Cover photo for Joyce Riley Earl's Obituary
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1931 Joyce 2015

Joyce Riley Earl

September 27, 1931 — September 7, 2015

Joyce Raines Lansford Riley Earl, age 83,of Zapata, Texas, passed away Monday evening, September 7, 2015, in a Laredo hospital.

Funeral services will be held at 10:30 A.M., Friday, September 11, 2015, in the Lawson Funeral Home Chapel. Rev. Kevin Wilson officiating. Burial in the Meridian Cemetery.

Visitation will be from 1:00 to 3:00 P.M., Thursday, at the Lawson Funeral Home.

Joyce was born September 27, 1931, in Meridian. She was a daughter of the late John William "Bill" Raines and Mary Elizabeth "Susie" Smith Raines. Joyce was raised and educated in Meridian, graduating in 1949.. She was a graduate of Texas Wesleyan College in Ft. Worth. Joyce was a member of the Methodist Church.

She was the baby of the family and named by her three older brothers. She was a daddy's girl and he taught her cute songs to sing such as "I wish I was a fiddy in the sea". Joyce grew up to be admired for her intelligence and humor. She made friends everywhere she went. She practiced law until 3 years prior to her death. She was one of a very few who passed the state bar through apprenticeship and was the first female attorney in Lubbock County. Joyce will be missed and has left behind her husband, Rufus Earl of Turnersville, whom she met in college at Texas Wesleyan. She also leaves behind her adopted daughter, Katie Scarlet Woods of McAllen, the only child of her daughter, Elizabeth, who is deceased; number of nieces, nephews from her brothers such as Carol Ann.

Joyce was a member of the Eastern Star and Past Worthy Matron in St. Clair County, Alabama, and in Zapata, Texas.

Thoughts and memories may be shared with the family at

Arrangements by Lawson Funeral Home, Meridian, Texas, 254-435-2792.
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Joyce Riley Earl, please visit our flower store.


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