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Betty Joyce (Hillis) Bedingfield, 86
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Piedmont resident Betty Joyce (Hillis) Bedingfield, 86, died at home Friday, Sept. 6, after an extended illness.

She was born to Savada (Hyatt) Hillis and Arcie Wilson Hillis on Dec. 18, 1932, in Hazel Green, Montgomery County, Ala., to a family of sharecroppers. Joyce graduated from Central High School in McMinnville in 1950 and earned her registered nurse designation from Baptist College in Nashville in 1953. She worked as an RN until her daughters were born, then became a full-time mother and homemaker. She married John R. Bedingfield Jr., in Charleston, S.C., in 1963.  

Joyce was fiercely independent and did not let an illness early in life stop her from reaching her goals. She overcame many obstacles and persevered in a time that was not so easy for women.  While she loved working in the operating room and loved her family, she also enjoyed painting, quilting, drawing, writing poems, going to Deadwood with friends and family, volunteering as a poll worker in Piedmont, S.D., playing Bridge with the Ruffs and Sluffs group, and observing the abundant wildlife from her sun porch in the Black Hills. 

Joyce is survived by her husband of 56 years John R. Bedingfield Jr., MD, of Piedmont, brother John T. Hillis of McMinnville, daughters Jennifer (David) Utter of Piedmont, S.D., Jessica (Ted) Stefaniak of Green Bay, Wis., and Jacqueline (Chris) Pinard, La Livinière, France; and grandchildren, Johnathon Utter of Piedmont, and Sarah Stefaniak and Hannah Stefaniak of Green Bay. 

Memorial services will be held at 2 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 11, at Foothills Community Baptist Church in Piedmont with pastor Robert Hower officiating. Inurnment will be held at a later date at Black Hills National Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to the Joyce Bedingfield Memorial Nursing Scholarship Fund, c/o Wells Fargo Bank, 825 Saint Joseph Street, Rapid City, S.D., 57701. Online condolences may be sent to

Southern Standard

(McMinnville, Tenn.) Sept. 11, 2019