Viola Strickland-Cross died May 23 at Southampton Hospital at the age of 85.
She was born Nov. 1, 1925, in Roanoke, Va., to James and Sarah Strickland and graduated from Riverhead High School in 1943. In 1953, she married Harvey Cain Sr., with whom she had three children.
After Mr. Cain’s death, she married Emmett Cross Jr. in 1964, and they moved to New York. She graduated in 1961 from the Albert Einstein School of Nursing and worked at Riverhead Nursing Home until her retirement.
Ms. Strickland-Cross attended Liberty Bible College in Virginia and received her Evangelist license. She was a member of First Baptist Church of Cutchogue, where she served on the usher and trustee boards, the nursing unit and the floral committee. She was superindendent of the church Sunday school and president of its Missionary Board. She helped organize the Crusade for Christ, the pre-Thanksgiving Day program and the Good Friday candlelight service.
She belonged to Cutchogue Homemakers and, according to family, prayed daily for the sick, sent them cards and visited or called them.
Predeceased by her son Ronald Cain, Ms. Strickland-Cross is survived by her children, Reginald Cain of Central Islip and Vanessa Langhorn of Riverhead; her brothers, Robuster, of Arizona, and Herman, of Virginia; and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
A service was held May 27 at First Baptist Church of Cutchogue, with the Rev. Cornelius Fulford officiating. Interment was at Calverton National Cemetery. Arrangements were in the care of Seay Memorial Chapel in Riverhead.