My beloved mother, Elizabeth (Betty) Eileen Richards, 93, passed away on December 2, 2020, in Layton, Utah. She was born in Detroit, Michigan on May 12, 1927, to Eileen Hurley and Roland Davis. She was the oldest with two younger sisters and a brother. She was raised in Fraser Michigan.
When she was a young girl her Mom and Dad bought a piano for her and her sisters and music became a lifelong passion. Betty played piano well into her 80’s. She attended Eastern Michigan majoring in music. She used to go to Interlochen Center for the Arts (a music school) with her friends for a week every summer. I remember this because my sister and I would stay home with just Dad. Somehow we survived.
She and her sisters also played softball together for their high school and the Chrysler Corporation. She played 2nd base and her sisters played catcher and outfield. That was such an unusual sport for girls in the 40’s but Mom loved it.
On June 20, 1953 Betty married Charles Richards. They were married for 56 years until Charles passed away May 22, 2010. Betty and Chuck had two kids, Charles Jr. and Barbara. Barb died of cancer at age 30. Betty took care of her at home and deeply grieved the loss of her youngest child. Betty would cry every time you mention Barb till the day Betty passed. They are together now and probably still hugging. Which we can all appreciate in this age of covid-19.
While living in Michigan Mom and Dad played on a wonderful golf league consisting of their good friends and after every weekly round they would meet for dinner at the local hot spot. This same group would travel during the winter to North Carolina or Florida for a winter golf trip.
Mom had a lot of friends and loved them all. She started a walking group in Jackson Michigan. Everyone met at her house at 8:00 AM sharp and they walked 3 miles in 40 minutes (a very fast pace). That same group walked for almost 20 years. That wasn’t it, she continued walking everyday well into her 80’s. She also loved golf, sewing, knitting, singing in church choir, bowling and playing cards.
Betty and Chuck raised their family in Jackson Michigan until a few years after Barb passed away when they moved to Utah to be near Chuck, Debi and the two grandkids Keith and Scott. Her greatest goal in life was to take care of her kids and her grandkids. Which she did fabulously. Mom loved to knit, needlepoint and sew. She made wonderful afghans and sweaters for the grandkids. She also sewed clothes for me (Chuck) when I was a teenager. That was a bit embarrassing.
While living in Utah she would take care of the grandkids during the spring, summer and fall and loved to take them golfing, shopping for new school clothes and playing games.
In the winter they would drive down to Tucson Arizona to get away from the Utah winter. They had a wonderful apartment with a great group of snowbird friends. They played cards, golfed, walked and had parties. She even got a hole in one at a course near Tucson AZ.
My Mom’s favorite pastime by far was watching PGA golf on TV. She knew everything about every golfer on the tour, read all their books. She has been watching golf since the 60’s.
When Keith and Scott graduated from high school they moved to Tucson fulltime.
After Dad passed Mom enjoyed coming up to Park City with friends for the summer.
Another summer after Dad passed Mom went on a road trip with her friend Ann Bayes back to Michigan. They had many stops along the way seeing friends, family and sightseeing. They had a wonderful time.
Betty is survived by her son Chuck and Debi Richards of Farmington, Utah; grandchildren, Keith (Jaya) Richards of Toronto, Canada and Scott (Jessika) Richards, of San Diego California; 3 great grandsons, Akash, Ishaan and Bodhi; and a fourth great grandson on the way due April 23. Betty was preceded in death by her husband Chuck, daughter Barb, parents, sisters Peggy, Eileen and her brother Ron.
Betty’s family would like to thank Inspiration Hospice and Fairfield Village for their care of Betty.
Donations can be made to the Immanuel Presbyterian Church Choir, 9252 E 22nd St., Tucson Az. 85710 (520) 296-2253. Mom selected her church based on the quality of the choir and she loved this choir director.