Elizabeth (Beth) Richards Owens

October 26, 1925 ~ March 3, 2023 (age 97) 97 Years Old


Elizabeth (Beth) Richards Owens died peacefully surrounded by loved ones in her skilled nursing facility on March 3, 2023, after a short illness. She is survived by her brother David O. Richards of Newark, Ohio; her three children, Christopher Lloyd Owens of Austin, Texas; Stephanie Owens Lurie of Montclair, New Jersey; and Cynthia Richards Owens of Durham, North Carolina; sons-in-law Philip Bors and Mark Lurie; daughters-in-law Susan Owens and Sudarat Owens; and seven grandchildren. She was predeceased by her husband, Bennett Lee Owens, and son Timothy Dwight Owens.

Elizabeth Richards was born on October 26, 1925, in Columbus, Ohio to parents Clarence Earl Richards and Harriet Hunt Richards. Beth attended the Columbus School for Girls and then Denison University, where she met Bennett Owens, and they married in Columbus on July 3, 1948. They had four children together and remained married until Benn's death 62 years later.

Beth earned a bachelor’s degree from Yale Divinity School with a major in education. She supported her husband's career as an Episcopalian priest in Arlington, Ohio, Bexley, Ohio, and Providence, Rhode Island before the family of six moved to Montclair, New Jersey in 1965. Beth worked as an administrative assistant at the United Church Board for World Services in New York City until her retirement in 1990. Her department placed teachers in Turkey, and one of the great thrills of her life was visiting that country to check on their progress. She also enjoyed vacationing in Paris, France with Benn.

Beth and Benn retired to Vero Beach, Florida, where they lived for several years before they relocated to Fearrington Village in Pittsboro, North Carolina. After Bennett's death in 2010, Beth moved into Galloway Ridge and became one of their long-term residents. She could often be found doing the New York Times crossword puzzle, reading The New Yorker, having a glass of wine with her daughter Cindy, or watching "The Rachel Maddow Show." Residents and staff alike call her "the absolute sweetest person; someone who always had a smile on her face."

Donations may be made to Planned Parenthood or the ACLU.

Condolences may be made at

Donaldson Funeral Home & Crematory is honored to serve the Owens family.


Gathering of Family and Friends
May 27, 2023

2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Donaldson Funeral Home & Crematory Griffin Chapel
396 West St.
Pittsboro, NC 27312


Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc. Attn: Online Services
P.O. Box 97166 Washington, DC 20090-7166, Washington, DC WA 20090-7166


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