Elizabeth McCloskey (Betty) Houchins, 87, of Roanoke, VA passed away on the afternoon of December 30, 2010.  She died peacefully at home with her husband and children by her side.  After successfully beating cancer twice in her life, Betty had been dealing with another recurrence during the second half of 2010. Her death was preceded by those of her parents, Harry and Pearl (Hirst) McCloskey, and her beloved sisters Pearl and June.

Betty was born in Camden, NJ on December 3, 1923, the youngest of three charismatic and closely-bound sisters. Being a natural optimist and empathetic young woman, she went on to earn her nursing degree from the School of Nursing at Cooper Hospital in Philadelphia. 

Following graduation, Betty devoted her lifetime’s career to the nursing profession.  Initially with private practice physicians, then later as a public health practitioner for the health departments of Mercer County, WV and the City of Roanoke, VA.  Betty also served in the U.S. Army Cadet Nurse Corps during World War II.  Her military duty took her to Atlantic City, NJ and later to Utica, NY where she met her husband, William Meredith (Bill) Houchins.

Betty was a talented artist throughout her life and was an active member of Colonial Presbyterian Church in Roanoke.  She enjoyed many trips across the U.S. and around the world.  Her positive thinking and optimism were hallmark approaches to life that allowed Betty to navigate any situation or challenge in seemingly effortless fashion.  She is remembered fondly for a joy and passion for living, boundless creativity, and her delightfully contagious laughter.  An authentic spirit and the courage to dream are gifts that will live on through those who knew and loved her. 

Betty is survived by her devoted husband Bill of Roanoke, and their three children: June H. Hoffman of Roanoke and her husband Bill, William M. (Buster) Houchins of Marriottsville, MD and his wife Tracy, and Michael K. (Mike) Houchins of Roanoke and his wife Denise.  She also leaves behind five loving grandchildren: Ella Jean and Caroline Mae Houchins of Roanoke, Chelsi Ichrist of Marriottsville, MD, Tiffany Houchins of Baltimore, MD and her husband David, and Todd Houchins of New York, NY.