Following a two week stay at Cox hospital in Springfield, MO, Betty Carol Fleshman was released to go home with family on Thursday, February 11th, where she passed away peacefully in her sleep on Friday, February 12. She was 84 years old.
Betty was the oldest of four children born to Arthur & Marie (Williams) Cullor, of Lucerne, MO. She was born August 14, 1936. As a child, she attended Central City Grade School and had several life-long friends from those days, including Deleta Newell, Virginia Baumgardner, Shirley Harbert and Donna Harbert. Following graduating as salutatorian from Unionville High School in 1954, Betty attended the University of Missouri, Columbia. While a student at MU, she also worked for an engineer, was active in Rainbow, and still made it back home on weekends to be with family, as well as her boyfriend, James Eldon Fleshman of Unionville. Upon her college graduation three years later, James would become her husband of 52 years on June 23, 1957, and Unionville was home as they farmed and raised three boys together, Brent, Steve, and Rob.
Betty taught typing and short-hand at Mercer, West Putnam, Unionville and Seymour high schools. Her students loved her, and Betty loved them, always offering a smile and warm reception. Betty would later work briefly at Hawkeye State Bank in Centerville, IA, as well as Luscan Funeral Home in Unionville. Betty endured several health crises over the years, including surviving both thyroid cancer as well as breast cancer. Betty was a lover of fresh flowers and had a green thumb for growing things. She enjoyed reading, word games and travelling, as she and James visited many places together including New York City, Arizona, Gulf Shores, Mackinaw Island, Florida, Canada, Alaska and South Padre Island. The Grand Tetons and Rocky Mountains were also some of her favorite scenery to enjoy. Additionally, Betty was active in the women’s philanthropic group, PEO, and several church ministries over the years, including Lucerne Christian Church (where she trusted Jesus Christ as her Savior as a youth), Parkview Church of Christ, First Christian Church and Midway Baptist Church.
Of course, Betty’s affections were always towards her family, and she is survived by James Fleshman, their three children and spouses: Brent & Teresa of Verona, MO, Steve & Angie of Raymore, MO and Rob & Michelle of Deridder, LA. She always gave thanks to God for three sons in the ministry. She also had a special, life-long relationship with her three siblings, brother Jimmy Cullor & wife, Lana Naylor, TX; sisters Jeanne Cullor, Corpus Christi, TX; and Nancy Ewing & husband Keith, Robstown, TX. Additionally, she was blessed with 16 grandkids and 20 great-grandchildren, (and one more on the way). Throughout her years, she made her home an inviting place, where all felt welcomed and wanted; and where she spent much of the days in the kitchen cooking and baking for family & friends. Those closest to her would readily agree she made some of the best homemade brownies, cream potatoes and baked beans. All of Betty’s life was especially marked by kindness towards others, and she will be missed so very much by so very many.
Betty’s funeral service will be held at the Playle & Collins Family Funeral Home in Unionville, MO on Saturday, February 20th at 11:30am, with visitation one hour prior to her service. Interment will follow at the Unionville Cemetery and memorials, in lieu of flowers, are suggested to the Lucerne Christian Church or Life Issues (An addiction recovery ministry) and may be entrusted to the Playle & Collins Family Funeral Home, 709 S. 27th Street, Unionville, MO 63565.