Madie Lee Carter Karstedt Ewing – Gulf Coast News Today


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Madie Lee Carter Karstedt Ewing, a native of Baker, Fla., and longtime resident of Montrose, Point Clear and Fairhope, passed away peacefully in the presence of family from complications of old age on May 16, 2021 at the age of 98 years. She will be remembered for her great love of sailing and as a benefactor of the Fairhope Yacht Club.

Mrs. Ewing was born to Frank Herbert Carter and Lois Franklin Carter. The Carter Family were from the Luverne, Ala., area and the Franklin Family were early day settlers of northern Okaloosa County, Fla. Mrs. Ewing's maternal great-great-grandfather Benjamin Franklin, Sr., was a Confederate Army soldier and land surveyor who later plotted out what is today Troy, Ala.

Mrs. Ewing grew-up in Baker, Fla., and graduated in 1940 from Baker High School. She attended the Assembly of God Church in Baker. Early in World War II, she married U.S. Army 1st Lt. Warren Karstedt whom she later divorced. Following World War II, Mrs. Ewing, while living in New Orleans, La., met John Sharpe Ewing, Jr., MD, a native of Vicksburg, Miss.

At the time, Dr. Ewing was a psychiatrist on the staff of the Ochsner Clinic in New Orleans. Mrs. Ewing and Dr. Ewing were later married in Mobile, where Dr. Ewing became the first psychiatrist on the staff of the University of South Alabama Medical School. They enjoyed a long and happy marriage ending when Dr. Ewing passed away on August 15, 1991.

Mrs. Ewing while residing at their bayside home in Montrose developed a great love of sailing on Mobile Bay that was to become a lifelong passion. Since in those days the Fairhope Yacht Club only admitted male members, Mrs. Ewing became a competitive sailor as her husband's spouse and then matched her skills against the very best of her male counterparts.

Mrs. Ewing started sailing in 1960 as a crew member on fish boat class vessels and became so proficient that the following year she represented Fairhope Yacht Club in the Lipton Regatta in New Orleans. At that point, Dr. Ewing purchased a Rhodes 19 design sailboat for her personal use. From then on, she and her husband moved up to larger cruising class vessels.

The year 1970 marked a high point for Mrs. Ewing and her husband when they won the Commodore H.S. Denniston Trophy in the Dauphin Island Race sailing a 34-foot Cal design boat. This was particularly thrilling as the award was for the best overall sailing in the entire fleet of approximately 100 sail boats. Dr. Ewing later was a chairman of the Dauphin Island Race Committee.

During her years racing sailboats, Mrs. Ewing won over 100 trophies. Many of them remain on display at the Fairhope Yacht Club as a testament to her passion for competitive sailing. Mrs. Ewing will also be remembered for her dedicated efforts over many years to encourage and instruct children in the art of sailing and to be an inspiration in particular to young women.

In a long and fruitful lifetime, Mrs. Ewing enjoyed duplicate and party bridge, theater arts, fine arts, golf, tennis, hunting, fishing and other outdoor activities. She also enjoyed fast automobiles, her first being a red 1942 Pontiac convertible and her last a 2005 Mercedes CLK 320 convertible that she drove in Fairhope up until near the end of her life.

Mrs. Ewing was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, four brothers, one sister, one half-brother and one half-sister. She was also preceded by her very dear friend and noted mermaid illustrator Marlin Griffin.

Mrs. Ewing is survived by her daughter Janet Ewing Anderson along with her granddaughters Jessica Anderson Martin (Thomas) and Jaclyn Whitney Anderson. She also leaves behind one great-granddaughter Edith Lee Martin.

Mrs. Ewing is also survived by her nephews Herbert Carter, Elvy Carter (Kathy) and Joseph Phelps Carter. Surviving nieces are Amanda Carter, Susan Bozeman (Charlie) and Reggie Carter Fokes. A special great nephew David Ashburn (Geralyn) also survives.

Cremation was by Wolfe-Bayview Funeral Home in Fairhope. After private family graveside services, Mrs. Ewing's ashes were interred alongside her husband in Montrose Cemetery. Mrs. Ewing, a lifelong dog lover, was accompanied into eternity with the ashes of Sweetie, her beloved miniature Schnauzer. A Celebration of Life event for her friends and family is planned at Fairhope Yacht Club on Sunday, June 27, 2021, from 3 to 5 pm.

Mrs. Ewing was a strong woman of the Old South who pioneered competitive sailing for women today. Sailboat racing was the best part of her long life. Her generous gift to the Fairhope Yacht Club insured its rebuilding following Hurricane Katrina. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in Mrs. Ewing's memory to the Fairhope Yacht Club Junior Sailing Program.

Cards of condolence may be addressed to: The Family of Mrs. Madie Ewing, Care/Of Wolfe-Bayview Funeral Home, 19698 South Greeno Road, Fairhope, AL 36532. Wolfe-Bayview will ensure that cards reach Mrs. Ewing's family.

Arrangements by Wolfe-Bayview Funeral Homes & Crematory, Inc. 19698 Greeno Road, Fairhope, 36532. 251-990-7775.

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