Dr. Lena Dula Mayberry Engstrom died on Monday, November 6, 2017, in a local hospital.
Dr. Engstrom, retired professor of English at Chattanooga State Technical Community College, was a native of North Carolina. Born in Morganton, NC, she attended Chesterfield Elementary School and Morganton High School. She did her undergraduate work at Gardner-Webb College and Western Carolina University, graduating with high honors with degrees in English and Education. She earned her doctorate at NC State University and did further studies at Duke, UNC- Chapel Hill, Harvard, Oxford, and Cambridge.
Her academic honors included a Wall Street Journal Scholarship in Journalism to UNC-Chapel Hill, a Reynolds Fellowship for Teaching Gifted to Western Carolina University, and an internship in Community College Administration to NC State University.
She taught public school in three counties in North Carolina (Burke, Caldwell, and Rutherford); taught English at Isothermal Community College in Spindale, NC; and English and Humanities at Chattanooga State.
At various times she served as a consultant to the National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities, Bicentennial Commission, Appalachian Regional Commission, several state Humanities Councils, and the Boy Scouts.
She had been president of the NC Folklore Society (two terms); Rutherfordton Woman’s Club; the NC Council of Officers for Resource Development; and the Chattanooga State Faculty. For more than three decades she was an agent for the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
She was a member of several academic and professional organizations, including Alpha Phi Sigma, Phi Beta Kappa, and Delta Kappa Gamma.
She is survived by her husband, Col. Dale Engstrom of Soddy Daisy; a daughter, Lynn (David) Baynard of Forest City, NC; a son, James (Susan McGuire) Mayberry of Soddy Daisy, TN; three grandchildren, six great-grandchildren; and two brothers, Forest Dula and Ray Dula of Morganton, NC.
Memorial services will be held at the North Chapel on Saturday, Nov. 11, at 1:30 p.m. with family and close friends officiating.
An additional Celebration of Life service will be held in Rutherford County, NC at a later date.
She will be laid to rest at Chattanooga National Cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Lena Mayberry Engstrom Endowed Scholarship Fund. Please mail your gifts to The Fund for Western Annual Giving, Western Carolina University, 1 University Drive, 201 HF Robinson Bldg., Cullowhee, NC 28723.
Arrangements are by the North Chapel of Chattanooga Funeral Home, Crematory & Florist, 5401 Highway 153, Hixson, TN 37343.