HSLDA fondly remembers our friend and coworker, special needs consultant Betty Statnick, who died on May 2, 2017, at age 87.
Betty enthusiastically served our members for 19 years. She began working for HSLDA in 1995 and during her first 10 years with us, she was our only educational consultant.
Her colleagues remember her as a good listener who was warm, kind, and encouraging—but also candid when she had to tell people something difficult that they needed to hear. She had an incredible memory. She would remember callers’ names and phone numbers and would often share encouraging quotes and Bible verses with them from memory. She was devoted to serving our members and would often put in time even at night ministering to people outside of working hours. For her, it wasn’t just a job—it was a ministry, and she truly enjoyed it.
Betty earned a Master of Education with an emphasis in learning disabilities from Marymount University of Virginia. Before she came to work at HSLDA, she spent over 20 years helping people with special needs from elementary through adult levels, in public and private school settings. Later, she began to work with the homeschooling community because she wanted an opportunity to work more closely with parents who were deeply involved and invested in their children’s education.
“Betty was much more than just a technician,” HSLDA President Mike Smith recalls. “She really cared.”
Betty was known for her deep faith. Chuck Hurst recalls how she would share anecdotes of answered prayer when she would come into the office for staff meetings. Betty was always praying that God would use her to bless others in whatever situation she happened to be in. Later, she would recount how she had an opportunity to encourage someone. “Now Chuck, that’s just God!” she would say. She was so excited to see how God was doing things through her and around her. Betty was also a founding member and prayer warrior of Cornerstone Chapel, a church congregation in northern Virginia.
Another of our special needs consultants, Faith Berens, remembers Betty as a dear friend and mentor. When Faith was a teenager, Betty advised her to pursue studies in the field of reading specialization. Later, Betty encouraged Faith to join HSLDA’s consultant team.
A lifelong student with a sharp and insightful mind, Betty loved to sit out on her deck and read the latest research in her field—with the cordless phone beside her in case a member called with a question. “My house is insulated with books and dust,” she would joke. Betty loved to ride in the car—although she never drove—and visit her children and grandchildren, of whom she was very proud. She also enjoyed leading workshops for parents and speaking at homeschool conferences.
Our sympathy and prayers are with Betty’s husband of 64 years, Joe, and their three children and 13 grandchildren.
While we grieve Betty’s passing, we gratefully remember her many years of service to homeschooling families and the encouragement she brought with her wherever she went. And we are glad she is rejoicing in the presence of the Savior whose love was so evident in the way that she lived.