Zoa Bates Stephenson King

Published 5:13 pm Friday, April 19, 2019

MURFREESBORO, N.C. — On Thursday April 18, 2019, in the early hours of the morning surrounded by her loved ones, Zoa Bates Stephenson King peacefully left this earth to be reunited with her loving husband, Claud Marion King, in heaven.

Zoa Bates
Stephenson King

It only took her three months to decide to spend the rest of her life with Claud, her husband of 79 years. Only 44 short days after his passing she went to spend eternity with the man she has loved all of her life.

Bates started and closed the chapters of her earthly life in Hertford County, North Carolina, with many places to call home in between, as the wife of a Navy Chief Petty Officer. Bates was known to always leave the house with lipstick and a matching purse and pair of heels, as any fine southern lady would.

She filled her days in the kitchen baking and taking the best care of her family.

Besides her parents, Bates was preceded in death by her husband, Claud, and sisters, Katherine Freeling, Ella Demyer DiPietro, Betty Fred Crane, Rebecca Walker and Blanche Stephenson; as well as her brother, Tony Stephenson and wife, Shirley.

Bates is survived by her only daughter, Betty King Braxton and husband, Ted, of Murfreesboro; two granddaughters, Cindy Braxton Sanders and husband, Todd, of Windsor, Virginia; and Betty Jo Braxton Merritt and husband, Jeffery, of Fayetteville, North Carolina; two great-grandsons, Clay Darden and Andrew Darden and wife, Amanda, both of Carrsville, North Carolina; two great-granddaughters, Mary Darden Leitner and husband, Cullen, of Suffolk, Virginia, and Emily Merritt of Fayetteville; three great- great-grandchildren, Blake, Harper and Bennett.

A special thanks goes out to Vanessa, Ella and many other caregivers who filled Bates’ final years with love and laughter.

Funeral arrangements have been made for Saturday, April 20, at 2 p.m., in Mt. Tabor Baptist Church with visitation to follow in the fellowship hall. There will be a burial following the visitation at Riverside Cemetery in Murfreesboro.

Donations may be made to Mt. Tabor Baptist Church in Bates’ memory directly at 112 East, Mt. Tabor Church Road, Ahoskie, NC 27910; or online by visiting tmcfunding.com/search fund; then type Bates King.

Garrett-Sykes Memorial Chapel, Murfreesboro, North Carolina is assisting the King family with arrangements, and online condolences may be directed to the family by visiting garrettsykesfs.com.