Cover photo for Ouida Carolyn Wells's Obituary
Ouida Carolyn Wells Profile Photo
1933 Carolyn Wells 2023

Ouida Carolyn Wells

July 23, 1933 — December 18, 2023

Farmville, VA

 

Ouida Carolyn Wells
July 23, 1933 - December 18, 2023

Ouida Carolyn Wells, the youngest child of the late Dr. Jere Asmond and Ouida Cox
Wells, was born on July 23, 1933, in Atlanta, Georgia. She was educated at Agnes Scott College
in Atlanta and continued to earn both a Masters Degree and PhD in Biology at Emory
University. She then received a postdoctoral fellowship at the Oak Ridge National Laboratories
in Tennessee. While in Oak Ridge a visiting professor from Longwood College mentioned to
Carolyn that their Biology Department had an opening and that she should apply. It was just that
informal and she could not have possibly known then how life-changing that casual decision
would be! In 1960 she accepted a position in the Biology Department at Longwood College(now
University), where she worked for the rest of her professional career. In her years at Longwood,
Carolyn served as a mentor for students, faculty, and staff members, who valued her wisdom,
intelligence, integrity, and her wry sense of humor. Her forty-year career was marked by a series
of groundbreaking achievements: she was the first woman to serve as Vice-President for
Academic Affairs and Dean of the College; she taught a class in the Fine Arts Department as an
award-winning photographer and was instrumental in founding the Longwood Center for the
Visual Arts. The endowed Bishop-Wells Internship at the LCVA bears her name. In 1999, a year
before her retirement, she was awarded the highest faculty honor of Board of Visitors
Distinguished Professor.
Before and after her retirement in 2000, Dr. Wells maintained a busy, active life by
throwing herself into numerous activities and projects within the Farmville community. She was
a longtime member of Farmville Presbyterian Church, serving many terms on the Session and
teaching an adult Sunday School class, for which she was always well prepared. Also a longtime
member of the Judith Randolph-Longwood Chapter of the DAR, Dr. Wells led many local
efforts, participated in state-wide governance, and served as Regent. In 2020 she was awarded
the NSDAR Community Service Award.
As a founding member of the Margaret Watson Bird Club, she organized and led the
local bird census and spoke to many Garden Clubs and other organizations on the topic of birds.
Carolyn was also a Master Gardener and a champion of many arts and culture organizations in
Southside Virginia, such as the Summer Garden Opera, and Virginia Children’s Book Festival.
Some of her happiest memories were of golf trips with her lifelong companion, Barbara.
They traveled widely, including many trips to Scotland to play the Old Course at St. Andrews.
Carolyn is preceded in death by her parents, brothers Jere A. Wells, Jr., George F. Wells
and Dr. Robert E. Wells, her sister Elena Wells Harrison and two nieces, Lucibeth Harrison
Nesbit and Elizabeth Ann Wells.

She is survived by Barbara B. Smith and nine nieces and nephews: Jere Elena Wells
Brands (Harold), Andrea Wells Miller, Linda Wells Carswell, Cathlean Harrison Coleman (Jon),
Jere Wells (Della), Robanne Harrison, Connie Harrison Phillips (Ernie), Tom Wells (Susan), and
Cathlean Wells Utzig (Carter). She also leaves behind fifteen great- nieces and nephews and
multiple great-great nieces and nephews. As important as family is, the countless friends,
colleagues and students whose lives Carolyn has touched for over seventy years are equally
loved and valued. There are scores of people grieving today.
The family requests that memorial contributions may be made to the Bishop-Wells
Endowment at Longwood University or the Judith Randolph-Longwood Chapter of the DAR, ℅
Margaret Atkins, 122 Fox Hill Road, Rice, Va 23966, or a charity of your choice.

Puckett Funeral Home is serving the family. www.puckettfh.com.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Ouida Carolyn Wells, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Wednesday, December 27, 2023

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Eastern time)

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Funeral Service

Thursday, December 28, 2023

1:00 - 2:00 pm (Eastern time)

Farmville Presbyterian Church

200 West Third Street, Farmville, VA 23901

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Interment

Thursday, December 28, 2023

2:15 - 3:15 pm (Eastern time)

Westview

VA

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