In Memory of




Obituary for Taylor A Joyce

Taylor was born in 1931 in the coal mining community of Old Jenny Lind, Arkansas, to Andy and Velma Joyce. After an elementary school education at the local one-room schoolhouse, his family moved to San Pedro, California where he could see the ships coming to port from the windows of his junior high. After two years, the family returned to Arkansas, where Taylor graduated at the top of his class from Greenwood High School.

As a child, Taylor attended many of the tent revival meetings that popped up in his community, and went to church with his maternal grandmother, the daughter of an Advent Christian preacher. These influenced his decision to pursue a life as a Church of Christ minister. His was the first in generations of his family to work beyond the coal mines.

At age 17, he began to attend summer youth meetings at the former May & Alabama Church of Christ in Fort Smith. There, attendees were to taught to read and sing shaped note music in four part harmony, and young men learned to deliver gospel sermons. It was at those meetings that Taylor began his lifelong journey as a minister, and met his future wife, a young woman from Western Oklahoma, Glena Walker. They married in 1952 and made their first home at the residence aside that very church. Life as a preacher drew them to live in numerous places--Louisiana, Texas, and Oklahoma--before returning to live in Fort Smith.

Taylor regularly preached at two congregations—Tucker Church of Christ, in the farming community of Tucker, Oklahoma, and Texas Road Church of Christ in Fort Smith. He was 91 years of age when he delivered his final sermons at both congregations in October of 2022. Through the years, Taylor held countless gospel meetings across the U.S, and became known for his extemporaneous sermons and his extensive ability to quote the Bible from memory. He also authored many articles for religious publications such as the Old Paths Advocate, published book called "Show Me the Way to Go Home", and wrote several gospel songs, including "All of This and Heaven, Too". He touched many lives through this work.

In addition to his work as a preacher, Taylor had several simultaneous careers, most notably as a reporter and newscaster on former KFSA TV. In the 1960’s and 70’s, Taylor collected, videoed, and wrote the week day news broadcasts, which he delivered at 6pm and 10pm. His television work was followed by a job as a journalist for the Southwest Times Record (where a number of his articles were picked up by the Associated Press), a stint with the Fort Smith Chamber of Commerce, and ultimately, a position serving as Chief Deputy Clerk for the Western District of the US Federal Courts in Arkansas.

He was preceded in death by his parents: Andy Joyce and Velma Griffith Joyce, and three brothers: James Dollar, Edward Dollar, and Herbert Dollar.

Funeral services are 1:00PM, Saturday, November 25, 2023 at Ocker-Putman Funeral Home in Fort Smith with burial to follow in Old Jenny Lind Cemetery in the community of Jenny Lind, Arkansas.

He is survived by: his wife of 71 years, Glena Walker Joyce; his three children, Robert (Bob) Joyce of Le Marque, Texas, Kathy Grayson of Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, and Brenda Joyce-Shufer of Claremont, California; his brother William Joyce of Fort Smith; two sister-in-law, Charlotte Joyce and Ilse Dollar; and by five grandchildren, five great-grand-children, and numerous nieces and nephews.