Billie Jean King's mother dies at 91

NEW YORK -- Betty Moffitt, the mother of tennis great Billie Jean King and former major league pitcher Randy Moffitt, died Friday in Prescott, Ariz. She was 91.

She died at home with her children by her side, King's publicist told The Associated Press.

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Billie Jean King's mother died Friday at age 91. King said Wednesday she wouldn't attend the Sochi opening ceremony because of her mother's health.

King announced Wednesday that she would not attend the opening ceremony of the Sochi Olympics with the U.S. delegation because of her mother's failing health.

King described her mother as a good swimmer and dancer who helped the tennis prodigy remain balanced with piano lessons and school work.

Betty Jerman was born on May 26, 1922, in Taft, Calif. She married Bill Moffitt and raised their two children in Long Beach, Calif., where they lived for more than 40 years. They were married 65 years.

At King's 60th birthday party in 2003 in Beverly Hills, Calif., the dance floor cleared when the couple twirled to Glenn Miller's big-band era hit, "In the Mood."

Bill Moffitt died in 2006, the year the U.S. tennis center in New York, site of the US Open, was renamed for King. Betty Moffitt attended the renaming ceremony with her daughter.

Private services are planned. In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial contributions to Hospice Family Care, 100 E. Sheldon Street, Suite 100, Prescott, AZ 86301.

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