Ollie Bell Ritchie Austin, 85, of Taylorsville, passed away on Saturday, June 22, 2019, in Carolina Caring, Newton, following a period of declining health.
Born June 10, 1934, in Alexander County, to the late Arthur Ray and Floy Bell Benefield Ritchie, Mrs. Austin was retired as a Day Care giver to over 116 children, as well as having been employed by Kiser-Roth and Hollar Hosiery Mills in Hickory.
She was preceded in death by her husband of 48 years, Rev. Billy Junior Austin, as well as a sister, Tressie Ritchie Setzer.
Serving as a pastor’s wife, she worked tirelessly into her later years in VBS and Sunday School. She was a flawless seamstress and will be long remembered for her apple pies and chicken and dumplings. She was an avid flower and vegetable grower.
She is survived by two sons, Tim Austin, and Jeff Austin and special friend Jon Denton, all of Taylorsville; a daughter, Penny Austin (Roger) Icenhour of Taylorsville; seven grandchildren, David Sharpe, and Dale (Stacey) Sharpe, both of Taylorsville, Dean (Lindsey) Austin of High Point, Chris (Heather) Austin of Hickory, Venessa Austin of Morganton, and Ethan (Alicia) Icenhour and Page Icenhour, both of Taylorsville; five great-grandchildren; four brothers, Claude, Glenn, Johnny and Harvey Ritchie, all of Taylorsville; three sisters, Betty Bowman and Katherine Davidson, both of Taylorsville, and Peggy Hollar of Hickory; and a number of nieces and nephews. Special friends consist of her “Faithful Ones,” Sunday school class, with Libby and Floyd Hayes and Vondel Shaw of Mississippi.
A heartfelt thank you goes to Carolina Caring Hospice of Newton for their excellent care of Mrs. Austin.
Visitation will be held on Tuesday evening, June 25, 2019, from 6-8:00 p.m., at Alexander Funeral and Cremation Service with funeral services on Wednesday, June 26, 2019, at 3:00 p.m., at Antioch Baptist Church, in Taylorsville, and burial will follow in the church cemetery. Rev. Mark Morris, Rev. Stuart White, and Rev. Larry Blakely will officiate. The body will lie in state thirty minutes before the funeral hour.
Pall bearers will be: David and Dale Sharpe, Dean and Chris Austin, Ethan Icenhour, and Jon Denton.
Memorials may be made to Carolina Caring Hospice, 3975 Robinson Rd., Newton, NC 28658; and St. Jude’s Memorial Giving, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105.
Condolences may be sent to www.alexfuneralservice.com.
Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to Alexander Funeral and Cremation Service.