Joanna Melvina Epps-Gay, beloved mother, daughter, sister, and friend passed away on Wednesday, May 23, 2018, at the age of 66 at Sentara Careplex hospital. Joanna was born November 8, 1951, in Newport News to Charles Epps Sr. and the late Thelma Novella Epps.
Joanna attended Bethel High School and was the first African American to graduate with honors from Bethel. She also received degrees from Thomas Nelson Community College and Christopher Newport University. Joanna worked for NASA Langley Research Center for 30 years and last worked at Hampton University. She was an avid reader, animal lover, and enjoyed studying metaphysics and holistic health.
Joanna loved life and her family dearly and was always a joy to be around and brought joy to many others. She leaves to cherish her memory her daughter Katrina Gay; her son Jason Gay (Brilliane Neal); brothers Charles Epps (Patricia), Tyrone Epps (Olivia), Wayne Epps (Katrina); grandchildren Marcus White, Brittani Washington, Mya Pearson, Jordan Gay, Gabriale Archer, and Nevaeh Archer; and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, and family members.
A memorial service will be held June 9, 2018, at 11:00 a.m. at Altmeyer Funeral Home – Denbigh Chapel (12893 Jefferson Ave., Newport News, 23608). In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Animal Aid Society, Inc. (80 Butler Farm Road, Hampton, VA 23666) or the Peninsula SPCA (523 J. Clyde Morris, Newport News, VA, 23601).
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