Betty Jo Zeibig Hitt passed away March 9, 2016 in Sweetwater,Texas. She was born in Crowell, Texas on Oct. 7, 1925 to parents Homer Richard Zeibig and Velma B. Meadors Zeibig.
Jo was a fourth generation resident of Foard County, Texas. She grew up on the family farm homesteaded by her great-great grandfather in 1886. She graduated from Crowell High School in 1943. In 1947 she graduated from Howard Payne University with a business degree and a teaching certificate. Jo earned a master’s degree in special education from Texas Woman’s University in Denton. She and Clark Osvel Hitt, Jr. (fellow HPU graduate) married on Dec. 19, 1947. She taught in Forney, Crowell, and Lancaster School Districts of Texas. While teaching in Richardson ISD, she and two other teachers were asked by Superintendent J.J. Pearce to create the first special education program in the district. From there, she moved to the Region 10 Education Service Center in Richardson as Coordinator of Special Education. Jo then worked at the University of Texas, Dallas where she co-authored a book on training teachers of visually impaired students. In the 1970s she worked at Region 9 in Wichita Falls, followed by three years at Region 18 in Midland. Jo ended her education career with the Department of Defense Dependents Schools (DoDDS) bringing military base schools into compliance with special education guidelines. This assignment allowed her and Clark to travel to such places as Panama, Bermuda, Newfoundland, Iceland, the Island of Antigua and Guantanamo Bay, Cuba (GTMO).
Jo spent many years supporting her husband Clark’s interests in the Army’s Tenth Mountain Division Association of which he served during WWII. They were able to go on several trips to Italy for the 10th’s international reunions. She was a loving mother to her two daughters and devoted wife to Clark. Jo was a lifetime member of the Southern Baptist Church and served her Lord Jesus in several churches throughout Texas.
Betty Jo was preceded in death by her parents. She is survived by her husband of 68 years, Clark O. Hitt, Jr. of Sweetwater; daughter Jennie Kay Carmichael and son-in-law C.E. of Sweetwater; daughter Cindy Jo Hitt of Dallas. She was “MamMaw” to granddaughter, Stacie Kay and husband Keith Earnest of Plains; grandson, Andrew Elijah Carmichael and wife Allison Blake, of Joplin, MO; and four great-grandchildren, Riley Kay and Kennedy Beth Earnest of Plains; Cooper Elijah and McKenzie Blake Carmichael of Joplin; her sister, Oleta Faye Statser of Crowell; and four sisters-in-law. She was “Aunt Jo” to numerous nieces and nephews.
A visitation will be held from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., Friday, March 11, 2016, at the Womack-Manard Funeral Home, Crowell. Services will be held Saturday, March 12, 2016 at 2 p.m., at the First Baptist Church, Crowell. Interment will follow in Crowell Cemetery under the direction of Womack Manard Funeral Home.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Hendrick Hospice Care in Abilene, First Baptist Church of Crowell, Howard Payne University, Brownwood, or a charity of your choice.
Online condolences may be made to the family at www.sullivanfuneralhomevernon.com.