Joel Poke, Jr. was born August 29, 1949, to Floretta Cotton and Joel Poke, Sr., in Kansas City, Kansas. He was the second of nine children his parents, two brothers, Cpl. Donald Maurice Poke; John Richard Poke; two sisters, Linnetta Poke; and Flora Poke Williams; son, Jamhere Dean; and stepson, Demetrius Allen; preceded him in death.
Joel attended the Kansas City, Kansas Public school system graduating from Sumner High School.
He played high school football and lauds as an incredible linebacker player. When tackled by Joe, you knew it! He played the trumpet during high school and recently resumed playing. Upon graduation, he enlisted into the United States Navy on June 28, 1968. He enjoyed his time on the sea, and those excursions carried his team across the equator, which earned those shipmen the Shellback honor.
Joe united in marriage to Patricia Wyatt and was blessed to expand his family with Sharonda Poke Jackson, Karena Poke, and Joel Poke III. After that dissolution, he married Trunisa Byers Allen, in which he increased his family to include Demetrius and Lyndsey Allen.
Joe was baptized at an early age at the King Solomon Baptist Church in Kansas City, Kansas, under the leadership of the late Pastor S.J. Royal. After which, he united with the Evangelistic Center Church of God in Christ under the leadership of Pastor W.C. "Dad" Vaughn, Jr. His ministry involved working with those recovering from substance abuse addiction and males residing in group homes.
He is the author of "Jay's Song," a production depicting the life struggles of an inner-city young black male. Based on the life of his nephew Jorrard Maurice Davis - directed by Deborah Vaughn Daniels and performed at Quindaro Elementary School.
His passion was motorcycles, where he was a member of the Crusaders Motorcycle Club in Kansas City, Kansas, and professionally driving over the road trucks for Phillips 66 and Yellow Freight. He served as Union Steward at Yellow Freight. Joe was a driver for the Wyandotte County Foster Grandparent program. He was riddled with stories from the grandparents when he dropped them off and picked them up from their respective school sites.
Joe loved laughing, being with his family, having fun with friends, and cooking. Family and friends will remember his signature chicken wings, barbeque ribs, and pinto beans.
Joe touched many people's lives with his laugh, generosity, and trademark sense of humor. He loved his family, and they truly adored him.
He leaves to celebrate his homegoing his loving and devoted wife of 21 years, Trunisa Poke; two daughters, Sharonda Jackson; Karena Poke of Houston, Texas; one step-daughter, Lyndsey Allen of Kansas City, Kansas; one son, Joel Poke, III of Houston, of Texas; three sisters, Linnie M. Poke of Kansas City, Kansas; Marionna C. Poke-Stewart of Raleigh, North Carolina; Glenda Y. Jones (Clifton) of Lenexa, Kansas; one brother, Bryan K. Poke of Kansas City, Kansas; mother-in-law Mrs. Byers; sister-in-law Twila (Kenneth) Betts; brothers-in-law, Sperlynn (Dawn) Byers all of Kansas City, Kansas; Melvin Williams of Houston, Texas; maternal aunt, Sylvia Harris (Herbert) of Kansas City Kansas; eight grandchildren; 3 great-grandchildren; and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, extended family, and friends.
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