Betty C. Francis

Published 10:54 am Thursday, February 20, 2020

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MURFREESBORO, NC – Betty Jean Cobb Francis, age 88, passed away in the early morning hours on Wednesday, February 19, 2020 at the Rich Square Health Care Center of Rich Square, NC. God called a very special lady home. Betty was loved and respected by so many people for her genuine love of God, of others, her community, and Gods four-legged creatures.

A native of Halifax County, Betty was born on July 10, 1931 to Jesse Thomas Cobb, Sr. and Thelma Elizabeth Lowe Cobb in Scotland Neck, NC. After graduating salutatorian of her high school class, Betty began working at the local newspaper office in Scotland Neck. In the summer of 1951, she met her future husband Lokie at the scout pond in Scotland Neck. It was love at first sight, and they were married January 19, 1952, and to this marriage one child was born in 1958.

They made their permanent home in Murfreesboro where they enjoyed being part of the local community where Betty always felt it was important to be involved in volunteering in the community and serving others. She worked with the Chamber of Commerce with the annual Watermelon Festival and Candlelight Tour. Relay for Life was always very close to her heart and she was involved strongly as long as her health permitted along with being a member of the local cancer support group. Having served as a hospice volunteer for over 25 years, Betty felt that this was truly her calling. She always said, “everybody needs somebody to listen to them”. She received numerous community awards to include the good neighbor citation and the Governor’s Award for outstanding volunteer services. She was proud of Chowan College and took various courses to include sign language and religion.

Betty worked at the local bank and enjoyed greeting her customers with a smile and was always interested in how their day was going. Later, Betty started working with Lokie in their heating/air-conditioning and appliance business where again she connected with the public, which made her so happy. She could light up a room with her smile and always spoke an encouraging word to everyone. Her humility made others feel that she was approachable and eager to listen.

Her ultimate joy, “hearing birds sing and watching them sit on tree branches awaiting for the next opportunity, “loving all the seasons, especially Spring, when the flowers started blooming.” Betty and Lokie enjoyed camping and motorcycling and she was always willing to be beside him on any of his chosen adventures. She adored the senior center and the bus trips. She felt it very important to support the local and national SPCA and took in 3 stray cats to love and provide as her own as well as numerous dogs. She and Pat picked up several stray dogs on the side of the road and delivered them to rescues but not before feeding them a MacDonald’s hamburger.

Betty was a lifetime member of Meherrin Baptist Church and often reflected on her joy of helping with Vacation Bible School and teaching a children’s bible class. She will truly be missed; she was a very special lady in all our hearts, teaching family the importance of friends and people. She stood beside her husband through life’s ups and downs.

She loved God, read his word, and lived his word. Her kindness and gentleness will be sorely missed. As her favorite bible verse says; “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

God we thank you for giving her to us for 88 years, now wrap your loving arms around her tired body and comfort her until we see her again in Glory.

Besides her parents, she was preceded in death by sisters, Doris Cobb Lee, and Janice Faye Cobb Hills, and brothers, Robert Lowe Cobb, and Jesse Earnhardt Cobb.

Betty is survived by her devoted husband, Lokie; her daughter, Patricia Francis Thornton and husband Billy of Virginia Beach, VA; a brother, Jesse Thomas Cobb Jr. and wife Alberta of Rocky Mount, NC; and her special grand dog, Boone Thornton.

The family will receive friends on Friday evening, February 21, 2020, from 6:00 pm until 7:30 pm at Garrett-Sykes Memorial Chapel, Murfreesboro, NC.

A celebration of life funeral service will be held on Saturday, February 22, 2020, at 2:00 pm at the Meherrin Baptist Church, Murfreesboro, NC, with Rev. John Porter, officiating. Burial will follow in the church cemetery.

Flowers are welcome or memorial contributions may be made directly to PAWS of Hertford County, PO Box 153, Murfreesboro, NC 27855 or by visiting, search fund: type, Betty Francis.

Garrett-Sykes Memorial Chapel – Murfreesboro Chapel is handling the arrangements for the Francis family and online condolences can be directed to the family by visiting