Joy Booth Arant (Joy Louise Booth) passed away peacefully on November 19, 2020, at home after a brief illness. She was born in Palestine, Texas, on May 8, 1924, the only child of James Taplin Booth and Eddie Mills Booth. She spent her youth in Center, Texas, where she worked cattle, barrel raced in rodeos and danced in honkytonks with her dad, while learning to appreciate the finer arts of fashion and entertaining from her mom.
She met her husband Rock (Albert F. Arant) at the Army Air Corps base in Hondo, Texas during WWII. Being from a small town, she loved the opportunities for travel that her husband’s career in the Air Force provided. From skiing at an isolated radar site in occupied Japan to riding the sheikh’s horse on the desert coast of Libya, she was open to all new adventures. “I just wasn’t afraid,” she would often say. Her strong faith was a central part of her life. Beginning at the First Baptist Church in Center, Texas, and culminating with the chapel at Falcon’s Landing, she was involved in every church or chapel where she lived, teaching Sunday school, vacation bible school and uncounted Bible studies classes, sharing her enthusiastic love for the Lord and his word. When she and Rock moved to Falcons Landing she was instrumental in setting up the chapel services, arranging for military chaplains to come preach. She also had a strong history of volunteering as a Gray Lady assisting in hospitals, as an Arlington Lady, as coordinator for Falcons Landing Bridge Club and many other organizations and ministries.
Another love of Joy’s was drama, and she enjoyed participating in the many productions put on by the Falcons Landing Players over the years. She and Rock were known not only for their great devotion to one another but for their Southern hospitality and for their amazing moves on the dance floor. She loved people. She was known for the many stories of her life she loved to tell, but was also known for engaging people to tell their stories and to live their lives to the fullest, whoever they were, or wherever they were. Joy was just not her name, but the way she lived her life.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Col Albert F. Arant. She is survived by her sons, Kirk F. (Yasha) Arant of Sterling, Va, and Randy Booth (Sherry) Arant of Locust Grove, VA; three granddaughters, Jessica (Hutch Hutchison) Arant of Omaha, Nebraska, Mariah Booth Arant of Berryville, VA, and Taplin Haas (Juan Carlos Nogales Yale) Arant of Herndon, VA; her step-grandchildren, Paul (Trisha) Brown of Chicago, IL, Amanda (Ian) Campbell of Charles Town, WV, John (Luna) Guy of Locust Grove, VA; six step-great-grandchildren; her beloved cousin/brother, James (Mona) Campbell of Center, Texas; her brother-in-law, James (Flo) Arant of Orangeburg, SC; her honorary third son, Matt (Suzanne) Middleton of Christ Church, New Zealand; and countless beloved family members in Texas, South Carolina, and Virginia.
Burial will be in Arlington Cemetery at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations in Joy’s memory maybe made to the First Baptist Church, 117 Cora St., Center, Texas, 75935.