Betty Plum Wiebers
LANARK - Betty Louise Plum Wiebers, 85, of Lanark died Monday, Nov. 13, 2006, at her home.
She was born on April 13, 1921, near Polo to Wilbur and Edna Kuhn Plum. She was baptized at West Branch Church of the Brethren where her grandfather, Samuel Plum, was the minister. In 1941, she married Lawrence Wiebers in Oak Park.
Betty graduated from Amundson High School in Chicago in 1939. Following graduation, she worked as an X-ray technician in Chicago. After marriage, she moved to Watertown, N.Y., where Lawrence served the war effort working for New York Airbrake. It was then Betty began her lifelong quest for perfect pie crust, a goal she not only attained but taught to many students.
Betty and Lawrence moved to Lanark in 1948, where she was instrumental in promoting the implementation of the first kindergarten class in the Lanark School District.
She also enjoyed camping with her family and friends, and fishing and hunting trips to Canada and the Northwest. She enjoyed traveling to Great Britain, Germany, Mexico, Spain, Denmark and Morocco. During the winter, Betty and Lawrence loved spending time in Florida, visiting the Gulf Coast beaches, enjoying fresh shrimp and playing cards every evening. Betty loved to play and teach bridge, and was an excellent player well into her eighties in spite of crippling arthritis.
Above all, Betty was a reader. She was an excellent wordsmith and enjoyed challenging games of Scrabble which she usually won. She was also known for what her husband lovingly described as a “razor-sharp tongue” and a “lead foot,” able to “lay a patch” of rubber while backing out of the garage.
She instilled in her children a love of music and harmony and loved to sing old hymns she had learned from her grandfather. She was an excellent swimmer, and made certain her children were also.
A lifelong Democrat, she was forced to admit that, as a toddler, she was once “extracted” from the Rock River by Ronald Reagan when he was a lifeguard at Lowell Park in Dixon.
Betty was a wonderful cook and confirmed “chocoholic.” (Her last meal was chocolate cake.) She delighted in her many grandchildren, spoiling them with a fully stocked candy drawer. Betty loved to collect antiques and spent years studying and researching them. For years, one of her favorite past times was going to antique shows and shops across the country.
She is survived by her four daughters, Laurie Ann (Ambrose) Gaines of Placida, Fla., Jennifer (Steve) Schneider of Scottsdale, Ariz., Amy (Robert) Ruch of Lanark, and Melissa (Brad) Finifrock of Cherry Valley; her dear friend, Ferris Walker; her devoted caretaker, Annie; her 12 grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.
Betty was preceded in death by her husband; her baby brother, Sherwood; and her beloved sister, Lois.
Memorial services will be held at 11 a.m. Friday at Lanark United Methodist Church.
Arrangements were handled by the Russell-Frank Funeral Home in Lanark.