Josephine Edwards Bullard
March 20, 1941 – August 29, 2019
Josephine Stapley Edwards Bullard died peacefully in the early afternoon of August 29, 2019. She is survived by her husband of 55 years, Roger Clifton Bullard, who was at her side at the time of death. Her mortal life was drawn from her by the remorseless grip of advancing memory and cognitive loss. That life was a testimony to motherhood. Joso gave life to her six children, all of whom survive her and surrounded her during her final days: her daughters, Stapley Bullard Russell and Josephine Bullard Glenn, and her sons, Hamilton Wallace, Gray Tasman, Charles Page and John Wilder. She is survived also by her five grandchildren: Charles, William and Matthew Russell, and Winslow and Taggart Bullard.
Her Australian father, Stapley Edwards, and American mother, Josephine Taggart Hudson, met through their shipboard romance en route to England in 1936. Josephine Stapley Edwards was born March 20, 1941, in Sydney, NSW. In life she was devoted to her many Australian cousins, whom she both visited and received at home on numerous family travels. She was a magnet for friends, who were attracted by her wit, intellect, humor and spontaneity. She once generously observed: “Roger, all of our friends are those you have brought to us,” to which Roger responded: “Not true, you are the reason they keep coming back.”
Joso was an addictive reader. She read everything, had several books going at any time. As she became interested in an author, she acquired their entire works. Early every morning she would be found in her library of 12,000 volumes transcribing and commenting on the memorable lines read the previous day. Those many handwritten “books on books” grew to fill a three-foot shelf next to her desk.
From her childhood, she loved to write and tell stories. Her letters were a treasure, full of entertainment and insight. She wrote by hand or Royal typewriter, never on a computer. Joso was an avid writer and note-taker until overcome by the inexorable progress of dementia. She was an intense fan of movies, especially Westerns, of which she maintained an extensive collection. The lovely notes of her piano filled the house for an hour every morning until her artistic skill, her love of literature and movies was stolen by the cruel loss of cognition.
Following the early death of her father in 1944, Joso returned to Watertown, NY, the maternal home of her widowed mother. Upon her mother’s second marriage to Charles Keating Rice, she moved with her family to Washington, DC, where she attended National Cathedral School. She graduated from Emma Willard School in 1959 and attended George Washington University, St. Lawrence University and Hood College. She and her husband, Roger, were married in Watertown, NY, on July 11, 1964. After a year in New York City, they moved to Greenwich, CT, where they lived for 54 years.
Joso was predeceased by her elder brother, Byron Taggart Edwards, in 2017, and is survived by her younger half-brother, Marcus Keating Rice, MD, of Norfolk, Virginia, and Henderson Harbor, NY. Her remains are to be interred in the Taggart family plot at Brookside Cemetery, Watertown, NY. A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m., Saturday, September 7th, at St. Barnabas Church, 954 Lake Avenue, Greenwich, CT. She would be deeply pleased for contributions made in her memory to the Greenwich Library, 101 West Putnam Avenue, Greenwich, CT, 06830.
- Funeral Service Saturday, September 7, 2019