Joan Elizabeth Jones Wellman was born December 17, 1942, to P.R. and Ruby Strickland Jones of Reidsville. She was educated in the public school system and graduated from Reidsville High School in 1960.
After graduation, she married Owen McKinley and they had two sons, William and James. She later married Bill Wellman, and they added a daughter, Joy, to their family.
The Wellmans owned and operated the Chicken House in Reidsville for a number of years until Bill passed away. Joan then worked as a night manager for several convenience stores, including Rabbits Truck Stop in Vidalia. Later, she worked in home health, caring for elderly adults.
Known to her friends as “Crazy Sadie”, she enjoyed playing cards, traveling, watching the ‘stories’ and gambling. In her younger years, she loved to frequent casinos in Cherokee, NC. She also loved to play BINGO and, until her health prevented her from doing so, she was a regular at The Moose Lodge in Vidalia. Sadie loved to visit with her friends and yell, “BINGO”, every chance she got. Two weeks before she passed, she surprised her friends by making one more appearance to the Lodge. They were so happy to see her and she was grateful to be able to be there to see all of them. The other players will miss her yelling, “Sit down and be quiet!” when they called BINGO before she got the chance. She also enjoyed spending time with her children and grandchildren.
She was a member of Pine Grove Baptist Church of Reidsville and loved to listen to Pastor Jeffrey Barnard’s message on Facebook live when she was not able to attend.
She was preceded in death by her parents and brothers, Melvin Jones and Billy Jones and sister, Evelyn Odum.
Left to cherish her memories are her children, William McKinley of Clayton, GA, James (Tricia) McKinley of Reidsville and Joy (Bryan) Willoughby of Garden City; grandchildren, Timothy Willoughby, Tara Willoughby, Kaitlynn Pessolano, Emma McKinley, Cayden McKinley and Marissa Knight; great grandson, Theodore; brother, Willie Joe Jones of High Falls, GA; sister, Janice (Steve) Cains of Augusta, GA; several nieces, nephews, cousins, relatives, and countless friends.
She will be truly missed.
A memorial service will be held 2:00pm Saturday, May 6, 2023 at Low Country Cremation and Burial, with Pastor Joseph Brock officiating. Burial will be private. The family will receive friends beginning at 1:00pm at the funeral home.
Memorials may be given to Community Hospice Foundation.
Low Country Cremation and Burial is serving the family.