Floral 09

Mother Joyce Elaine Govan

October 19, 1955 ~ January 16, 2022 (age 66)


Born October 19, 1955 to her parents Whillenia Burkhalter (Mother) and John Eddie Ragsdale (Father).  Joyce was reared in Seattle, WA. Blessed to not only have the guide of her 

Parents but also her Grandmother, Mother Velma Ragsdale who raised her.  


Joyce attended Garfield High School, Seattle Community College and Boeing Electrician Training.  Her employment included CNA at Branch Villa Nursing Home, Boeing and American Building Maintenance.

Joyce accepted Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior and was baptized at an early age. She was a member of the New Hope Missionary Baptist Church, Seattle, WA.  She served also as a member of the Galilee Baptist Church, Moses Lake, WA and the New Beginnings Church, Seattle, WA as support to her sons’ ministry. 

Joyce is the Mother of one child Bishop Charles Dickerson whom she always and affectionately referenced as “My Baby” followed by “he’s all I got.”  Her Love and Mothers heart was extended to Velma Marie Ragsdale “Tuddie” her niece who she brought home and loved as her own daughter.

“Fast Black” this term of affection and tag embodies her character and conduct.  She was known for being outspoken, witty, bold and without a filter. Her one-line wise cracks, long never-ending arguments and her capacity to laugh at most things made her the life of the party and sometimes the end of the party, “she could turn it out.”  Not only was Joyce humorous but she was genuinely caring and sincere embracing the young - many who regarded her as “Momma Joyce” or “Auntie Joyce.”  

She was always well dressed, color coordinated and given to fashion. Outfits were complete with hat, sunglasses and matching purse.  Artistic, exceptional cook and housekeeper.

Joyce was proceeded in death by her parents, her husband Sunny Govan, her grandson D’Andre Charles Dickerson, Sr and four of her 22 maternal siblings (Sidney Ford, Eugene Cater, Debbie Cater, Rodney Ford) and her one paternal sister Junie.  She leaves to cherish her memory: 

Her only Child: 

Bishop Charles Dickerson (Sacramento, CA)

Grand Children: 

Jy’Nae Dickerson (Seattle, WA), Jecoliah Dickerson (Sacramento, CA) and Josiah Dickerson (Raleigh 

Durham, NC) 

Great Grandchildren: 

D”Andre Charles Dickerson Jr. “DJ” (Seattle, WA), Antione Michael Yancey, Camri Tolbert, and Egypt  Medley, all of (Sacramento, CA)


Denise Smothers, (Burien, WA, Gloria Collins, Carol Marshall, LaDonna Ford, Tina Cater, David Cater, 

Sir John Cater, and Greg Cater, all of (Seattle, WA.) Halfred Cater, (Renton, WA,) Olivia Ford, Portland, OR. 


Family raised with Joyce as siblings: 

Doretha Ford, Charles Neal, Dorothy Neal, Evelyn Neal and Patricia Williams. 


A host of nieces, nephews, and other family members and her ex-husband friend to the end, William Walker “Billy” all left to cherish Joyce’s Memory.

She fought, she struggled, she kept the faith and now she rest from it all.  She departed this life Monday, January 17, 2022, to live eternally with our Savoir.

“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”  II Timothy 4:7

To send flowers to the family, please visit our floral store.

Memorial Tree
A Memorial Tree was planted for Mother Joyce

We are deeply sorry for your loss - the staff at Main Office

Join in honoring their life - plant a memorial tree


February 5, 2022

10:00 AM to 11:00 AM
New Hope Baptist Church
124 21st Ave
Seattle, WA 98122

Funeral Service
February 5, 2022

11:00 AM
New Hope Baptist Church
124 21st Ave
Seattle, WA 98122

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