Elizabeth Ross Bare, an accomplished public school teacher and attorney who achieved the rank of Bronze Life Master from the American Contract Bridge League, passed away Sunday, Sept. 6, 2020, in her hometown of Concord, NC. She was 75.
Her family, friends and colleagues knew her as Betsy. From classrooms to courtrooms to bridge games, Betsy touched thousands of lives across North Carolina. Betsy grew up a beauty queen and the smartest person in the room in an era where the latter was not always an advantageous trait for young women. With brainpower and charisma, she ultimately burst through barriers to take on leadership roles in the male dominated cultures of law enforcement and local criminal courts.
Betsy loved children and animals. Over time, she grew less and less enchanted with grown-ups. Betsy chose to live in the moment and sought out happiness without apology, whether through daily dosages of ice cream and cake or the British and Australian cable shows she watched in bulk. Throughout her life, she was fanatical about protecting her skin from the sun and loyal to Dutch Tulips as the shade of color for her toenails.
Betsy demonstrated unusual resilience. Over the past decade, she privately fought multiple chronic diseases, including asthma and COPD, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and kidney stones. She suffered constant pain from deteriorating discs in her lower back. Twice, in 1998 and 2019, she overcame breast cancer. As a child, she lost the hearing in her left ear. After age 70, she began to suffer macular degeneration. Through all of this, she kept her pain private and brought a smile and laughter to every encounter. As her body failed, Betsy’s mind remained sharp. Determined to avoid dementia, she worked crossword puzzles and word jumbles and watched Jeopardy daily.
In her most recent illness, she was admitted to Atrium Health Cabarrus hospital on August 10 with a blood infection. She subsequently tested positive for COVID-19. After a week of experiencing what doctors described as “mild” COVID-19 symptoms, in a period of 24 hours the coronavirus attacked her lungs and turned deadly. She received the experimental convalescent plasma treatment and, in accordance with her directive, allowed use of the ventilator in order to see if her body might recover. As Betsy approached the end of her life, she was comforted by conversations with her daughter, Elizabeth Warren-Mikes, granddaughter, Caroline Mikes, and her husband, John Bare.
The family will gather for a private burial at Concord’s Oakwood Cemetery, where Betsy will be buried alongside her mother. The family will host a celebration of Betsy’s life at a later date. To honor Betsy, the family encourages donations to….