Elizabeth Jewel Doyle Stratman passed peacefully from this life on March 23, 2018, surrounded by her family. She joined her husband and two children in heaven after a short illness.
Betty was born in Houston on October 4, 1928, to Stuart James Doyle and Marguerite Ann Neumann, the only girl between two brothers. After the family moved to Galveston, she attended Sacred Heart grade school and Dominican High School. She married Joseph Lee Stratman on July 1, 1950, enjoying 57 years with him until his death. She was a member of St. Mary of the Miraculous Medal Church for 50+ years, and was a member of St. Thomas Altar Group and a patron of St. Vincent de Paul. One of her proudest moments came at the ordination of Joe Jr. to the priesthood. (Also, her longest-running party, as Catholics are wont to do.)
Mom was a woman of boundless strength, fierce love, and abiding faith. As a stay-at-home mom of four, she was there not only for her kids, and her kids’ friends, and her friends’ kids, but in volunteer work, to many other kids as well. Her ceramics found homes all over the area, and she was up for a lively philosophical “discussion” with any takers. Also, she really loved a good bull red run.
When her oldest and youngest were diagnosed with myotonic muscular dystrophy, she was tested to her limits. Watching two of her children slowly waste away almost broke her, especially her baby, fellow old movie aficionado and best friend Judy. At every turn, her deep Catholic faith shined through, and she turned that pain and grief into a passionate generosity toward the hungry and homeless.
As Gram, she was intimately involved in her grandkids’ lives up until the end. From meeting the bus and making sure they washed their hands, to chatting about trains and Exxon stock, to checking on the status of their bank accounts and making them promise to tell her if they needed anything, to getting that VW Rabbit convertible because she wasn’t going to be an old grandma, to telling the Pacific Coaster to stay out of the water because of great whites, to being openly interested in the existential and baptismal status of potential and actual great grandkids, to knowing to check her scooter speed after visits, to being a mythical huntress of Icelandic cats and Irish serpents, she was an all-around pentass moper. To her great-grands, she was Grandma Betty who always had a big bowl of chocolates on the table, and climbable chairs to access them.
She is preceded in death by her parents, husband Joe, daughter Judy Stratman, son Father Joe Stratman, Jr., and brother Jack Doyle.
She is survived by daughters Mary Stratman Dickson and husband Kyle, and Sharon Stratman, all of Texas City; brother Pat Doyle of Clear Lake; grandchildren Victoria Dickson and partner Nicholas Escasany of Los Angeles, Kyle Dickson and wife Loralee of Houston, Lauren Smith and partner Chelsea Vasquez of New York, Brigid Smith of College Station, and Katie Mott and husband Steven of Santa Fe; great-grandchildren Carli, Corbin and Carter Mott; and dear friend and caretaker Lisa Thurmond.
The Funeral Liturgy will be held on Holy Saturday morning, March 31, 2018, at 11:00 am at St. Mary of the Miraculous Medal Church, Revs. Douglas Guthrie and Clint Ressler presiding. Visitation will immediately precede the Liturgy from 9:00 – 11:00 am, also at the church. Pallbearers are Kyle Dickson, Nicholas Escasany, Kyle Dickson, Jr., Lauren Smith, Steven Mott, and Jim McKenna. Honorary pallbearers are Pat Doyle, John Ringer, and John McKenna.
Special thanks to her brother Pat, loving friends Lou and John Ringer, and caretaker Lourdes Giles for taking such good care of her at home. Special thanks also to Dr. David Nickeson and the ICU nurses at Mainland Medical Center, especially Anne, Sam, Yvonne, Priscilla, and Brianna, who took care of both Mom and us during her last days.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The Society of St. Vincent de Paul or the charity of your choice.
My thoughts and prayers are with the family. Mrs stratman will be missed dearly.
Sunshine and familyTexas city, TX
Sharon & Family,
Keeping y'all in our thoughts.
Cyndi & Michael, LA