Please note that all services were conducted by the Carson-Speaks funeral home.
Betty Louise Constant, 96, passed away on May 14, 2020.
Betty was born at home in La Tour, MO on February 3, 1924, the eldest child of Frances and Loyd Ervin. As a young girl, she delighted in riding horses, roller skating, and dancing, but at the age of 15 she became stricken with polio, the only person in her county to have contracted the illness. She was hospitalized and recovered as a paraplegic. However, to call Betty a “polio victim” would not define her. Betty persevered using crutches and braces until finding the convenience of a wheelchair in 1976 while caring for her husband.
In her early twenties, she worked at a tie factory in Pleasant Hill but due to the times and lack of handicap accessibilities she was forced to resign during inclement weather. She then went on to become a nanny for other working women. One day she answered a wrong-number phone call, to find her “Mr. Right,” a WWI Army veteran and local pharmacist named Lucian Lee Constant, Jr. They continued to talk, and they fell in love. As Lucian would say, he found his “princess” and they wed in 1948. To this union were born a son and a daughter.
Betty was a domestic engineer and smart businesswoman. She raised her children, kept house, and was also involved with rental properties and financing. Growing up in the Great Depression era, she was taught early on to never waste, and to always be frugal. She knew the value of a dollar and could stretch it by getting creative. She loved gardening and sewing, and she made quilts and clothes for Lucian and her children. She was a self-proclaimed “country girl” who loved being outdoors, including fishing. She loved watching the butterflies, birds, and blooming flowers. She was always up for a game of Scrabble, checkers, or a game of pitch. She was a woman of faith and was a member of First Church of God in Independence. She had a fantastic memory, a great sense of humor, and a deep love for her family.
Betty is survived by her daughter, Loretta Lee Constant Hannsz (husband Caleb); daughter-in-law Petra Cruz Constant Rangel; grandchildren Crystal D. Fitzpatrick (husband Ryan), Amber R. O’Brien (husband Chris), Katherine L. Jones (partner Mike Johnston), Michael D. Constant (wife Amber), Jimmy D. Constant Jr. (wife Natalie), Jason W. Hannsz (wife Kerri); great-grandchildren Devin, Lillian, Miles, and Christian Fitzpatrick, Madison, Mason, and Gracelyn O’Brien, Elijah Johnston, Anna Brown, Alicia Constant, Sophia Cornett, Alyssa Young, and Kyle, Nicholas, and Eric Constant; 8 great-great-grandchildren; and numerous extended family and dear friends.
She was preceded in death by her husband Lucian L. Constant, Jr.; son James David “Jimmy” Constant; brothers Earl Victor Ervin and Donald Gene Ervin; and her parents Loyd and Frances Ervin.
Funeral services were held at Carson-Speaks Chapel, and she was interred in Woodlawn Cemetery.
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