Floral 07

Joy (Brannon) Wheeless

September 10, 1927 ~ May 11, 2020 (age 92)

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God sent Angels to escort Joy Brannon Wheeless to Heaven on May 11, 2020 at 2pm.

As a gift from God, Joy entered the world on September 10, 1927, to Lottie and Bill Brannon and sister Lorraine of Rockdale, Texas. The Brannons resided in the Sandy Creek area of Rockdale, Texas. Joy started grade school at the Sandy Creek school, which is still in service today. The Brannons went through the Great Depression picking cotton, farming and whatever carpenter work was available at the time.

The Brannons moved to Bryan, Texas, where her sister Judy was born.  Joy continued her schooling in Bryan, Texas and graduated from Steven F. Austin High School in the class of 1945.  Joy went to work at Woolworth's in downtown Bryan and later took a job as a Dental assistant for Dr. Jones of Bryan, Texas, not realizing that would be a profession she cherished her entire life. Joy was charismatic and her passion was to see or make people around her happy or comfortable. She always said "it's not what you have it's what you will be remembered for."

In 1949, while on an outing with Lorraine, Judy, and Lorraine's boyfriend, the four of them went to "Hot Rod Hill" race track in Bryan, Texas to watch the dirt cars race on the roundy round dirt track. Joy wearing a bright red dress, was challenged if she would get in a race car and drive. She did and won the heat race that night. She had a  very determined and competitive spirit.

She married Bill Wheeless on November 22, 1952. He joined the United States Air Force in 1953, and they were stationed in Ft. Worth, Texas where Bill was part of the B-36 Strategic Air Command Bombing Squadron, and where son Robert was born.

Joy also continued her career as a dental assistant working for Dr. Cash, she loved that job.  Joy and her family moved to Dallas, Texas in 1963. Bill worked in corporate sales while Joy did product demonstrations and modeling for Sanger Harris and Neiman Marcus. She also did product promotions for the Gibson Corporation. She worked directly for Mr. Gibson himself. Mr. Gibson put Joy in charge of the sales booth at Market Hall that year all by herself. She was recognized at Market Hall over the PA system for selling over 1 million dollars in products at the 1964 show. Mr. Gibson invited Bill and Joy over to his home where Joy was given a 5 dollar bottle of perfume for her tremendous sales achievement, she always laughed about that gesture.

In 1969, Bill, Joy and Robert moved to Rockport, Texas, where Joy purchased a Merle Norman Studio. She went to California for training on the Merle Norman products. She met Merle Nethercutt Norman. He took her on a tour of his world re-known Nethercutt Car collection. He then took Joy out to dinner in one of the museum cars to celebrate her buying a Merle Norman Studio in Rockport, Texas. She loved her studio, so much she started Joy's Boutique where she made Homecoming and Prom dresses by hand. She was happiest when she helping young women clear up their complexion, or teaching them about make-up, piercing their ears or making them the dress of their dreams!

Joy and Bill later moved to Bryan where they started their business, raised cattle and planted a fruit and vegetable garden. Joy and Bill also helped their aging parents during this time.

Joy and Bill moved to Houston in 1993, where Joy hosted family events and was ready to go places and do things.

The year of 2009 brought sadness when Bill, her husband of 56 years passed away. 

For the next 11 years, Joy and her son Robert enjoyed traveling and sharing adventures.

She was a very strong woman, and always there for you with a solution or opinion.  Joy enjoyed riding in Antique cars, attending car events and social gatherings.  She loved spending time with friends and family the most.  She was a Mother to many, she loved and treated her friends just as they were family.  Joy said "Every time you see a Cardinal/Redbird, think about me." That's Me, Saying Hello!  We will Mom....

Joy is survived by her son Robert, sister Judy, and many nieces and nephews, she loved all of them dearly.

The Memorial Service to honor Joy Wheeless is scheduled for 2:00 PM Saturday, May 30, 2020 at Cypress-Fairbanks Funeral Home located at 9926 Jones Road, Houston, Texas 77065.  Social distancing and face masks will be required.

A graveside service will be held at the Lamar Cemetery in Rockport, Texas at a later date.


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