Linda S. Beck

Published 2:13 pm Thursday, November 8, 2018

Linda S. Beck, local writer and speaker, died on Oct. 31, 2018.

Because of her disability, it was her choice to donate her body to the Wake Forest School of Science and Medicine for study by doctors-to-be.  Because of having written more than 500 true stories about her loves, losses, and disabilities, she preferred to be called Linda, or Ms. Linda by many children in her life. She was the daughter of Mary Ada Wilson Spry Koontz and never knew her father. Both parents are deceased as is her older brother, Thomas A. Spry and her husband, Joe S. Beck, whom she married in June 1965 two weeks after high school graduation. They were married until Feb. 26, 1993 when he died with cancer.

Survivors: 2 daughters, Sherry B. Elvington (Jeff), and Sonya B. Parrish (Bill); grandchildren, Heather P. Compton (Brandon), Hannah P. Ruth (Kestler), William Daniel Parrish Jr. (Megan), Hobie Michael Parrish (Destiny) and Hallie Renee Parrish; great-grandchildren, (twins) Kestler Wilson Ruth and Khloe Jean Ruth; a brother, Michael J. Koontz; a sister, Mary Ludwig Tanner (Bill); a nephew, Robbie G. Ludwig (Penny); her stepsister, Ethel Glore; other nieces, nephews, and cousins; and a aunt in Texas.

She had many friends that it is not possible to add all the people she loved and appreciated for their relationships and generosity in helping her survive her life without Joe and other loved ones. She was also thrilled to have become close friends with many of her readers and Christian friends. The couple were the Woodleaf 4-H leaders for one of the largest clubs in Rowan County and with the help of several other parents a number of Woodleaf 4-H teenagers won trips to Chicago where they also won scholarships.  After his death and the marriages of their daughters, she lived alone for the first time in her life. She sold their home and moved to an apartment with an outdoor pool.  Water therapy became her favorite hobby and at age 47 she overcame her fear of water and taught herself to swim, lost weight, and became the healthiest she had been in years.  One friend interested her in becoming a writer, another one got her interested in speaking, and in 1996 she was able to start driving after seven years of depending on others.  The Lord called her to become a speaker for the Christian Women’s Clubs. She traveled all over NC, parts of SC, TN, and VA. In March 2002 she moved to the handicapped dollhouse built near Woodleaf, continued to drive and speak until July 4 when she had a massive MS attack which resulted in lesions in her brain and T-6 on her spinal column. A neurologist told her she would probably never be able to stand, walk, swim, float, or drive again. She enjoyed doing some of all those things in the following years.  She refused to live in fear and trusted that God would call her home in His timing, not hers. In spite of her numerous health problems, she never gave up.  She loved playing in her flowers and had several falls from her power chair. The last broken leg opened the door to more findings of additional heart problems and she died from pneumonia and congestive heart failure.

There will be a celebration of life on Saturday, Nov. 10 from 2-4 p.m. at Cleveland First Baptist Church in Cleveland.