Edna Crew Caruthers died January 10, 2022 following a brief period of declining health. Edna, 90, was born at Watts Hospital on January 25, 1931 to the late Early Edgar and Verta Webster Crew. She was also preceded in death by her husband of 57 years, Wade Glen Caruthers, Jr.
Edna grew up on Iredell Street in Durham’s Watts-Hillandale neighborhood. She graduated from Durham High School in 1949 and Watts School of Nursing in 1952; she also did graduate work at Duke University School of Nursing. In her early career, Edna was a nurse at Watts Hospital until she and Glen began their family in the home they built in Cedar Grove.
From there she immersed herself in family and community, raising her four daughters, taking on leadership roles in Girl Scouts, and devoting years of service to Cedar Grove United Methodist Church as a member of the choir and in a variety of other roles in the life of the church. She was a business partner to Glen in the success of Cedar Grove Farm, tending to the administrative end of their operation that developed one of the finest herds of Registered Holsteins in the country. Edna was co-founder of the National Holstein Women's Scholarship Organization, which continues to this day and has awarded over 170 scholarships since its inception in 1980. Together, she and Glen traveled extensively throughout the U.S. and abroad, on both Holstein USA business and numerous trips with family and friends.
For years, Edna and Glen followed NC State football and basketball as season ticket holders and were on hand in 1983 when the Wolfpack cut down the nets in Albuquerque. Her tailgate spreads for ballgames and the meals she prepared for dairy shows at the North Carolina State Fair were experiences to behold, particularly when she included a batch of her world class homemade chicken salad, and her “Harvest Festival Cranberry Salad” was a menu staple at the church’s annual fundraising event for years. Edna indeed loved her Cedar Grove community, and her home was the setting for many happy gatherings throughout the years, where her patio and spacious lawn became the go-to place for immediate and extended family celebrations. She and Glen had a standing date most every Sunday at Huey’s in Mebane where they met close friends for dinner and fellowship, and for the past 20-plus years Edna enjoyed treks to her vacation home at Caswell Beach where she visited with friends she made in the Ocean Greens neighborhood. She was a great listener, an encourager, a spirited pianist, and it was a joy to be in her company.
Edna is survived by four daughters, Susan Gentry (Jim) of Greensboro, Kathy Shambley (Johnny) of Cedar Grove, Carol Lovingood (Joe) of Efland and Sara Dyson (Sid Collins) of High Point.
Also, left to cherish the memory of their “Mama C” are grandchildren Leslie Gentry Sparks (Yancy) of Sparta, James Gentry (Kelly) of Greensboro, Rachel Gentry (Alec Rotunda) of Washington, DC, Lillian Lovingood of Knoxville, TN, Julia Lovingood of Chapel Hill, Madison Dyson of Jersey City, NJ, Kate Dyson of High Point and great grandchildren, Charlotte, Wade and Grace. Edna was a charter member of the Cedar Grove Quilters, and this Christmas held a particularly special moment when each of her grandchildren received a quilt that Mama C had made specifically for them.
The family would like to extend special thanks to her caregivers, Juana, Diana and Edwina, whose engaging presence and exceptional care brought her comfort, friendship, and happiness in her final months.
A graveside service to celebrate Edna’s life will take place at Cedar Grove United Methodist Church, 5218 Efland Cedar Grove Rd., Cedar Grove, on Tuesday, January 18 at 2:00 p.m., with the Reverend David Harvin and the Reverend Monica Beacham officiating. Attendees are asked to wear masks and maintain social distance. Memorial contributions may be made to the Holstein Women's Scholarship Organization, Inc. (C/O Kate Geppert, 4728 County Road 240, Kingdom City MO 65262); Watts School of Nursing Alumni Association (2828 Croasdaile Drive - Suite 200, Durham NC 27705-2505 – Attn: Ethel Clay Price Scholarship); Cedar Grove United Methodist Church Music Fund (PO Box 138, Cedar Grove NC 27231 – Attn: Music Fund).
Walker’s Funeral Home in Hillsborough is assisting the family.