Cole, Elizabeth

Cole, Elizabeth Ann "Betsy"

Elizabeth "Betsy" Ann Cole, age 75, passed away at her home in Naples, Florida on August 22, 2023, comforted by her husband, Barry Belt.

Betsy was born in Middletown, Ohio on August 21, 1948, to Guerney H. and Jeanne Thiel Cole. She graduated from Middletown High School as class salutatorian in 1966, and from Duke University, Phi Beta Kappa, in 1970. Having completed her master's degree in education, also at Duke, Betsy began her career in Portland, Oregon as English teacher and then counselor, and finally as administrator for Portland Public Schools. She also served as adjunct professor at Lewis and Clark College.

Betsy was a life-long hiker and volkswalker and loved spending time with family and friends. She was an avid bridge player and relished the competition. She traveled extensively, and at one time had a counseling fellowship at St. Andrews University in Scotland, residing there for several months.

When she became Bill Guffy's wife, she immediately embraced her new, much larger family: two adult children and four grandchildren, each of whom she cherished. A college pal said of her, "Betsy was a totally accepting, open-hearted friend." Betsy was preceded in death by her parents and her husband, William P. Guffy. She is survived by her brother, Stephen T. Cole, her sister, Christine L. Cole, her niece, Irie Eve Hoffman, her husband, Barry Belt, and her beloved step-children and grandchildren. Those interested in attending Betsy's Celebration of Life in Portland, Oregon may contact the family at

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