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Welcome to the memorial page for

William Rudolph Joyner

February 9, 1930 ~ July 31, 2017 (age 87)

Williamston, NC

Mr. William Rudolph Joyner, 87, passed away on Saturday, July 29, 2017 at his home. A graveside memorial service will be held on Friday, September 8th at the Baltimore National Cemetery, 5501 Frederick Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21228. Those wishing to sign William Joyner’s guestbook may do so at

William Joyner was born February 9, 1930 to Charlie and Viola (Little) Joyner in Martin County North Carolina. He grew up in the small town of Williamston, North Carolina where he graduated from E.J. Hayes High School. Shortly after his marriage to Mary (Rhodes) Joyner and the birth of his oldest daughter, he enlisted in the United States Army. William worked as a combat engineer at a number of US military bases before being deployed to Japan and South Korea during the Korean War. During his term of service, he was awarded the Korean Service Medal 3 Bronze Stars and the UN Service Medal 2 Bronze Stars.

After four years in the United States Army, William Joyner received an honorable discharge and shortly thereafter, he moved his family to Baltimore, Maryland. He simultaneously matriculated at Morgan State University and began a career at the United States Post Office that lasted thirty years.

William enjoyed watching sports and played a fairly rigorous game of tennis until an old back injury made playing impossible. He also displayed a love of gardening: growing sweet potatoes, collard greens, tomatoes and even watermelons. He also loved to watch his favorite evangelical pastor Bishop TD Jakes, on television.

Last, but certainly not least, anyone who knew William Joyner would agree he was a strong willed and fiercely independent man who lived his life his way. He enjoyed life, friends, cars, clothes, traveling and doing whatever he wanted to do. Frank Sinatra’s “My Way”, which was one of his favorite songs, could easily serve as the theme song of his final days. The song begins: And now, the end is near And so I face the final curtain My friend, I'll say it clear I'll state my case, of which I'm certain I've lived a life that's full I've traveled each and every highway But more, much more than this I did it my way And ends: For what is a man, what has he got If not himself, then he has naught To say the things he truly feels And not the words of one who kneels The record shows I took the blows And did it my way Yes, it was my way. 

Survivors include his only sister, Charlie Mae Smith of Baltimore, Maryland and his three daughters: Vera Giddings (Howard) of Arlington, Texas, Vickie Cookley (Robert) of Catonsville, Maryland and Valera Commissiong of Washington, DC. He also had 4 grandchildren: Lori Dixon, Stephen Cookley, Stephanie Goines and Stacy Cookley and 3 great grandchildren: Dana, Davie and Caden.

 Service Information

A service summary is not available

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