June 4, 2018. BLOWING ROCK, NC — To her delight, Betty Jean Ruppert Pitts entered her eternal home on Sunday, June 3, 2018 at her home. Born September 11, 1929 in Watauga County, she was a daughter of Toy and Gypsy Mary Jane Townsend Ruppert. Betty was a member of Middle Fork Baptist Church.
COVER IMAGE: Betty Pitts at one of her many Blowing Rock Historical Society appearances. Photographic image by David Rogers for Blowing Rock News
Betty served her family, friends, and her fellow man in many ways throughout her 88 years. Some of her accolades were serving the Town of Blowing Rock for 14 years as First Lady of Blowing Rock. She served as Chairman of the March of Dimes drive in Blowing Rock for many years. She was chosen as the President of the Hilltop Parent Association and was honored as Parent of the Year at Western Carolina Center. Betty spearheaded the drive to build the Chapel at Western Carolina Center and helped raise the funds to build the Chapel.
Betty was instrumental in organizing the Blowing Rock Rescue Squad where she served as an EMT and Chaplain until her retirement. Betty was the first President of the Blowing Rock Ruritan Club Auxiliary and served as President of the Ruritan Club many times and was awarded the Ruritan of the Year Award.
Betty established the Blowing Rock Hospitals Budget Box to raise funds to assist patient’s needs and continued to serve as President of Blowing Rock Hospital Auxiliary until its’ move to the new Foley Center. She continued to volunteer at the Foley Center until December when she became ill. Betty served on the Blowing Rock Hospital’s Board of Trustees. During her tenure on the Board, with the cooperation of Mr. Bob Bumbaugh and Dr. Charles Davant, Jr. organized the building of the Chapel at Blowing Rock Hospital. Betty volunteered many years with the Blowing Rock Hospital Fashion Show where she was later honored as Honorary Chair for her many years of work for the hospital.
After her husband’s death, she trained and served as a Watauga County Hospice Volunteer. Betty was a lifetime member of Blowing Rock Community Club where she served as President and chaired many fundraisers to benefit the community.
Betty was awarded Blowing Rock’s Woman of the Year and Blowing Rock’s Citizen of the Year. She served on the RHA Human Rights Board of Directors where she was a client Advocate.
Of all the recognition and awards given to Betty throughout the years, her most prized award was being named a Child of the King when she gave her heart to Jesus at 9 years of age. She spent her life sharing her faith. Since 1994 Betty was a columnist for The Blowing Rocket with her “Quiet Corner” column. She adored her friends Jerry Burns and Jeff Eason whom she is now sharing Heaven with.
She is survived by her sons, Hayden (Butch) Pitts, Jr. and wife Sharon, of Hickory, Norman Everett Pitts and wife, Shannon, of Lenoir, and Mikey Pitts of Ferguson; daughters, Betsy Payne of Boone, Lynn Lawrence and husband, J.B., of Blowing Rock, and Nancy Collins and husband, Tom, of Wilmington; granddaughters, Regenia Payne, Julie Pitts Harding, Marty Collins-Landau, Lisa Collins Stophel, Heather Pitts Donnelly, and Amber Miller; grandsons, Winston and Justin Lawrence, Brian Collins, and Chris and James Pitts; 21 great-grandchildren; and sister, Kate Robbins of Mebane. She is also survived by her special nephew, Terry Bradshaw and several more nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband, Clarence Hayden Pitts, Sr.; daughter, Rene Pitts; 3 brothers and 3 sisters; and son-in-law, David Lee Payne.
Funeral services for Betty R. Pitts will be conducted Wednesday afternoon, June 6, at 2 o’clock at Rumple Memorial Presbyterian Church in Blowing Rock, officiated by Dr. Marshall Edwards, Mel Graham, Rev. Shelby Stephens, Tucker Yates and Rev. Katheryn Beach. Graveside services will follow at Woodlawn Cemetery.
The family will receive friends Tuesday evening from 6 until 8 o’clock at the Rumple Memorial Presbyterian Church in Blowing Rock.
The family suggests memorials be made in their choice of the following: to Middle Fork Baptist Church, 268 Bishop Ridge, Blowing Rock; to Rumple Memorial Presbyterian Church, PO Box 393, Blowing Rock; to The Foley Center, PO Box 8, Blowing Rock, NC; or to Caldwell Hospice & Palliative Care, 902 Kirkwood St., NW, Lenoir, NC 28645.
Online condolences may be shared at www.austinandbarnesfuneralhome.com
Austin & Barnes Funeral Home and Crematory is serving the Pitts family.