Fleeta Ruth Gross, 98, was born on July 28, 1923, in Huntsville, Missouri, to Roy and Rosetta (Pettigrew) Smith. She made her transition peacefully on the morning of Sunday, October 10, at Valley View Health and Rehabilitation in Moberly, Missouri.
Fleeta married the love of her life, Arthur Gross, on June 10, 1944. They were blessed with three children: Arthur Jr., Rose Ellen and Jeffery.
Fleeta’s survivors include her daughter Rose, son Jeffery, daughter-in-law Connie, sister Shirley Ford, sister-in-law Sharon Gooch and “son in Christ” Howard Glasgow. She is also survived by 10 grandchildren, 39 great-grandchildren, two great-great grandchildren and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, four brothers, her son Arthur Jr. and two great-grandchildren.
Fleeta graduated in 1941 from Lincoln School. She was baptized at an early age at Pilgrim Rest Baptist Church in Moberly. And she later became a longtime member of Second Missionary Baptist Church in Moberly, where she was a deaconess, Sunday School teacher, choir member, usher, and served in numerous organizations.
She was passionate about her faith and her love of children. She worked at Community Daycare in Moberly and the Moberly Area Community College Daycare, teaching children and loving them as her own. She combined both her passions over several summers when she chaperoned church kids at Camp Inlow.
She served as president of the Woman’s Missionary Union or WMU at Second Baptist in Moberly. Her WMU duties also led her to work as youth director for the North Missouri Missionary Baptist District.
Outside of church, Fleeta was a member of the fraternal organizations, Order of the Eastern Star and the Daughters of Isis.
Fleeta was a stylish woman throughout her years -- known for her collection of elegant dresses, hats and jewelry.
She also collected angel figurines and possessed an impressive assortment of them. Her choice of hobby was fitting, since family and friends saw her as their angel on Earth.
At church, Fleeta never hesitated to rise to her feet during devotion and profess her love of God and share examples of how He impacted her life. One of her favorite songs to belt out as she gave her testimony was “I Believe I’ll Testify.” She loved to recount her life’s journey whenever she had the chance, and she’s undoubtedly in heaven testifying, singing and doing her signature shimmy.
Words of comfort and support were shared with the family at a visitation followed by services honoring Ms Fleeta’s life at the Second Missionary Baptist Church. Committal prayer and burial took place in the Memorial Park Cemetery.