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On September 29, 2023, Joyce Illene Bartel May went to become her glorious home in heaven.
Joyce was born in Cordell, OK to Henry and Irene Bartel and grew up in colony/corn area on the family’s farm, attended school at Corn Bible Academy and went on to graduate from SWOSU with a degree in Music and speech. She then went to work for the government managing service clubs at Ft. Sill in Lawton, OK where she met her husband, a young soldier (Sargent) from Minnesota who had graduated from Eddison High School in Minneapolis in 1962.
Joyce was very active in music clubs and symphony leagues in Oklahoma City, Houston, and Brazosport. And other organizations supporting music. She was a gifted musician and was best known for playing the piano without sheet music. When Joyce and John were first married, she taught speech and debate at McPherson Brethren College in McPherson, KS and Clinton High School in Clinton, OK.
She traveled with her husband to many places and moved several times during their career, lived in California and Lake Jackson, TX where her husband was the President of Texas Dow Employees Credit Union, (Tinker Federal Credit Union) and president of both credit unions, but Oklahoma was always home. In 2002, Joyce and John moved back to take care of the family farms and was still active in the management and day to day operations.
Joyce and John were long time members of St. Lukes United Methodist Church since 1973.
Preceded in death by her parent’s Henry and Irene Bartel of Weatherford, OK, In-laws Art and June May of Minneapolis. Sister-in-law Kathy Kopka (Richard), sister-in-law Judy. She is survived by her husband of 57 years John Martin May, son Joseph May (spouse Michelle) her brother Jonathan (Elsie) Bartel of Colony, OK, brother-in-law Skip (Deb) of MN, sister-in-law’s Mary (Don) of MN and Theresa (Greg) of MN, as well as many nieces and nephews throughout the United States.
Visitation will be held from 5pm – 7pm, Friday October 6, 2023. Funeral services will be held October 7, 2023, 2:00 pm at Buchanan Funeral Home located 8712 N Council Rd, Oklahoma City OK 73132.
Interment will be at 11:00 AM, Tuesday, October 10, 2023, at Ft. Sill national cemetery in Lawton, Oklahoma.