By Iran “Bang” Paylor 

In loving memory of Joanne Paylor, may she
rest in peace and power; Courtesy of Author

Joanne Paylor was born in Washington, D.C., in 1958 to Cordie Mae Paylor. She remained a native of the SW quadrant of the nation’s capital until she passed away in her home on March 8, 2020. 

Joanne always strived to obtain more and believed in education as one of her priorities. Upon graduating from Washington Dix Street Academy, she embraced the notion of higher education and became the first member of the Paylor family to attend College. She enrolled in The University of the District of Columbia and was motivated by her Aunt Helen “Aunt Liz” Blue, who was a nurse, to pursue a Nursing degree. The ever-growing challenges and responsibility of single motherhood forced her to withdraw from undergraduate courses and find a job to support her family. 

Her residence at 1510 First St. in SW was known, and in the community she was well regarded as one of the Paylor sisters, with siblings Billy, Cookie, Angie, and Nikki – the Paylor siblings in the SW community had an unforgettable reputation. Joanne would volunteer and help out with programming at the now historic Southwest House under the direction of Mrs. Mack & Mrs. Patrick. She loved dancing, reading, singing, painting, and playing tennis on the courts at the 1200 SW tennis courts. 

Joanne was employed at the Washington Post building located in the center of the Arthur Capper community before moving to “I” Street in Southeast D.C., becaming a resident of the Arthur Capper Community. Both the Arthur Capper & Syphax Gardens communities in Ward 6 have always been her home. 

Her talent for communicating with people from all walks of life guided her to East Capitol Dwellings, where she volunteered for “Never Say Never Ministries,” an organization that empowers and motivates ex-offenders, the homeless, and those who battle drug addiction. Later she became an employee of DC Housing Authority, DCHA, where she worked for East Capitol Dwellings. The community fondly knew her as “Mama Jo.” 

In 2015, Joanne earned her Associate of Arts Degree from Trinity Washington University at THEARC and was the pride of her family. At the age of 59 years old, she graduated with her bachelors degree in general studies from Trinity Washington University (main campus) on May 18, 2018. 

Joanne was a champion supporter of the Ward 6 award-winning community arts organization Models Inc., which was founded by me (Iran). She was committed to supporting the program financially and donated her time and resources every chance she could to keep youth positively engaged and inspired. 

Joanne loved her four children, and all the Southwest community. She is survived by her daughters LaShawn “Shawn Shawn” Paylor, Sade Paylor, Colletta Paylor, and her only son Iran “Bang” Paylor.

The Southwest community lost a true LEGEND, but Heaven has gained an icon devoted to service – we will truly miss you Joanne. 

For donations, please send to 1001 4St. #222, SW DC 20024, attention “Paylor Family” + PayPal or Zelle: 202-292-9172.

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