will be held at Trinity United Methodist Church in Tallahassee on January 17 at 10:30 am. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the music program at Trinity United Methodist Church, P. O. Box 1086, Tallahassee, FL 32302; the Robert and Joyce Payne Scholarship, Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary, 2121 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL; or the Florida United Methodist Children's Home, 51 Children's Way, Enterprise, FL 32725.
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Published in TBO.com on Jan. 15, 2014