Elizabeth “Betsy” Cowles (Ross) passed away peacefully at home on Tuesday, December 8, 2020, surrounded by her loving family. Elizabeth was born on December 14, 1954, at St. Elizabeth’s hospital in Brighton, MA to her parents Paul D. Ross and Norma M. Ross (Keefe). She attended school at St. Columbkille’s in Boston until her family moved to Holyoke, MA where she graduated from Holyoke High School in 1972.
Betsy, also affectionally known as Liza, Lidi, Lid, and Betty was an avid lover of music and enjoyed attending live events at Green River Music Festival, the Iron Horse, City Stage, and for years attended the Newport Folk Festival with family and friends. Betsy’s greatest joy was spending time with her family and those friends that became family. She was known fondly as “Betty Christmas” for her annual family Christmas gathering where food, music, and love radiated as brightly and loudly as her personality. Being at the beach was another one of her greatest pleasures and she looked forward to her yearly trips to Newport, RI, and in her younger years spent many summers in Hyannis, MA. An avid gardener, her yard was a source of great pride for many years. Her eclectic collection of metal yard art (fondly referred to as the “zoo”) provided great pleasure for her and the many people who stopped to admire it.
Betsy was a true advocate of children; her home and heart always open to not only her own children but to her many nieces and nephews and her grandchildren. She never let anyone leave without taking a bag of treats or a meal, as a reminder of their visit and her love for them.
She is survived by her husband of 40 years, Alan G. Cowles of Southwick, MA, her children Shannon Carlson (Paul), of Lanesborough, MA, Brooke Kratochvil (Dana) of Russell, MA, Meaghan Cowles of Niantic, CT, and Tanner Cowles (Jessica) of Westfield and her former son-in-law, Thomas Rodriguez of Westfield, her grandchildren, Savannah, Brynja, Dylan, Cooper, Carter, Ophelia, Roman, Maxwell, Derick, and Travis, her twin great-granddaughters Aria and Nadia and great-grandchildren, Kaelynne, Mason and Natalie.
She is also survived by her siblings, Norman Ross (Ann Marie) of Fort Walton Beach, FL, Bruce Ross (Judy) of San Antonio, TX, Dana Ross (Kathy) of West Moreland, NH, Stephen Ross (Kathleen) of Tiverton, RI, Robert Ross (Karen) of Newport, RI, Paula Murray – Wisniowski (Howard) of Tyngsboro, MA, Stephanie Wischof (David) of Griffin, GA, and Hilary Ross – Mongeon (Alain) of Warwick, RI, her brother-in-law Aiden (Kim) Cowles of Westfield, in addition to her numerous and beloved nieces and nephews.
She was predeceased by her parents Paul and Norma, brother Brian and sisters Beverly and Diane.
The family extends a special thank you to the staff and caregivers at Holyoke VNA Hospice Life Care for the care and support they provided during Betsy’s final weeks.
A celebration of Elizabeth’s life will be in late Spring/Summer 2021, at the convenience of the family.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Elizabeth’s memory to, Holyoke VNA Hospice Life Care, 20 Hospital Drive, 3rd Floor, Holyoke, MA 01040 or Highland Elder Services, 320 Riverside Drive, Suite B, Florence, MA 01062
Avalon Funeral & Cremation Services, 691 College Hwy, Southwick, MA 01077 is assisting the family with arrangements.
To express condolences to the family, share memories, or photos, please visit Betsy’s memorial page at www.avaloncelebrations.com
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