Joan Hyatt passed peacefully on Thursday February 9, 2023, at UTMB Hospice Care in Galveston, Texas.
Joan was born on April 22, 1932, in Winona, Mississippi to Francis and Christine Neal. The Neal family moved to Kosciusko, Mississippi in 1934 where Joan would spend her childhood. She graduated from Kosciusko High School in 1950. She then attended Mississippi State College for Women or “The W” (now called Mississippi University for Women) with a Bachelor of Science in Library Science. After graduating in 1954, she moved to Racine, Wisconsin to take a job as a branch librarian for the Racine Public Library.
While working in Racine, she met her future husband, John D. Hyatt. The two were married in 1955 and enjoyed traveling and living in several different cities in the US, before finally settling in Galveston, Texas in 1964. In Galveston, Joan worked at Galveston College as a librarian from 1970-1980. In 1980, she received her Masters Degree in Education from the University of Houston – Clear Lake. She then went to work for Galveston Independent School District, spending many years as the librarian for Weis Middle School, Central Middle School and Ball High School. She retired from GISD in 1994. In retirement, she and John worked to develop the Robbie Farmer Memorial Library at Moody Methodist Church in Galveston.
Joan was very active in her community, church, and social groups. She was a member and served as President of the Junior League of Galveston County, the Omicron Chapter of Delta Kappa Gamma, and the Dough Girls Investment Club. She spent countless hours playing bridge and mahjong with many friends and was an avid reader with membership in several book clubs.
Joan is preceded in death by her parents, Francis and Christine Neal, son David Hyatt, husband John Hyatt, sister Mary Betty McFall, and her very best friend Judy Biggs.
Joan is survived by her brother Edward Neal and wife Sue Neal, daughter Christine Hyatt-Boyd and husband Loren Boyd, her granddaughter Anna Hyatt, and many nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends.
The family would like to express our sincere gratitude to the staff at UTMB Jennie Sealy ICU Unit and Hospice Care Unit. Your compassion, care, and attention to Joan made her time there comfortable, and we are forever grateful.
A memorial service will be held on Tuesday, February 21, 2023 at 2:00pm at First Presbyterian Church, Galveston, with Reverend Steve Hill officiating. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to First Presbyterian Church or the charity of one’s choice.
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