On Monday, December 6th, Joyce Greenwood was welcomed at Heaven’s doors by her loving husband, Robert, her parents, Roy and Dorothy Buffalo Head, brothers, Ronald Lee, Steve, Duane, Timothy, Mark, Ronnie and Keith, two sisters Mayla and Betty, and host of family and friends. Joyce was born in Pawnee, Oklahoma on December 19th, 1950. Her parents were Roy and Dorothy Blueback-Bufflao Head. Maternal grandparents were Ernest Blueback and Nellie King-Blueback. Paternal grandparents were Mark Buffalo Head and Mary DeLodge. Joyce was preceded in death by her parents, six brothers, two sisters and her husband.
Survivors include one son, Brent and wife, Kennetha of Edmond, OK, and two daughters, Shane and Shaula of Oklahoma City, OK. Joyce’s pride and joy were her three children and her eleven grandchildren, grandsons, Isaiah, Miwese, Josiah, Adrian, Julian, David, Andrew, Elijah, and Jacobi and granddaughters, Anevay and Mekai. Joyce is also survived by her siblings Dwight and wife Judy Buffalo Head and Mary and husband Ernie Hamilton both of Ponca City, OK.
Joyce attended school in Marland, OK where she was known for her athletic basketball ability. She then attended Northern Oklahoma College at Tonkawa, OK where she graduated with a double major in sociology and community counseling from Oklahoma City University in Oklahoma City, OK.
On January 23rd, 1971, Joyce married Robert E. Greenwood of Oklahoma City, OK and was married for 47 years before his passing. Joyce was employed by Southwestern Bell Telephone company where she retired from in March of 1998, after 23 years of service. In 1999, Joyce returned to her home town in Ponca City, where she served as the Ponca Indian Child Welfare Director for five years. She was committed to her job and was very compassionate to the children and families she provided services to. Because of her diligence and tireless efforts, the children received stability in their once torn lives. Today, many of the children remain in stable homes, and are being nurtured by loving and caring families.
In 2004, Joyce was hired as case manager for Edwin Fair Mental Health Center where she was employed for three and a half years. In 2009, Joyce returned to her home in Oklahoma City where she worked for Jordan’s Crossing for three years as a case manager and drug/alcohol counselor. In 2012, she retired from the workforce to care for her husband.
Joyce’s early church upbringing was in the Ponca Indian Methodist Church in White Eagle Community. When she was fifteen years old she began teaching Vacation Bible School. Her passion was working with the children and youth. She would often accompany her mother sitting around the women’s circle, sharing home cooked meals, sewing quilts, and telling stories of their life experiences. Joyce attended church at Mary Lee Clark in Del City where she served in many capacities on the local, district, and conference levels of the Methodist Church.
Joyce enjoyed life to the fullest! Her philosophy was to live each day to the fullest and not take life for granted. She lived her life accordingly:
“To laugh often and much; To win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; To earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; To appreciate beauty, to find the best in others; To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.” - Ralph Waldo Emerson
Joyce had many interests. Her favorite pastime was outdoor camping in the Arbuckles with her family, especially her grandchildren. She loved to take hikes in Sulphur, OK. She enjoyed listening to music; Ponca, Chickasaw, and Choctaw tribal hymns, Native flute music, cool jazz, and rhythm and blues. She and her family are avid Oklahoma State fans and also Oklahoma City Thunder fans.
Joyce leaves a legacy for her children and grandchildren. Words cannot express how much our mother, grandmother, sister, auntie, and friend will be missed. Be comforted in knowing that Joyce left these final words for her children and grandchildren: “Be good to each other and stay strong in the Lord. God will be your strength and comforter in your time of need. My love for you is unconditional; the seeds have been planted, now it is up to each of you to sow those seeds and reap the harvest of your hard work.”
Wake service will be held Tuesday at 7pm at Mary Lee Clark Methodist Church in Del City, OK, officiated by Reverend David Wilson. Wednesday night wake service will be at 7pm and Funeral service will be Thursday at 10 am, both at the Otoe-Missouria Cultural Building in Red Rock, OK, officiated by Pastor Jimmy White. Grace Memorial Funeral Home will be conducting the burial at Ponca Indian Cemetery.
Casket Bearers will be grandsons, Isaiah, Miwese, Josiah, Adrian and Julian Greenwood and David Tristan. Honorary pall bearers are her son, Brent Greenwood, brother Dwight Buffalo Head, Ernie Hamilton, Batiste Jones, and Fred Others.