Betty Carolyn Russart
May 19, 1948 - June 4, 2021

Surrounded by her family, Betty Carolyn Russart, 73, passed away peacefully on June 4, 2021 after a courageous 11-year battle with cancer. She was bornto the late Gerald and Betty Morenz in Royal Oak, Michigan and resided in Detroit area for much of her life, summering at her favorite place of Greenbush, Michigan.In 2005, she and her husband, Rolf, moved to Wilmington, NC to escape the harsh winters. Betty was a multi-talented woman, but above all, a loving and devoted wife, mother, and grandmother guided by he strong religious principles.

Betty comes from a large family with surviving siblings, David Morenz, Gerald Morenz (Jean), Wayne Morenz, Charlene Paddock (Joe), DeWayne Gates (Angelique) and Aaron Morenz. She is also survived by step-mother Rosalie, the wife of her late father Gerald and by step-father Bill Gates, the husband of her late mother, Betty. In 1983, Betty stumbled into Rolf- a Ford man in Detroit at a motorsport party- and soon they tied the knot to share a wonderful life together.

Her first priority always was her family. Her tremendous presence, humor and unconditional love will be greatly missed. The immediate Russart family consists of daughters Christina Sipila (Keith) and their three children (Samantha, Ben, and Ellie),daughter Jennifer and step-daughter Melissa Stankavich (Matt) and their two children(Lila and Preston). Devotion to God played a very important role throughout her life and she was an active member of the Port City Community Church (PC3) and particularly involved in various bible study programs.

One of her many talents was competing on the tennis courts where she was known for her aggressive net play that intimidated many of her opponents at the Club and USTA levels. Above all, Betty was a very creative and talented artist who could transform any space into a magnificent experience. Her work was on vivid display at the Domestic Violence Fundraiser at the opening of the Wilmington Convention Center. Her volunteerism and talents have extended to Relay for Life events, as well as various events at Porters Neck Country Club and Sports Center. Betty was a true perfectionist who never compromised her high standards- at times to the dismay of her helpers.

Special thanks go to Dr. John Strickler and his team at Duke Cancer Institute who were simply wonderful in treating Betty and prolonging her life well beyond expectations. Donations in Betty’s honor may be made in her name to the Duke Cancer Patient Support Program at or checks can be mailed to Duke Cancer Institute Development Office in care of Kristy Sartin, 300 W. Morgan Street, Suite 1200, Durham, NC 27701. Plans for a celebration of life will be announced later. Online condolences to the family may sent to


  • Andrea Schroeder Posted June 9, 2021 4:13 pm

    What an amazing woman! Thinking about you all at this tough time. Love you Jenn! Andrea Schroeder

  • sandra moulin Posted June 9, 2021 6:16 pm

    It is with such a sad heart that I write this condolence. Betty was an incredible woman. She was talented, especially kind, energetic, creative, loving, loyal, and she was a true role model of grace and strength as she battled this horrible disease for over ten years. We will always remember her passion on the tennis court, her love of entertaining in her beautiful home with Rolf and her kindness to all who knew her. She will be missed, but always remembered fondly.
    Sandy and Mark Moulin

  • Dene McIntosh Posted June 9, 2021 8:22 pm

    My best shopping buddy, friend and keeper of my secrets has gone to be with the Lord in Heaven. Betty was the most passionate and loving person that I have ever known and she gave her all to whatever cause or activity in which she was involved. She will be greatly missed every day by her family and friends.

  • Mary Beth Ridenour Posted June 10, 2021 2:24 pm

    My heartaches upon hearing of my life long dear friend Betty passing on to glory. She loved the Lord and would always have a message from the Bible to comfort me as needed.
    I had the pleasure of living close to Betty and Rolf’s home in West Bloomfield,Mi and watched her children grow up and I shared her love for them. She gave of her heart and talents freely as all her North Carolina friends found to be true. Forever in my heart,
    Mary Beth

  • Susan and Stephan Stubits Posted June 10, 2021 9:51 pm

    Betty was the epitome of grace and courage, of strength and sparkle and that never-ending spirit and drive. She lived life to the fullest with zeal and passion, always doing her best for everyone in her life. She is one of the best friends I have ever known. There are truly not enough words to describe the remarkable and amazing person that she was to me and to all whom she had touched over her lifetime. Our hearts go out to Rolf, Jennifer, Christina, Sammy, Ben, Ellie and her entire family.

    Betty will be missed beyond words.

  • Susan Donnee Posted June 11, 2021 11:57 am

    It’s with great sadness John and I send condolences to Rolf and your family on the passing of Betty. I too was one of the lucky ones to have played tennis with her and enjoyed her stories of her wonderfully creative endeavors involving decorating, sewing and many other talents. We have you in our prayers at this sad time. John and Susan Donnee

  • Nancy and Art Fitzgerald Posted June 11, 2021 8:41 pm

    We certainly will miss Betty with her vivacious and upbeat attitude.

    She was very kind and we are certainly blessed to have known her.

    Rest In Peace, Betty.

    Nancy and Art Fitzgerald

  • Susie beale Posted June 12, 2021 12:50 am

    Betty was a person everyone liked. She was a very talented person and gracious to all. She will be very much missed by her family and friends. God’s peace be with you. Susie and Guy Beale

  • Linda Miles Posted June 12, 2021 5:39 pm

    Dear family, I loved her and will miss her terribly. So sorry you will not have her in your lives, but she definitely left behind many memories for us all.

  • Zora Jordanovova Posted June 12, 2021 8:46 pm

    I am beyond grateful for the chance to meet Betty in my life while I was an exchange student in the Porters Neck neighborhood in 2017. It was a pleasure to have her as a friend while spending the best year of my life. Betty will be truly missed and the memories that we have shared will never be forgotten.

    May my condolences bring you and your family comfort and may my prayers ease the pain of this loss.

    Zora Jordanovova, exchange student from Slovakia

  • Mary Vogelsong Posted June 13, 2021 12:26 am

    We are so sorry for your loss of Betty. She was such a bright light, so uplifting, inspiring and fun! Wishing you much peace. Eddie and Mary Vogelsong

  • Linda S Wright Posted June 14, 2021 2:36 pm

    I was saddened to hear of Bettys passing. She will always be remembered as kind, considerate and a good friend. She was so generous to share her incredible talent with the many club events. She will be missed. Hugs, Linda Wright

  • Nicki McLaughlin Skipper Posted June 15, 2021 8:03 pm

    I am blessed to have many fond memories of Mrs. Betty Russart. I thoroughly enjoyed spending time with Betty, her smile, laugh, inventive event ideas and natural knack for making any occasion an over the top work of art. God bless you Betty, my thoughts are with you and your family.

    Nicki Skipper

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