Services for Betty Anderson Sewell, 95, of Tyler, will be held on Monday, June 2, 2014, at 1:30 p.m. at Stewart Family Funeral Home with Jay Lockhart officiating.
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Burial will follow in Cathedral in The Pines in Tyler under the direction of Stewart Family Funeral Home.
Mrs. Sewell passed away Thursday, May 29, 2014, at Tyler.
She was born Oct. 4, 1918, in Chippewa Falls, Wis., to George Henry Anderson and Bessie Belle Barrows Anderson.
She was raised in the Presbyterian Church and was very active in church and Sunday school as well as all the activities afforded her in the small, sleepy town of Chippewa Falls at that time. She especially loved to dance and was cast in many school plays throughout these years. She was actually a very popular "independent minded" young lady even though she always jokingly considered herself the often misunderstood "middle child," nestled in between her older sister, Virginia, and the youngest sister, Harriet.
After graduating from high school, Betty followed her first passion in her early years and attended the prestigious Kahler Nursing School in Rochester, Minn. After five years, she joined her sister Virginia and became a registered nurse. Betty went on to work at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester for a number of years before she met the love of her life, Lawson "Luke" Sewell.
It was while visiting her sister Virginia, "all the way down in Mexia, Texas," that she reluctantly went on a blind date set up by her sister Virginia. That is when she met Luke, with whom she would eventually agree to elope after a two-year, long-distance relationship. He proposed to Betty in a long-distance telephone call. In 1943, Betty took a long train ride from Texas to Baltimore, Md., where in a matter of three to four days they somewhat "hurriedly" married before he was shipped out on the USS Hornet. It would be almost two years before she would set eyes on her beloved husband again.
After the war, he went to work for Humble Oil & Refining Co. in Tyler. They were married more than 50 years. During these 50 years, the family had the opportunity to see much of the United States with Luke's job. Betty lived a full life with many job-related relocations over the years, including Arcadia, Calif., New Orleans, La., and Pearlington, Miss. However, she raised her two children, Mike and Ann, for the most part in Midland, from 1958 until their last job relocation took them to Houston in 1968. Finally, they came "home" to Tyler for their retirement in 1974 to be close to their children, grandchildren and wonderful friends.
In Betty's lifetime, her No. 1 passion was always her beloved family, Lawson, Mike and Ann. She doted on their every wish and always strove to make sure they had "fun" first, but never gave up on encouraging them each to excel at sports and "do the best they could"( jokingly, of course) at their school work. And then there was her lifelong passion of her love of animals, her pets in particular, from Gal and Nikki to Sassy and Maggie. They were her four additional children she and Lawson loved dearly over the years.
It was later in life when Betty really embraced her third passion, that of oil painting. She not only embraced this passion; she went on to create an extensive art gallery of beautiful oil paintings, which eventually were spectacularly each custom-framed and hung all over her home for everyone to enjoy and admire for all the years to come.
Betty was preceded in death by her husband, Lawson Sewell; sister, Virginia Easterling; and brother, Joe Anderson.
She is survived by her loving family including daughter, Ann Blackwell; son, Mike Sewell; sister, Harriet Bailey, of Dallas; three grandchildren, Jennifer Blackwell, of Houston, Luke Blackwell and wife Ashley, of Lindale, Matt Blackwell and wife Sarah, of Galveston; and one beloved great-granddaughter, Addyson Grace Blackwell, of Lindale. In her final years, she surrounded herself with Addyson's pictures in her home right next to where she sat, adoring each picture for hours at a time.
Pallbearers will be Matt Blackwell, Luke Blackwell, Derek Martin, Jed Zagst, Daniel Romo and Heath Campbell.
Honorary pallbearers will be Tom Bailey, Gary Billups, Bill Easterling, Jim Hubley, and Vaughn Powell.
Visitation is scheduled from 1 to 3 p.m. Sunday, June 1, 2014. at Stewart Family Funeral Home, 7525 Old Jacksonville Highway, in Tyler.
If desired, memorials may be made to Pets Fur People, 1823 County Road 386, Tyler, 75708, or any other non-kill animal shelter; the Whitehouse Church of Christ, P.O. Box 183, Whitehouse, 75791; or any other
Stewart Family Funeral Home
7525 Old Jacksonville Highway
Tyler, TX 75703
Published in Tyler Morning Telegraph on June 1, 2014