Betty Jo Culberson


Personal and Family Information

Betty was born on 7 Aug 1937 in Crossett, Arkansas, the daughter of unknown parents.

She died on 19 Feb 2017 in Pulaski County, Arkansas.

Her husband was James Kitle Davis, who she married on 24 DEC 1955 in First Baptist Church, Augusta, Arkansas. Their three known children were Robert Kitle (1957-2009), Jerry Clyde (1961-2006) and Thomas Floyd (1962-?).


Birth7 AUG 1937
Place: Crossett, Arkansas
Death19 FEB 2017
Place: Pulaski County, Arkansas
Address: Baptist Hospital , Alzheimer’s Disease
Census22 APR 1940
Place: Nettleton, Craighead County, Arkansas
Age: 3 born Ark
Address: dwelling 217 Betty with parents Earl 27, Jewel 23 and brother Douglas age 7
Burial25 FEB 2017
Place: Lincoln County, Arkansas
Address: Butler/Pleasant Hill Cemetery, Garnett Rd Star City, Ark findagrave 176662625 links to father and sister, two sons
Place: Lincoln County, Arkansas
Address: with son Thomas 2069 Cane Creek Rd Home (870) 628-1603
Place: Mississippi
Address: University of Southern Mississippi Doctorate in Education (English)


Education1955Class of 1955
Address: Laura Conner High School Augusta, Arkansas
See Note 3


Jimmy and Jo...


Note 1

From: Jim Beard To: Hallie Beard

Friday, June 05, 2009 5:40 AM Subject: Re: Info hunting

Jimmy Davis graduated in 1953.  He is deceased, not sure when or cause, but has been several years. 

He married Jo Culbertson - email addy is: she is retired now I think, but had taught on the college level and has a Doctorate degree.

I don't know Mary Linda Fellows, or at least do not recall the name.  I seem to recall a Mary Linda, but Fellows was not the last name that I want to associate it with.


Note 2

Betty Jo Culbertson Davis, August 7, 1937 - February 19, 2017

Dr. Jo was born in Crossett, Arkansas on Aug. 7, 1937 to the late Clyde and Eugenia Moseley Culbertson. She and her sister, Peggy (Carter), moved with their parents to Star City and Gould, AR, where she accepted Christ as her personal Lord and Savior at Landmark Missionary Baptist Church.

After her junior year in high school, she and her parents moved to Augusta, AR, where she graduated from August High School in 1955. She met James Kitle Davis, but she moved to Memphis, TN to attend Draughons Jr. College. James (Jimmy) followed her and they were married on Christmas Eve in 1955. While in Memphis, she gave birth to Robert Kitle Davis in November, 1957, and Jerry Clyde Davis in February, 1961. The family moved to Jackson, MS, where in September, 1962 they completed their family with the birth of a third son, Thomas Floyd Davis. The family joined Parkway Baptist Church, and over the years were instrumental in creating the bus ministry, Children's Church, and the Sunday morning television program Impact as churches began to reach out into the community for those unable to attend services. There, each of her sons accepted Christ as their own personal Lord and Savior. She also returned to college at Mississippi State in Clinton, where she graduated with her BS in history education and started her teaching career at Mississippi Baptist High School.

In 1976, Jim died, and with Thom and Jerry, she moved back to Memphis. There, the family joined Elliston Baptist Church and she became a "legend" at Elliston Baptist Academy, where her sons went to High School. She also taught at Evangelical Christian School, and received her Master's degree in English Education at Memphis State University. From there, she went on to the University of Southern Mississippi and earned her Doctorate in Education (English).

Her sons had gone on to the US Army (Robert), US Marine Corps and later, Army (Jerry), and US Navy/Marine Corps (Thom). With her Doctorate in hand, she moved to Walnut Ridge, AR, where she was an Associate Professor of English at Williams Baptist College. While there, she founded the WBC chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, the International English Honors Society, and won the hearts of all she met. She was a member of Walnut Ridge First Baptist Church.

Just before full retirement, she moved "home" to Star City, and took an Assistant Professor position at the University of Arkansas, Pine Bluff, to be near her sister, Peggy. She also moved her letter to First Baptist Church, Star City. While she had a full, rich life, life took some tragic turns. She lost her sister and her two oldest sons, Robert and Jerry, and three homes due to various twists and turns in her roller coaster of life, including a tornado and a house fire. She finally settled in Dumas, AR with her youngest son, Thom, who was a high school English teacher at Dumas High School. She moved her letter to Dumas First Baptist Church. And then she was stricken with Alzheimer's Disease to which she finally succumbed at Baptist Hospital in Little Rock on February 19, 2017.

She was universally loved, and will be missed, but her family, Thom and grandsons Nathan Kitle Davis and Christopher James Davis (Robert), and Zachary Thomas Davis (Jerry) rejoice that she has found her way into the arms of her Savior, Jesus Christ. Her final appearance center stage was at Butler (Pleasant Hill) Cemetery on Saturday, February 25, 2017, a small affair for family and friends officiated by Bro. Marcus Rogers of First Baptist Church, Star City. Any memorials may be sent as gifts to English Department or General Scholarship fund at Williams Baptist College, Walnut Ridge, AR. She wanted her last words to everyone to be what had become her mantra as a mother, grandmother, teacher, professor, and friend: "You're beautiful, and I love you!"

Arrangements by Griffin Funeral Service in Star City. Online guestbook at

Note 3

Jo eventually completed PHD and worked at a community college in Walnut Ridge, Ark? for a while.