Bette Pennington, 85, slipped into the presence of Jesus and loving family on Jan. 23, 2018. Bette was born July 29, 1932, near Celeste, Texas, in Hunt County to Sidney Jackson Welborn and Oneta Faye Welborn. She grew up in Greenville, Texas, and at the age of 10 trusted in Jesus as her savior at Lamar Baptist Church.
As a young girl, Bette showed talent as a singer, and through the generosity of friends began voice lessons during World War II. In high school she worked at Barlow's Florist and represented them in Greenville's Centennial celebration and parade. Later as a telephone operator, she fell in love with a naval veteran named Lee Pennington, whom she knew in high school. On Nov. 18, 1953, Bette and Lee were married in her longtime church home, First Baptist Church of Greenville.
In the years to come as a teacher and coach's wife, she would sing solos often at First Baptist and for many weddings and funerals. She loved to use her gift of music to worship and serve the Lord. She loved going to the games and being involved with the many activities of being the wife of a public school administrator.
Bette's delight and joy was her family. She was a loving mother. She would often say to family that the Lord is the one who provides and gets us through each day. He never fails us.
After the passing of her husband, Lee, in 1986, Bette continued to live in Greenville and enjoyed the companionship of her childhood friend, Bryant Daly, for many years who had also lost his spouse.
Bette loved her 13 grandchildren and daughter-in-law Robin very much. She delighted in all their accomplishments. She also loved her son, Paul, with a steadfast and unbending love. Bette did not fear death and spoke often about being ready to see Jesus face to face.
That homecoming will be celebrated on Thursday, Jan. 25, at First Baptist Church, Greenville chapel, at 10:30 a.m. followed by a brief graveside service at Memoryland Memorial Park in Greenville. Dr. D.D. Sumrall Jr. will officiate. Coker-Mathews Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.
Bette is survived by her son, Paul and wife Robin Pennington of Driftwood, Texas, and their six children; two sons-in law; and 13 grandchildren. Bette is also survived by her brother, Charles Truett Welborn and wife Linda, along with their children, Gary Welborn and Julie Newman.
Bette was preceded in death by her grandson, Benjamin Golic; husband Lee Pennington; father Sidney Welborn and mother Oneta Welborn.
Published on January 23, 2018