Ferris Lou Stokes Wood, of Clinton, died on June 27, 2020. A lifelong Clintonian, she was born in the family home on March 30, 1937 to Sara Elizabeth Cunningham Stokes and Earl Montford Stokes, both of whom pre-deceased her.
She attended Clinton schools and at Clinton High School, met the love of her life, David Lynn Wood. She was a CHS cheerleader and he was a star basketball player, making a perfect couple then and for their entire lives. They both graduated from Clinton High School and remained big sports fans. Lynn predeceased her almost nine years ago to the day.
Mrs. Wood worked as a teaching assistant in the Clinton City School system for 37 years – she started there when her children were in elementary school, so she was always a presence not only in the lives of her own children but also their friends; and as time went on, she knew the children of those same childhood friends. Lifetime friendships were formed with her colleagues and they had many good times – not only at school. Halloween was a favorite holiday, as hundreds of school children (and former school children) would come by the house to show off their costumes, check out her Halloween sweatshirt and just visit with her, which she loved.
She shared her love of reading and of animals with her three children, had the most beautiful handwriting and was the first to volunteer to care for someone in need, especially for her family, whom she loved beyond measure. She was proud of her Clinton heritage and always advocated for education, tolerance, compassion, kindness and equality – values she felt were central to living a good life.
Mrs. Wood is survived by her daughters, Julie Wood (Matthew Busch) of Raleigh, NC and Amy Wood of Clinton, and her son, David Wood of Columbia, TN as well as special family friends Emily and David Ott and grandchildren Vance, Evan, Lelah and Paul. She is also survived by her sister Lyndall Ridenour and brother-in-law Roger Ridenour of Gatlinburg, niece Lea Ellen Ridenour Agee (John) and nephew Darren Ridenour (Tina) and great nieces and nephews as well as her sister-in-law Huanne Wood Lehto and nieces Vicki Courtney and Claudia Cross. Her brother Tom Stokes predeceased her.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to Memorial United Methodist Church, the animal shelter of your choice or The Education Foundation for Clinton City and Anderson County Schools.
A memorial service will be held at a future date. Holley Gamble Funeral Home in Clinton is in charge of all arrangements. holleygamble.com