Joan E. (Patrice) O’Bryant passed away peacefully with her children lovingly at her bedside on January 7, 2020 in Austin, TX at the age of 83. Joan is survived by her children Manuel J. O’Bryant (Jeanette) of Tampa, FL; Mary Ellen (O’Bryant) Gitachu of Austin, TX, Camille O’Bryant of Atascadero, CA, Grandchildren, London Egemonye, Jr., Diamond Howard, Kathleen Gitachu, Great Grandson Dream J. Weldon, Uncle Jimmie Jackson and a host of cousins, nieces and nephews. Joan is preceded in death by her daughter Kathleen O’Bryant, parents Bruce and Frankie Hailstalk and grandson, Octavius Deon Ware.
Joan was born on December 2, 1936 in Boston, MA. She graduated from Girls High School in 1955. She was predominantly raised by her great-grandmother, “Sister,” who is also daughter Mary Ellen’s namesake; grandmother (Mattie Thompson) and aunt (Marylee Jackson). Commonly called Joanie, she worked in New York and Boston as a telephone operator and attended college studying nursing. In her early twenties she married the late Manuel O’Bryant and focused on raising her children.
After her children completed high school and began their college educations, Joanie entered back into the workplace where she managed projects for information technology services at Charles T. Main Inc. and Boston University. She then served as a Financial Aid Advisor at Northeastern University until the time of her retirement.
Joanie enjoyed life-long friendships with Carol Vieira, Amelia Lopes and Kathleen Dash - and her children Camille and Kathleen are their namesakes. Her dearest friends also include Cicily O’Bryant, Carmen Goodridge, Isabelle Nix, Cynthia Scott Finch and many more extended family and friends from high school and her former residence at Blake Estates, Hyde Park, MA.
During her retirement, Joan enjoyed crocheting, playing Bingo, visiting Foxwoods Casino, and visiting with friends and family as often as she could and moved to Texas to live with her daughter and grandchildren in 2012.
She will always be remembered as a generous person with a great sense of humor, sharp wit and commitment to education. She served as a second mother to many and loved her family and friends unconditionally.
In lieu of flowers or cards, donations in her memory may be made to the John D. O’Bryant African-American Institute at https://giving.northeastern.edu/live/profiles/86-john-d-obryant-african-american-institute or Therapy Pet Pals of Austin Texas at http://therapypetpals.org/.
The family would like to thank her caretakers Lillie, Maggie and the staff at Austin Wellness and Rehabilitation Center in Austin, TX for their dedication in providing quality care and friendship, especially in the last few years of her life.
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