Elizabeth "Bettie" Anna Foster, 74, of Flat Rock, N.C., passed away March 15, 2012, with her husband by her side at Mission Hospital in Asheville, N.C.
Born Oct. 18, 1937, in Weirton, W.Va., to Joseph and Elizabeth Koval,.
Bettie grew up in Fairport Harbor and graduated from Harding High School in 1955. After taking many years off to raise a family, she started college at age 42, and achieved her lifelong dream of becoming a registered nurse.
Following graduation, she worked in private practice in New Jersey and then as a hospice nurse in Texas. She retired as the patient care coordinator for Hospice of Tejas in Decatur, Texas.
A lifelong lover of music, she sang in church choirs in New Jersey and Texas, and was an active member of the choir at First Presbyterian Church in Hendersonville. She was elected and ordained as an elder at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Flower Mound, Texas.
Her favorite hobby was duplicate bridge, and she was a member of several clubs including most recently the Hendersonville Duplicate Bridge Club. Over many years of play, she amassed 1243 points and earned distinction as a Silver Life Master of the American Contract Bridge League.
For 30 years, she spent her summers at Upper Saranac Lake in the Adirondack Mountains of northern New York. She loved the area and her mountain home but never so much as when surrounded by family and her abundance of friends who were always welcomed with open arms. She was president of the Saranac Shores HOA and volunteered at the Island Chapel on Upper Saranac Lake as well as the U.S. Olympic
Skating Facility in Lake Placid, N.Y.
She loved to entertain, was an accomplished cook, and had a keen sense of humor. Whether they be with The Harrison Brook Rowdies in New Jersey or The Hood in Flat Rock, parties were numerous and never short on fabulous food or lacking in fun at the Foster house. If there was a party game invented, it made its way to one of Bettie's gatherings.
Furry (and not so furry) creatures of all kinds held a special place in her heart. She trained woodland animals to eat from her hand, raised an orphaned raccoon and swam with dolphins. Her home was never without a four footed friend, often several, all of whom she loved like children.
Above all, her proudest accomplishment was her family. A loving wife of 42 years with three children and five grandchildren, she showered her family with unabashed love and affection. Always giving, her infinite reservoir of love was also extended to her devoted sister, her nieces and nephews and the multitude of close friends that she cultivated throughout her life.
Bettie is survived by her husband, Edward Jay Foster; daughter, Kathleen (Brien) Hatfield of Mechanicsville, Md.; sons, Michael (Lynn) Murphy of Bridgewater, N.J. and Edward (Eliza) Foster Jr. of Greenville, S.C.; and five grandchildren, Samantha and Shannon Murphy and Ethan, Blake and Abbey Foster. She is also survived by her sister, Joann Valentine of Fairport Harbor; five nieces and nephews, and their children.
A Celebration of Life will be held 1 p.m. Monday, March 19, 2012, at First Presbyterian Church of Hendersonville, followed by refreshments and fellowship.
Memorial contributions may be made to the music program of First Presbyterian Church, 699 North Grove Street, Hendersonville, NC 28792 or Four Seasons Hospice, 571 South Allen Road, Flat Rock, NC 28731
An online register book is available for family and friends by visiting www.thosshepherd.com.
Thos. Shepherd & Son Funeral Directors and Cremation Memorial Center is in charge of arrangements.