Preoteasa Elizabeth “Betty Jane” Limbeson, wife of the late Priest John Limbeson, fell asleep in the Lord on Wednesday, January 17, 2013.
Preoteasa Betty was born in Cleveland, OH on August 12, 1925 to the late Vasily and Helen Russ, members of Saint Mary Romanian Orthodox Church. In 1946, she married John M. Limbeson who, after completing his military service as a World War II US Army officer, was employed in the aerospace industry. They were the parents of a son, John Mitchell “Mitch,” and daughter, Merry Ann.
Throughout her life, Betty loved raising funds for various Orthodox church projects and charities. One of her last efforts in this regard involved raising funds for the construction of the wall for the boy’s home in Guadalupe, Mexico, for Romanian Orthodox Project Mexico. Eventually, Betty became known as and was called the “wall lady.”
In 1980, her husband was ordained to the diaconate in the Orthodox Church in America’s Romanian Episcopate by the late Archbishop Valerian and assigned to Los Angeles’ Holy Trinity Church. He also assisted at Saint Luke Antiochian Orthodox Church, Garden Grove, CA. After his ordination to the priesthood by Bishop [now Archbishop] Nathaniel in 1985, the Limbesons planted Saint Ann Church in nearby Pomona, CA, where Preoteasa Betty eagerly became a full partner to Father John in serving the Church. After a few years at Saint Anne’s, Father John was assigned as parish priest of Saints Constantine and Elena Church, Indianapolis, IN, where Preoteasa Betty served as godmother and sponsor to many who were baptized into the Church. She accepted this responsibility with great love and adored her new godchildren.
After Father John’s retirement in 1997, the Limbesons relocated to Laguna Woods, CA. Preoteasa Betty relocated to northern California after Father John’s repose on August 19, 2005. In time, she moved to the Saint John of Kronstadt Care Center, Castro Valley, CA, operated by the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia. At the center, she quickly became part of the “family,” making daily visits to other residents, many of whom were alone. She was deeply loved, and she returned the love by always doing what she could to bring happiness to others and attending the center’s twice-monthly Liturgies, at which she always received Holy Communion. Five days before her repose, she received the Holy Gifts for the last time. Two days before entering eternal life, she received Holy Unction, celebrated by Archpriest Stefan Pavlenko, Burlinghame, CA, and Priests Peter Salmas and John Kocolas, Belmont, CA.
In addition to Father John and her parents, Preoteasa Betty was predeceased by her sister and brother, Violet and Ozzie. She is survived by her beloved children, John “Mitch” [Kathy] and Merry Ann [Serge] Lukianoff; three grandchildren, Natalie Loukianoff, Kati [Victor] Sarbu, and and Alisha; and great grandchildren Lily-Ana and Christian Sarbu.
Funeral services will be celebrated at Saint Mark Antiochian Orthodox Church, Irvine, CA on Wednesday, January 23 at 11:00 a.m. Interment will take place at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, January 26, at Holy Transfiguration Monastery Cemetery, Ellwood City, PA, following the celebration of the Divine Liturgy.
Donations in Preoteasa Betty’s memory may be made to the Romanian Orthodox Project Mexico, Holy Transfiguration Monastery, or an Orthodox church of the donor’s choosing.
May Preoteasa Betty’s memory be eternal!