Beatrice's Story

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Beatrice Rose Anderson, age 95, of St Joseph, died January 15, 2018, at Mercy Hospital near Gold River, California, while visiting her younger daughter and son-in-law.
Bea was born in 1922 near Ottumwa, IA, marrying Arlo E. Anderson in 1946. Bea and Arlo lived in Ottumwa until 1968 before moving to Des Moines, IA. They later moved to Houston, TX, and St. Joseph, MO. She attended Ottumwa Heights College, Drake University, and went back to finish college at age 53 while she was working full-time, graduating from Missouri Western State University in 1976.
Bea taught business at Central High School in St. Joseph and at San Jacinto North College in Houston. In later years, she worked until age 82 with her older daughter and son-in-law as a tax accountant at Sunshine Electronic Display of St. Joseph. She was a member of the First Presbyterian Church in Ottumwa, and the First Presbyterian Church in St. Joseph, where she also served as a deacon.
Bea was preceded in death by her husband, Arlo, who died in 1999; parents, Hale and Bernice Chidester; sister and brother-in-law Barbara and Will Gullett; brother and sister-in-law Dorrell and Ileen Chidester; and sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Dorlene and Willis Oldt, grandson-in-law Craig Everly and great step- granddaughter, Jennifer Nelson.
Bea cared deeply about her family and stayed in touch with everyone through phone calls, text messages, colorful birthday emails, and travels across America. She is survived by her two daughters Thea Ide (Gordon) of St. Joseph, and Kristin Anderson Schewe (Bob) of Gold River, California; three granddaughters Whitney Ide, Laura Nelson (Tom), and Stephanie Everly; four great grandchildren Ridge Nelson, Kit Nelson, Jane Everly, and Liz Everly; and three step-great grandchildren Lindsey Duff (Cam), Mary Archer (Kyle), and Josh Nelson (Jill).
Also surviving are siblings Maxine Stackhouse (Bill) of Ottumwa, JoAnn Roemerman (Don) of Lake Ozark, MO, and Larry Chidester (Janet) of Sun Lakes, AZ; nieces and nephews Sherry Greenfield (Dennis), Stephanie Samuelson, Deb Hearn (Dave), Paula Carroll (Mike), Julie Wetrich (Tom), Jeff Roemerman, Jill Scott (Jeff), Mike Chidester (Nina LaPick), Lee Ann Peabody, Wes Gullett (Deb), Jon Gullett (Claudia), Ken Oldt, Delores Smith (Steve), Ron Oldt (Char) and Nancy Stansberry (Mike); and long-time friend, Dick Thomas.
Famous for her homemade rolls and pies, Bea loved cooking and baking for her family, visiting with her neighbors and friends, teaching and attending school into her 80's, and being productive - in both her work and leisure. Her passions included golfing (particularly in her and Arlo's annual trips to the Colorado Rockies), playing bridge, dancing, shopping, and keeping close track of the daily news, especially the latest business happenings.
Bea was an extremely happy person. Sunday School and church were very important to her. She secretly helped a lot of lost and lonely people who crossed her path, and she always found the good in whomever or whatever. She adapted well to change and new situations, witnessed by her choosing to live with her daughters and sons-in-law the last couple of years of her life. Bea was so fun to have around that both couples lobbied for more time with her.
Bea, who often told her kids that she'd "had the perfect life," will be memorialized on Saturday, February 3 at First Presbyterian Church, 301 N. Seventh Street, St. Joseph, beginning with a Visitation at 9:30 AM. followed by a service at 11:00 AM. Graveside service and interment will be April 28 in Ottumwa, IA.
Memorial donations in Bea's name may be made to Second Harvest, Open Door Food Kitchen, Noyes Home, Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art, or the Goodman Theatre.
Published on January 23, 2018
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