Ella Perry Foster Zarr

Published 2:49 pm Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Ella Perry Foster Zarr, 77, a native of Greenville, Alabama and a long-time resident of Bay Minette, Alabama, died November 19, 2011, at home after a lengthy illness. She was preceded in death by her parents, Walter H Foster and William P Foster, and a daughter, Bridget Zarr. She is survived by her husband of 56 years, Robert “Bob” Zarr, Sr. who gave her many years of tender care which allowed her to remain at home during her decade-long battle with lung disease. She is also survived by 3 daughters, Christi (Nick) King of Bay Minette, Jody (Chris) Williams of Montgomery, and Katrina (Greg) Wright of Dalton, GA., and one son, Bobby Zarr of Bay Minette. She is survived by 12 grandchildren, Caroline Page, Bucky (Mandy)Page, Derek Ustruck, Nicole (John) Reis, Emily-Anne Williams, Lacey Williams, Madison Williams, Carter McMillan, Will McMillan, Trace Zarr, Bryce Zarr and Payt Zarr, and 4 great-grandchildren, Cameron Long, William Long, Jacob Page and Lauren Reis. She also loved her many care-givers over the years, Mary, Geraldine, Pauline, Ebony and Chantelle of Bay Nursing, nurse Jessica, aide Enita, and the rest of the caring staff at Spring Hill Home Health and Hospice, and Brian of Eastern Shore Physical Therapy.

Perry attended Auburn University and was working in Mobile when she met Bob, a pilot in the Air Force. After six months they were wed on July 18, 1955. Their married life was filled with travels across the US, Asia and Europe. In the early years, she enjoyed being an officer’s wife, a mother, a Girl Scout leader and a Red Cross volunteer. Later, she spent 29 years working with her husband in their family Ford dealership, after his retirement from the military.

During this time, she began researching her family genealogy and discovered a love of history in general. She was a member of Baldwin County Historical Society, Butler County Historical Society, Alabama Historical Society, the Fort Mims Restoration Association, Daughters of the American Revolution and the United Daughters of the Confederacy. She was a former board member of CAREHouse, a child advocacy center. She served on the Faulkner State Community College President’s Advisory Board. She was a long-time member of Bay River Art Guild. She was also an active member of First United Methodist Church in Bay Minette, where she served in numerous capacities, her favorite being church Historian. During the research of her church, she learned that many of the Methodist churches in the county shared a history, so she expanded her research to include all Baldwin County Methodist churches. Her book recounting that history,  Here I Am, Send Me, was published in 1996 with all proceeds from the sale of her book going to the Building Fund at her church. Perry also enjoyed arts and crafts of all kinds and eventually opened a small shop, The Daisy Barrel, which she ran for several years. Her love of flowers eventually led her to begin painting them and she was known throughout the county for her beautiful floral oil paintings.

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Perry’s wake was held Sunday, November 20, 2011, at First United Methodist Church in Bay Minette and the funeral service will be Monday, November 21, 2011, at 11:00am, also at the church. Although she loved flowers, her family asks that memorial gifts be made to the building fund of the First United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 338, Bay Minette, AL 36507.