Elizabeth Avery Moize
Elizabeth Avery Moize
  • November 2, 1934 - October 28, 2017
  • Falls Church, Virginia

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Elizabeth Avery "Betsy" Moize of Falls Church, Virginia, passed away on October 28, 2017. Her beloved partner of 30 years, Janice L. Moody, was at her side. She was 82.

Betsy was born on November 2, 1934 in Farmville, Virginia. She grew up and attended schools in Virginia and Dallas, Texas, before graduating in 1954 from Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri. In 1959, Betsy arrived in the Washington D.C. area where she took a job answering letters and phones at the National Geographic Society. Within months her writing and editing smarts won her a position crafting legends (captions in NG parlance) for National Geographic Magazine. In time she would head the Legends staff of more than a dozen writers whose words filled much of the magazine's monthly content. In 1990 she capped a storied 38-year career by being named Associate Editor; becoming the first woman in the magazine's history to hold this high position. By example and leadership, Betsy cleared a path for many to follow; mentoring successive generations of writers and editors.

She retired in 1997. Her feature articles for the magazine ranged in topics from Daniel Boone and Austin, Texas, to tulips, immigrants in Australia, the Canadian Rockies, and the wonders of West Virginia. Betsy spent retirement doing her favorite things. She loved traveling anywhere in the world with Janice. Their fondest trips took them for many winters to Sanibel Island, Florida, and in summer to the crisp shores of Maine in Janice's native New England. Betsy craved cooking, dining out, playing golf, fishing fast streams, joining book clubs, and, most of all, spending treasured time with family and friends. In recent years, Betsy began painting, watercolors and oils. She joined a water aerobics class, held spirited election night parties, and never stopped playing her ukulele. Betsy also found time to write and edit for the famous watch company, Rolex.

She will be missed by all who knew her, for her wit, strength, generosity, and guidance.

Predeceasing Betsy are her parents, Norman Shiflett Moize, founder of a family title company, and Elizabeth Gould Moize, banker, trophy-winning golfer, and avid fisher woman.

She is survived by her spouse Janice Moody, whom she married on January 15, 2015; and by sister Ann Parkinson (Bill), and brothers William Gould Moize (Jean), of Lake Fork, Texas, and Norman Scott Moize, of Dallas, Texas.

Betsy cherished her six nieces: Mary Elizabeth (Betsy) Parkinson Manning, Christine Elizabeth Moize, Virginia (Jenny) Elaine Moize, Samantha Sullivan Baird, Molly Sullivan, and Jillian Sullivan, and her seven nephews: William Stone Parkinson III, Benjamin Gould Parkinson, Daniel Moize Parkinson, William Gould Moize Jr., Norman Scott Moize Jr., Kenneth Avery Moize, and Adam Lee Moize. To the numerous grand-nieces and nephews, she was simply Gabby (Great Aunt Betsy).

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Planned Parenthood (www.plannedparenthood.org) or Doctors Without Borders (www.doctorswithoutborders.org).

A celebration of Betsy's amazing life will be held Saturday, November 11 from 3:00 - 5:00 p.m. at Murphy Funeral Home, 1102 West Broad St. in Falls Church VA. For tributes and donations, visit: www.murphyfuneralhomes.com