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Betty Lou Campbell, 83, raconteur, singer, pilot

Betty Lou Hillock Campbell

Betty Lou Hillock Campbell passed away in the early morning hours of November 23rd.

She is survived by her six children, Shannon Campbell, Colbi Campbell, Jason Campbell, Jessica Campbell, Hillary Campbell Johnson, Valerie Campbell,  and her ten grandchildren.

She was born in Jacksonville, Florida, on March 23, 1926, and although the family moved often, she grew up in Maryland and California. During World War II she married Sullivan Graham Campbell, and they moved to Cazenovia, NY, where they both attended Syracuse University.  There she received her Bachelor’s Degree in music/voice and her Master’s Degree in Library Science.  She obtained her pilot’s license at a time when it was unusual for women to do so, and in her lifetime traveled all over the world.  She had a lifelong love of music (she often pleased the crowds with her vocal rendition of “Summertime”), opera and theater but was also at ease in the company of many top scientists.

Betty Lou accompanied her husband through his career as they explored the latest scientific innovations which would pave the way for future technologies that are so integral our life today; through IBM (one of the world’s first computers) and  Xerox (the early copying machines).  In 1968 they moved to Ridgefield, Connecticut, to begin Graphic Sciences, the first company to make the fax machine.

Betty Lou was known for her vivacious personality, sense of humor and intelligence.  No story about her would be complete without mention of her Christmas parties, which were legendary.  In her life she has entertained many celebrities including scientists, generals, politicians, famous artists, writers and musicians, and even an astronaut or two, but she stated that her greatest achievement and love was her family.  She will be greatly missed by her family and the world.

Public viewing will be on Monday, November 26, from 4-7:00 pm, at Kane Funeral Home (across from the Post Office), 25 Catoonah St., Ridgefield CT, 06877, phone (203) 438-6597, followed by a Celebration of Life at her home, 164 Main Street, Ridgefield, CT 06877 .

Friends and family wishing to attend and/or participate in the Eulogy are asked to gather at 9:45 a.m. on Tuesday November 27th. The Eulogy will begin at 10:00 at Kane Funeral Home, 25 Catoonah St., Ridgefield CT, 06877. Following the Eulogy we will proceed to internment at Central Cemetery in New Milford, CT (across from New Milford Hospital) (860) 354-6174. To contact the family for further information please call (407) 791-3444 or (407) 739-7670.

Any condolences may be sent to 164 Main Street, Ridgefield, CT, 06877.

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  • Linda Ward

    Mrs.Betty Lou Campbell was an absolutely charming lady and will be missed. She had such a grand presense and such a joy of life that when she walked into a room you could not help but notice and smile with her. I have known her since I was 10 years old, and my earliest memories of her was that she was someone to admire and respect. She is my best friend’s mother and my heart goes out to all of her wonderful children and grandchildren. I feel that I was truly blessed to have known her. May God keep watch over you Mrs. Campbell and sweet dreams. Love, Linda

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