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Marshall - Betty Ward Bradley, 83, passed from this life into life eternal on Sunday morning, November 11, 2012. She was on her way to Oak Hill Baptist Church at the time of her passing.
Even though Betty suffered from the loss of her husband and a debilitating illness, she courageously fought to continue her involvement with family, friends and community.
Her childhood was blessed by the kindness and attention of her mother and father and six older brothers and sisters. She met and married WWII veteran Iverson Bradley in the late 1940s. She and "Bradley" made their home in Marshall. As their only child matured, Betty became a teacher's assistant where her natural connection with children flourished. She soon enrolled at Mars Hill College where she was a classmate of her son and future daughter-in-law. Having received her BA in Education, Betty had the honor and pleasure of teaching many local children through the 1970's and into the late 1980's. She had the delight to be the after school companion of her only grandchild, spending many late afternoons filled with soap opera, naps and squirt cheese. She instilled a love and thirst for learning in those she touched. She had a sense of humor and taught others to develop the same.
Betty was preceded in death by her parents, John and Roberta Fortner Ward, by her six brothers and sisters, by her special niece, Betty Lou Bradley and by her beloved husband "Bradley" Bradley.
She leaves behind Arvel Bradley, Retha Ward, and a number of friends and caretakers who were a very present help in time of trouble. Betty will be missed by her son, Michael and daughter-in-law, Verna; by her granddaughter, Sarah and her husband, Eli Whalen; and by her great-granddaughter, Clare Emeline Whalen.
Funeral services will be held at 12 noon, Wednesday, November 14, 2012 in the chapel of Madison Funeral Home with Reverend Jim Crayton officiating. Burial will follow in the Rector's Chapel Cemetery.
The family will receive friends 10:30 a.m. - 12 noon Wednesday prior to the service.
Betty lived her life in the open but her philanthropy was given quietly and kept many lights glowing through ways unbeknownst to those who had their shadows dispelled. Her memory would be honored by donations in her name to Oak Hill Baptist Church, P.O. Box 352, Marshall, NC 28753 to continue that work. www.MadisonFH.com
Published in the Asheville Citizen-Times on Nov. 13, 2012