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Elizabeth Armistead Booker Avis

Elizabeth Armistead Booker Avis (Betsy), age 83, born Aug. 25, 1929 in Halifax County passed away at her home on Lake Gaston, N.C. Jan. 28, 2013.  

She is survived by her husband of 59 years, Phillip Lambert Avis.

Betsy attended the Wright Oral School for the Deaf in New York City for 15 years from the age of 3 to 18. She was profoundly deaf and had to learn to speak and read lips.

She later received an associate degree from Ambler School of Horticulture for Women in 1950 and also received a B.A. in business in 1954 from Lynchburg College. 

She was employed initially by NASA as a thesis report writer and was later employed by Colonial Williamsburg Foundation as a horticulturalist where she received the Order of the Pineapple for exceptional sense of hospitality and courtesy. 

In addition to a lifelong interest in horticulture, Betsy loved to travel. With her husband, there were several trips to Europe and across the United States. She was even brave enough to let her husband fly her to destinations in his 1952 airplane. They went to New York City for plays and to Hawaii, Alaska, Canada, Mardi Grad, Epcot, Florida and many camping trips. 

She was a past member of the Lake Gaston Ladies Club and expert duplicate bridge player, and she was a member of the Littleton AARP.

Her mother and father, Elizabeth Hodges Gregory and Hunter Russell Booker Jr., and her son, Hunter Russell Avis, predeceased her. 

Surviving in addition to her husband are one son, Totten Lambert Avis (Marilyn); two daughters, Elizabeth Leigh Avis Pioletti (John) and Virginia Lynne Avis Williams; six grandchildren, Zachariah Ashton Adams, Lauren Avis Halpin, Christian Hope Avis, Phillip Lee Avis, Justin Michael Pioletti and Madeleine Grace Williams; two great-grandchildren, Ashton Collier Adams and Lillian Harris; and two step-brothers, Richard Gregory and William Gregory.

A memorial service at Hockaday Funeral and Cremation Service in Roanoke Rapids will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9, 2013.

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