Betty Carolyn Harding, 89, of Port Townsend passed away peacefully on June 21, 2021. She was a devoted wife, mother and grandmother, and a servant to her church and community.
Betty was born on March 25, 1932, in Vancouver, Washington, to Dr. Arthur K. Harris and Ruth L. Harris. She grew up in Camas, Washington, graduating from Camas High School in 1950. She was active in Girl Scouting growing up, and she was a good student throughout her school years. Her education continued at the University of Washington, where she graduated cum laude in 1954, with a BS in Nutrition. She interned and worked at Harborview Hospital in Seattle, and later at St. Peter’s Hospital in Olympia.
Betty married the love of her life, Roger Alan Harding, on Oct. 20, 1956. They met on a blind date while they were students at UW. Roger was a forester for the state of Washington. They raised their three children, Joan, Janice and Ronald in Olympia. After their children were grown, they spent the first few years of their retirement as Peace Corps volunteers in Senegal, West Africa. In 1988, they returned to the United States, settling in Port Townsend, to be near their first grandchild.
Betty and Roger were active in the Presbyterian Church, both at the United Churches in Olympia, and the First Presbyterian Church, in Port Townsend. In Olympia, Betty planned and cooked many large meals, serving up to 200 people at a time. In Port Townsend, she stitched banners and quilts with Prayers and Squares, and helped where she was needed.
Betty and Roger had a large garden and orchard and donated much of their produce each year to the local food bank.
The Harding family enjoyed hiking, camping and exploring in Washington, and on trips throughout the United States and Canada. In retirement, Roger and Betty traveled to Australia, New Zealand, Scandinavia and the UK.
Betty enjoyed quilting and was a member of Cabin Fever Quilters. She was also a member of the Admiralty Inlet chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. She enjoyed cooking and entertaining her family and friends. Bread baking was her specialty.
Betty is survived by her brother, Arthur K. Harris, Jr. of Mount Vernon, Wash.; her children, Joanie (Eric) Hendricks of Brinnon, Wash.; Janice Ranck (Brian) of Rio Rico, Arizona; and Ron Harding of Charleroi, Pennsylvania. Also, by her three grandchildren, Raymond Hendricks, Jasper Hendricks and Claire Leveck. Roger passed away previously on Aug. 14, 2019.
Betty and Roger watched the sun set behind Mount Townsend from their home for 26 years. They also enjoyed hiking up and taking in the view many, many times. They requested their ashes be scattered there. So, on July 3, 2021, their family along with Pastor Paul Heins of the Port Townsend First Presbyterian Church, hiked up the mountain through fields of alpine flowers and had a beautiful memorial service at the very spot where they enjoyed many picnics and a few summer snowball fights.