Civic volunteer Betsy Anderson, widow of longtime newspaper editor Lee Anderson, dies at 90

Betsy and Lee Anderson at his office at the then-Chattanooga News-Free Press in 1971. Contributed photo

Elizabeth McDonald "Betsy" Anderson, a longtime Chattanooga volunteer, church and civic leader, died June 8 in Atlanta, where she had resided the last four years. She was 90.

She was the widow of Lee S. Anderson, editor of the Chattanooga Free Press for nearly 60 years, and the middle of five children of Elizabeth W. McDonald and Roy K. McDonald, founder and chairman of the Chattanooga Free Press for 54 years. The Free Press merged with The Chattanooga Times in 1999 to become the current Chattanooga Times Free Press.

A homemaker, Anderson was known to be curious and creative. She was active in interior design, landscaping, art, Christian counseling, writing and traveling the world.

She was a graduate of Girls Preparatory School, the University of Chattanooga and Richmont University. She had been active with the Chambliss Children's Home and had been chairwoman of its board. She had been a Bible teacher and president of the Women in the Church at First Presbyterian Church, as well as its Woman of the Year. She cherished her Scots-Presbyterian heritage to the point she learned to play bagpipes to entertain herself and others and also loved to play the piano.

Anderson is survived by two daughters, Corinne Anderson Adams and Mary Stewart Anderson, both of Atlanta; two grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

Her funeral will be at Chattanooga's First Presbyterian Church, 554 McCallie Ave., on Wednesday at 2 p.m. Visitation will begin at 1 p.m.

Memorial donations may be made to First Presbyterian Church or the Kevin Baker Music Program for children in the inner-city English Avenue community of Atlanta.