Nature 46


Betty Jean Hicks West

July 11, 1928 ~ May 14, 2019 (age 90)


Mrs. Betty Jean Hicks West, age 90, of Lanett, AL passed away on Tuesday, May 14th, 2019 at Valley Park Manor in Valley, AL. She was born on July 11th, 1928 in Randolph County, AL.

Mrs. West is survived by her four children, Zane (Lisa) West, April West (Patrick) McGinn, Ashley (Angie) West, and Myron (Luann) West; her seven grandchildren, Dr. Stephen Cheek, Noah West, Patrick McGinn, Jr., Jonathan McGinn, Celeste Tingle, Kelsey (Jacob) Bandy, and Donovan West; her great-great grandchild, Adson Bell.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Albert and Lois Hicks, her husband, Wayne L. West; her sister, Carol Snider.    

In her early years, Betty Jean was a tomboy who wore coveralls, climbed trees, hiked in the woods, and raised chickens.  She would travel with her mother (Lois Hicks) to the "old house" in Randolph County, Alabama and stay a few days with other relatives.  She would sit in a rocking chair listening to them tell their stories, and laugh until tears ran down her face.  Betty Jean loved to read adventure books and she was a talented illustrator.  She would often draw and color her own illustrations in the margins and blank pages of her books that brought these stories to life.   Betty Jean preferred to stay close to home and spend time watching and learning from both of her parents.

Betty Jean graduated from Valley High School in 1946.  Later that same year, Betty Jean started work at the Fairfax Mill where she sewed lid covers that were sold in the Mill Store.  She would work for 9 months, then get laid off every summer and drew unemployment.

Later, she attended a trade school on Peachtree Street in Atlanta and learned dictation, speed writing, and other various secretarial duties.   She lived with Jim and Carol Snider in Millstead, GA while attending school in Atlanta.  She worked for a time at T.J. Beall in West Point and typed and took dictation.  Later, she worked as a secretary in the Fairfax Mill offices.

In 1959 Betty Jean married Wayne West and moved to Lanet.  She transferred her membership letter from the Fairfax Methodist Church to the Lanett First United Methodist Church.  She left the Fairfax Mill for the last time in August 1961, one month before Zane was born.  Betty Jean was a dedicated homemaker who helped her husband, Wayne, raise four children.  She liked to sew in her spare time and enjoyed making her own clothes and hats.   She was an active church member and kept the attendance roll in her Sunday School class for many years.


     A memorial service will be held on Saturday, May 18th, 2019 at 12:00 Noon (EST) at the Lanett First United Methodist Church. The Reverend Donnie Erwin-Brown will officiate. The family will receive friends Saturday morning from 11:00 AM (EST) until the service hour at the church.



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