Etta C. Cuthrell



Etta C. Cuthrell
July 23, 1929 – April 10, 2017

Etta Mae Cahoon Cuthrell, 87, of the Kilkenny Community, died, April 10, 2017 at Cross Creek Health Care Center, Swan Quarter.

Born in Tyrrell County, July 23, 1929, she was the daughter of the late William Thomas and Martha Cartwright Cahoon.

She was wife to William A. Cuthrell for 64.5 years. She is mother to six children; grandmother to nine grandchildren; great-grandmother to twenty great grandchildren and great great-grandmother to two and one half great-greatgrandchildren. She is Aunt Etta Mae to many, many nieces, nephews, great nieces and great nephews. Her love shines from deep within and there has always been plenty for all. Over the years, she has quietly offered guidance and wisdom when called upon. As a Mother, Grandmother, Aunt, Friend and Neighbor her worth cannot be measured.

Along with rearing six children in a small house, on a small farm, she also shared her home with daddy’s mother and father. As they approached their golden years and couldn’t do things for themselves, mama cared for them until their death. By the 1970s her parents were getting older and grandma wasn’t physically able to prepare their meals. Mama began cooking extra food every day so she could make sure that grandmamma and granddaddy had a hot meal at lunchtime and enough left for supper. She would deliver their meal first, and then she and daddy would eat. Even though these loved ones are gone, she still finds joy in sharing food with anyone who stops by to visit her. She has always taken care of someone.

When we were small, we had seven first cousins, about the same age as we were who lived across the road from our house. Their father (daddy’s brother) died at a young age and their Mother (mama’s sister) was hospitalized from time-to-time. During those times when our aunt was in the hospital, Mama took her children into our home, and we became one larger but happy family. It was important to her that the children felt secure and didn’t have the worry about where they were going to stay. Mama made sure we all had a hot breakfast each morning and that our homework was done and we were dressed up ready to go to school. She also insisted that we be on our best behavior at school. If someone bothered one of us, we just needed to report it back to her and she would take care of the situation. Unfortunately, our aunt was diagnosed with cancer and sick for an extended period of time before she died at the age of 54. Mama stepped right into the role of going across the road every day and taking care of her sister. Today we share our mama with our cousins and say that we are a family of 13 children. More recently, she cared for her husband until he passed away in May 2009.

For many years, Mother was known from Manteo to Virginia Beach because she milked two cows by hand every morning and every night. People would come from all around to get a pint of cream. Over the years many friendships were made and are still on-going. People would come to get milk and cream but stayed to visit and share a meal.

One year before Christmas, a group of young people came to sing Christmas Carols for mama. She knew they were coming so she had a basket of large navel oranges all ready to pass out after the singing. As she was passing out the oranges, one little fellow in the back of the group ask, “Aunt Etta Mae, do you have any biscuits?” Mother can’t hear so an older child asked a little louder, “Aunt Etta Mae, Pac Man wants to know if you have any biscuits?” Mom stated she did have biscuits and went into the kitchen and brought out a plate of biscuits. The children all left with a biscuit and a navel orange.

Several times each week, the school bus stops at her house and a great granddaughter and a great grandson get off the bus to stay with her until their mother comes home from work. These two special little people know that “granny” will have a snack ready for them.

Etta Mae Cuthrell has lived her life with a positive attitude, full of faith, grace and dignity. Her motto has always been to look on the bright side with a cup that is half-full. This is a lady who has worked very hard all of her life. She has served as a caregiver for the elderly, Sunday school teacher for the young, and coach for the grandchildren, and a good neighbor for all.

Surviving are two sons; Ronald L. Cuthrell and wife Frances, Ernie Cuthrell both of Fairfield; four daughters, Willene C. Brinn and husband Burl of Belhaven, Helen C. Martin of Greenville, Rita C. Marshall and husband Phillip of Nashville and Delia C. Mooney and husband Glenn of Fairfield; nine grandchildren; twenty great-grandchildren; two and one half great great-grandchildren; two brothers, Delmo E. Cahoon and wife Sharon of Edenton and Ted Cahoon and wife Chris of Fairfield.

Funeral services will be held at 2:00 pm Thursday at the family plot in Bethlehem Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery, Steve Bryan will officiate.

She was preceded in death by four brothers and five sisters.

In lieu of flowers memorial contributions can be made to the Bethlehem Primitive Baptist Church, P.O. Box 159, Engelhard, NC 27824

The family will receive friends at Bryan Funeral Service, Columbia on Wednesday evening between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m.