Betty M. Lashley, 97, Watertown

WATERTOWN, NY —  Betty M. Lashley with daughter, April M. Bender and Son-in-Law, Alfred T. Bender, sang together as she crossed over into glory on Jan. 25, 2022, approaching age 97.

The last words she tried to sing were: “Oh how I love Jesus.” And she did, more than anyone we know.

If you knew her, you knew that she knew that Jesus had saved her from all hurt and death and was taking her to be with Him in Heaven and she wanted you there too! That’s where she is and still loving Jesus!

Born in Black River, 1925, she was the last living child of Frank C. and Anna Alma Westcott, predeceased by her older sister, Norma Mandich and husband John Mandich; younger sisters Marjorie Day and husband Charles Day and Eleanor Westcott; and brother Frank Westcott and wife Sylvia Westcott. She was also predeceased by her husband of over 69 years, Rev. Walter J. Lashley and her only grandchild, Alfred T. M. Bender.

In addition to her only child, April M. Bender and Son-in-Law Alfred T. Bender, she is survived by all her beloved nieces and nephews: Terry Mandich and wife Pari; Mike Mandich and wife Janet; Rebecca Askins; Warren Day and wife Tammy; Jeff Westcott and wife Concetta; Kathy Westcott, and Dale Westcott and all of their blessed children and grandchildren.

A bookkeeper by trade, for many years, she and her husband owned a dental lab business in Watertown, NY. They ventured into building two homes together on Gifford Street Road.

Betty served at Watertown Assembly of God on Haley Street in children, women’s, and music ministries before being called into full time ministry with her husband in 1967. God blessed her with a beautiful voice that praised Him through to her last breath on this side of glory!

Selling all their possessions, they moved from Watertown, NY to Woodbourne, NY. There, as true servant hearts and leaders, they built a church and helped share the life-saving message of Jesus with hundreds. Betty was very involved in women, teaching, and music ministries and served as the church treasurer. In 1979 they moved to Ellenville, NY to start a new Church, retiring in 1987 to Colton, NY, to be with family.

As health began to fail, Betty moved to assisted living at Samaritan Summit Village in Watertown, NY, in 2013 and lived there until her passing at Carthage Center for Rehabilitation and Nursing where she had transferred for rehabilitation. The family wants to express their sincere appreciation for the loving care she received from the dedicated and loving assisted living team on floor two of Samaritan Summit Village (Patty); the devotion and loving care of everyone at Samaritan Hospital Pain Clinic; the diligence and expert care of the teams at Dr. Kellogg’s (Ann) and Dr. Willis (Kate); and Carthage Center.

Betty loved studying the Bible, playing the piano, singing, camping, decorating, and making crafts for others, especially for children. She would like to share with you and have you experience one of her life verses from Isaiah 41:10: “Do not fear; I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” And He will, if you believe!

A celebration of life will be held in the spring.

Arrangements are with the Reed & Benoit Funeral Home, Watertown.

Online condolences may be made online at

In lieu of flowers, Betty asked for donations to be sent to Mohawk Assembly of God for their youth activities: PO Box 339, Hogansburg, NY, 13655 (518.358.2456).