She was a beloved wife, mother, grandmother, sister, aunt, cousin, and friend.
Helen Lucas Payton, 79, was a native of Falmouth, Virginia, and current resident of Pemberton, New Jersey. She transitioned from this earthly life on Tuesday, May 08, 2018, surrounded by her devoted family.
Helen was born to the late Gordon and Emily Juggins on December 23, 1938. At a young age she joined Shiloh Old Site Baptist Church in Garrisonville, Virginia, where she sang in the Senior Choir for many years.
Helen graduated from Walker Grant High School in Fredericksburg, Virginia in 1957, and was a member of the Walker Grant Alumni Association. She then attended Delaware State University where she obtained a degree in Nursing and was also crowned Homecoming Queen. Helen obtained a Certificate for Training in Practical Nursing from Fredericksburg-Stafford Schools with Mary Washington Hospital in May 1965, which allowed her to practice as a nurse in the area. Helen was hired as the first African-American nurse integrating the Pratt Medical Center with Dr. Peter Smith at Allergy Partners of Fredericksburg. She also worked at Washington Hospital Center, Mary Washington Hospital, Riverside Nursing Home, and Allergy and Asthma Center of Fredericksburg with Dr. Seth Craig until her retirement. She was also the co-proprietor of Heleugene Florist. Helen loved decorating Christmas trees and faithfully participated in the Hope House Festival of Trees, Relay for Life, Girl Scouts of America Leader and Camp Director, Boy Scouts Den Mother, and was a wedding planner and coordinator. She was known for her artistic creativity that included decorating Christmas trees, wreaths, eggs and flowers.
Helen was united in Holy Matrimony to Gardy W. Payton, Sr., on May 19, 2007. She relocated to Pemberton, NJ, with her husband and became a member of Assembly of Christ Baptist Church under the pastoral leadership of Pastor Reginald Blount, Sr. Prior to her declining health, Helen was an active member and Mother of the Church.
She was preceded in death by her siblings: James (Pete) Juggins, Gloria Baylor, Mary Jett, and Joseph Juggins.
Helen leaves to cherish her precious memories, her loving husband Gardy W. Payton, Sr.; 2 daughters: Karen Cooke and Penny N. Hairston (William); 2 sons: Frederick “Randy” Lucas (Sharon) and Bryant Lucas; 3 step-sons: Charles Reginald Payton (Mary), Brian “Keith” Chester (Laverne), Gardy Payton, Jr. (Lolitta); grandchildren: Tyler, Taylor, Brianna (Malcolm), Justin, Korrie, Connor, Ameer, Emmanuel (Tina), Voncia; great-grandson Marcus; 2 sisters: Joyce Mercer and Yvonne Archey; one brother Gordon Juggins, Jr; sisters-in-law: Barbara Stafford, Gloria Young , Portia Harris, Betty Gaskins, Delilah Jones, Renna Coper, and Darlene Wilson; brothers-in-law: E. Gary Mercer, Otis Archey, Thomas Jett, Harold Payton, Richard Coper, Arthur “Sonny” Jones, and Tyrone Wilson; god-son Ronald “Jack” Gibson (Cassandra); godmother Marie V. Hawkins; special and long-time friend Dearsie Carroll; and a host of nieces, nephews, relatives and friends.