Carolyn Marie Ashton



Our beloved mother and grandmother and great grandmother, Carolyn, 97, of Jacksonville Beach, Florida, passed away in the early hours of March 6, 2024.

Born June 6, 1926 in Asheville, North Carolina, Carolyn was the sixth of seven children of Oscar Francis and Margaret Whittemore Blankenship Sr. She grew up in nearby Fairview, N.C., with her three sisters and brothers: Marjorie Miller, Freneau, Francis, Olin, Blaine Huntley, and Martha. She is preceded in death by the latter, as well as her first husband Thomas G. Ellis Jr., second Arthur Richardson and third Thomas Ashton.

She was the 1944 valedictorian and a graduate of Fairview High School. Carolyn attended Western Carolina University and graduated in 1948 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Education and Business. She served as President of the student body and participated in chorus, drama, and the women’s basketball team.

In the 1960s Carolyn taught at Duncan U. Fletcher High School in Jacksonville Beach. She was an active member of the First Baptist Church of Jacksonville Beach and Sunday school teacher, Ponte Vedra Palm Valley and Fletcher PTAs, a Junior Women’s Club President and Regional Director, The Beaches Fine Arts Society, The Ribault Garden Club, and a member of the Ponte Vedra Inn and Club where she loved playing on the tennis team. Real estate became a successful second career at Century 21 and Ponte Vedra Club Realty where she consistently earned entry into the Multi-Million-Dollar Sales Club before retiring in 2002. She had resided in Jacksonville Beach since 1954.

Mrs. Ashton is survived by her two sons and their families: Thomas Ellis III and wife Deborah Mason and their son Drew; and Tim Ellis and wife Teresa and their daughter Ashley and husband Zoiner Tejada and daughter Whitney and husband Brian Boudreaux and their three children Elise, Kyle and Emily.

Carolyn’s ashes will be interned alongside her parents and siblings at Cane Creek Cemetery in her childhood hometown, Fairview N.C.