Jul. 2, 1919 Carthage Moore County North Carolina, USA
Feb. 15, 2009 Durham Durham County North Carolina, USA
Mrs. Worth was born to Alonzo Blue and Janie McNeill Blue. She had a happy childhood with her parents, four sisters and younger brother. After a year at Appalachian State Teacher's College, she entered Flora MacDonald College and graduated in 1940. She taught school for a year in Grifton, NC before returning to Carthage to teach. During World War II, there was a period of time when Mrs. Worth taught school, coached girls' field hockey and basketball, managed the cafeteria, and served as principal. She was a Girl Scout leader and was active in her church. Some of her scouts from this period kept in touch with each other and with Mrs. Worth for the rest of Mrs. Worth's life. In 1946, she married the Reverend Charles William Worth, who, prior to World War II, had been a missionary in China. Mr. Worth had four children from his marriage to Grace McAlpine, who had died in 1942. The two older sons, George and Bob, attended graduate school after World War II, and the older daughter, Anna, was in college at the time of the marriage. The youngest child, Betty, lived with Mr. and Mrs. Worth. The Worths moved to Aberdeen, North Carolina where two daughters, Lucy and Julia, were born while Mr. Worth was pastor of Bethesda Presbyterian Church. In 1954, Mr. Worth was called to the First Presbyterian Church of Whiteville. In 1956, Betty, then living in California, died of polio. Shortly afterwards, Mrs. Worth gave birth to a son, named for his father, and known as Charlie. Mrs. Worth was wife, mother, and homemaker. She again became active in Girl Scouting when her daughters were old enough to join, but most of her time outside the home was focused on church work. She was made a lifetime member of the Women of the Church (PCUSA) before her husband retired in 1967. Her last year in Whiteville, she returned to teaching at Edgewood Elementary School. After her husband's retirement, the family moved to Wilmington, and Mrs. Worth, who was twenty-one years younger than her husband, continued to teach, first at Ogden Elementary and then at Tileston and Gregory Schools. In 1969, the Worth's youngest child, Charlie, died quite suddenly of leukemia. After her husband's death in 1973, Mrs. Worth continued her education and earned a master's degree in counseling at East Carolina University. She worked as a school attendance counselor for New Hanover County Public Schools until her retirement in 1984. She was active in Delta Kappa Gamma teaching sorority until the last few years of her life and had served as president from 1978-1980. She frequently said that working with children was her vocation and she supported local organizations that had an emphasis on educational programs for children. Deriving great pleasure and satisfaction from her work in her church, Mrs. Worth served as Sunday school teacher, choir member, elder, trustee, growth chair, circle member, vacation bible school teacher, catechism teacher, and Interfaith Hospitality Network volunteer into her eighties. In addition to her work with children and in the church, Mrs. Worth was active in her community in other capacities. She was a founding board member of the Wilmington chapter of Habitat for Humanity. She received two Volunteer of the Year awards for her work at Cornelia Nixon Davis nursing home. She tutored elementary school children, and volunteered weekly at her church for fifteen years after her retirement. She was proud to have supported WHQR 91.3 FM for five years before it went on-air, as well as each year thereafter. Mrs. Worth was also a conservationist who loved working outdoors and cared deeply about coastal issues. She loved to drive to visit friends and family, and was quite put-out with the doctor who told her she must stop driving nearly three years ago. She was lucky to find Kay Lowell as a companion after she lost her license. Kay and later additional companions allowed Mrs. Worth to stay in her own home as she had planned, until she fell and broke her hip in June 2008. Following her hospitalization, Mrs. Worth moved to the skilled nursing pavilion at Croasdaile Village in Durham where she received excellent care from the staff and later, from the staff of Duke Hospice. Mrs. Worth is predeceased by her husband and her son, Charles William Worth, Jr.; four sisters Katherine Roper, Alice Pinkston, Grace Gavin, Helena Neill and one brother William Blue; stepdaughter, Elizabeth Worth; and two stepsons, George Clarkson Worth and Dr. Robert McAlpine Worth. Mrs. Worth is survived by her stepdaughter, Anna Worth, her daughters, Lucy Chadbourn Worth, and Julia Stickney Worth, and Julia's husband, R. Gregory Holley. Mrs. Worth was a devoted grandmother to Lucy and Julia's children, Elizabeth de Clare Stroscio, Charles Marshall Sidbury Stroscio of Durham, Jonathan Worth Holley, and Benjamin Worth Holley. Mrs. Worth is also survived by a great-granddaughter, Liliana Belle Stroscio of Durham, four step-grandchildren, four step-great-grandchildren, and nineteen nieces and nephews. Mrs. Worth died at Croasdaile after suffering from vascular dementia and Lewy Body Dementia for a number of years.