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Obituary Betty Sue Wheat

Thursday, April 11, 2019

Betty Sue Wheat was born in Levelland, Texas, on September 15, 1936, to A.H. & Gertrude Bilbrey, and she left this life on April 4, 2019 in Waco, Texas. A graveside service and burial took place at Red Top Cemetery in Young County, Texas, on Tuesday, April 9th.

Betty lived in various South Plains communities as a young girl, but she spent most of those years in Sundown, Texas, where she finished High School in 1955. In July, 1954, she married Glenn Wheat who had moved to Sundown to work for Continental-Emsco Supply Co. The couple made their early homes in Sundown and Abilene, Texas, and in Farmington, New Mexico, before moving to Rapid City, South Dakota, where Glenn was stationed during his US Army service. Upon his discharge in 1959, the Wheats returned to Texas, with their newborn first child, and Glenn was sent to Andrews, Texas, to continue working for Continental-Emsco. Aside from a two-year assignment in Ohio, Betty and Glenn lived in Andrews until 1995, and both of their daughters were born while they were Andrews residents. Betty was baptized into Christ as a young girl and was active in Churches of Christ in every town where she lived.

Mrs. Wheat worked as a bank teller when she was first married, but her greatest occupation was as a mother to her three children. Later, she was an Avon Products distributor, and then she dabbled in retail business as owner and operator of The Windcurrent, a gift and bridal registry store in Andrews, from 1987 to 1990. A great deal of her energy throughout her life as a mother was expended in the loving care of Melinda, the youngest Wheat child, who was born with severe Cerebral Palsy.

Betty loved her life despite its hardships, and she loved serving others. She had a quick smile and a dry but strong sense of humor. Her greatest pleasures in life all had to do with family, and she was never happier than when surrounded by her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Gathering knowledge about her family’s roots was important to Betty, and she spent countless hours seeking, collating and recording genealogical information for both the Bilbrey and Wheat families. She was an excellent cook, and she was a professional quality seamstress who also enjoyed knitting, crochet and other forms of fabric craft. With her family, Betty enjoyed travelling, camping and exploring, and she was blessed to make two trips to Zimbabwe, Africa, to visit her missionary children and grandchildren and where she was accorded special honor as Ambuya (Grandmother) by the Shona people.

Betty was preceded in death by her parents, her three older brothers, and her husband, Glenn. She is survived by her son, Bobby Wheat and his wife, Nancy, of Waco, Texas, by her daughters, Janice Harissis and her husband, Nick, of Lewis-ville, Texas, and Melinda Wheat of Denton, Texas, by grandchildren, Nicole Harissis Himbury, Stefanie Wheat Johnson, Christopher Wheat, Ian Wheat, Allison Harissis and Ashley Harissis, and by ten great-grandchildren.

The family wishes to express thanks to the staff of Ridgecrest Retirement and Healthcare, to the Providence Congestive Heart Failure Clinic, and to Providence Hospice for the loving care and attention given to Betty during her time in Waco.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Lake Shore Drive Church of Christ, Zimbabwe Mission Fund, 2800 Lake Shore Drive, Waco, TX 76708, or to The March of Dimes at marchofdimes.org.

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