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Obituary: Betty Terry ’54

Betty Davis Terry, 81, died Monday, Feb. 21, 2011, surrounded by her family at home in Beltsville, Md., after an eight-year illness.

Born in 1930, Mrs. Terry was the daughter of the late Wilson Davis and Grace Wilson Davis of Wilmington and Dover. She was a native of Cheswold, DE and a 1954 graduate of Antioch College in Ohio. She received a master’s degree in education from Wittenberg University in Ohio in 1962.

While teaching in Hawaii from 1962 to 1964, she met and married Raymond J. Terry, and moved to the Washington, D.C. area in 1964. She received a certification in special education from the University of Maryland in 1983. Mrs. Terry taught at Antioch Elementary School in Ohio for seven years; Burns Park Elementary School in Ann Arbor, Mich., for one year; University Elementary School in Honolulu, Hawaii, for two years; Thomas Stone Elementary School in Mt. Rainer, Md., for one year; Holly Park Elementary School Special Ed Program in College Park, Md., for one year; and at Glenarden Woods Elementary School in Glenarden, Md., for 12 years, before retiring in 1995.

She loved Hawaii and spent the last six years of her life in Honolulu with her husband and son before her deteriorating health forced her to return to Maryland. Mrs. Terry was a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, attending congregations in the Silver Spring, Md., Stake, and in the Honolulu, Hawaii, Stake. She taught Sunday School, and in the young women’s program and served as a leader of the women’s organization. She, her husband and her son, David, served as church missionaries for two years, as well as in other missionary capacities.

She was the co-founder of the website, www.mitsawokett.com, which is an exploration of her mixed-race roots. She was a member of the Lenni Lenape tribe of Cheswold. Mrs. Terry’s marriage in 1954 to Robert Parker ended in divorce.

She was a person possessed of a rare combination of compassion, intellect, honesty, inner and outer beauty, and loyalty. Mrs. Terry is survived by her husband of 47 years, Raymond J. Terry of Beltsville, Md.; five children, Elizabeth Terry and her husband Michael Stoler of Oakland, Calif., William Terry and his wife Laurel of Cedar Hills, Utah, Frances Meyerson and her husband George of Columbia, Md., and Ellen Holder and her husband Jess, and David Terry, all of Beltsville, Md.; an aunt, Mae Collins of Cheswold; a cousin, Allen Reed of Cheswold; and eight grandchildren, Zachary, Aaron and Seth Terry of Cedar Hills, Utah; Thomas and Meghan Phillips of Columbia, Md.; and Lauren, Abigail and Quinn Reichard of Beltsville, Md. A memorial website has been created by her children at http://rememberingbettyterry.blogspot.com.