Funeral services for Betty Louise Southards, 85, Sycamore, Missouri, will be held at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, March 10, 2018 at Needmore Church of God, under the direction of Robertson-Drago Funeral Home.
Mrs. Southards passed to her eternal reward on March 5, 2018. She was born on April 13, 1932, the youngest child of Norton and Christena Pease. Raised during the depression on their family farm near Dora, Missouri, Louise learned the value of hard work, resourcefulness and good stewardship from a young age. Louise loved learning and was an excellent student, which led to her graduating as the valedictorian of her class in 1949. She carried this determination to do her best, whatever the circumstances, throughout her lifetime. After high school, Louise married James Southards, who was the love of her life. Together they cherished two children, Eddie and Brenda. When Louise was 23 years old she became a Christian. She grew in her faith at the Rock Hill Church of God, St. Louis, Missouri and used her talents to faithfully serve the church in many different ways over the years. Louise worked 25 years at the Meramec Community College bookstore, ending her career as the bookstore manager. Louise and James retired to the Southards family homestead at Sycamore, Missouri. She designed their home for family gatherings, welcoming her children and grandchildren with open arms. She expressed love for her family and others in many ways, including the wonderful meals she made, the generous gifts she provided and other daily blessings that she gave with joy. In this way, her life reflected deep faith and embodied God’s tenderhearted love. During their retirement, Louise and James were active in the Needmore Church of God at Dora, Missouri. There they worked together for nearly 30 years in many different ways alongside their friends and neighbors to help share the gospel with the community. She was also a member of the Sweeton Pond Cemetery Board.
Louise is survived by one son, Eddie Southards and wife, Ruth; one daughter, Brenda Proebsting and husband, Fred; five adored grandsons, Dr. Eric Proebsting and wife, Kelly, Tim Southards and wife, Shari, Todd Proebsting and wife, Sarah, Reverend Steve Southards and wife, Erin and Ben Southards; she also shared the joy of nine great-grandchildren. She will be greatly missed by all who knew her.
She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband of 66 years, as well as her siblings, Joyce Bell, Dallas Pease and Doris Stout.
Visitation will be held from 4:30 until 7:30 p.m., Friday, at Robertson-Drago Funeral Home. Burial will be in the Ball Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to Needmore Church of God or Ball Cemetery and may be left at Robertson-Drago Funeral Home. Online condolences may be expressed at www.robertsondrago.com.