OBITUARY

Bessie M Hetrick

September 3, 1922November 24, 2013

Bessie Adeline Miles Hetrick died November 24, 2013. She was born September 3, 1922 in Oakland (AKA Distant), PA., daughter of Fannie Willison Miles and John Furman Miles, Sr. She graduated from Michigan State University in 1968 with a Masters of Education. On September 12, 1940 Bessie married the love of her life, Bernerd Gale Hetrick, who predeceased her in 1987. She is survived by her three children: daughter, Myrna Jean Myers; son, Kim Bretton Hetrick and his partner, Anna Steffan; and daughter, Tricia, and son-in-law, Roy Salazar. Bessie is also survived by her grandson, Daniel Hetrick; granddaughter, Holly, and grandson-in-law, Paul Markel; granddaughter, Elspeth Hetrick; granddaughter, Jennifer, and grandson-in-law, Bo Spencer; grandson, Christopher Salazar, and fiancé, Mikki Church; grandson, Jonathon (JJ) Myers; and four great grandchildren. The foundation of Bessie’s life was her faith, which was demonstrated in prayer and service. Bessie tirelessly served alongside her husband, Gale, in his ministry with the Church of God in Michigan. As a pastor’s wife and church member, Bessie devoted many joyful years of service to the Lord especially in the area of Christian education. Teaching children was Bessie’s passion. Children fortunate enough to have her as a teacher loved her and were inspired by her dedication to their success. Bessie loved her role as a teacher and always believed that she was deeply blessed by the relationships she shared with her students, their parents, and co-workers. Bessie retired from Okemos Public Schools having taught at Cornell and Wardcliff Elementary schools. Once “retired,” Bessie taught elementary education, secondary education, and served as curriculum director at Triple C School in Georgetown, Grand Cayman (British West Indies). During retirement, she also volunteered for Capitol Area Literacy Coalition, after-school reading programs in the Lansing School District, and Pennway Church of God. A celebration of Bessie’s life and faith will be held Tuesday, November 26 at Pennway Church of God. They will receive friends at 12:00 Noon, and the service will follow at 1:00 PM. The family is being served by Gorsline Runciman Funeral Homes, Lansing Chapel. Condolences and memories may be shared with the family at www.grlansing.com

Services

  • Visitation Tuesday, November 26, 2013
  • Funeral Tuesday, November 26, 2013
REMEMBERING

Bessie M Hetrick

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Christa Robinson

December 7, 2013

I was the elementary student who gifted Mrs. Hetrick with a tomato. I submitted before signing my name. Condolences to the family.

December 7, 2013

Mrs. Hetrick was one of my elementary school teachers. As a student I saved the biggest, juiciest tomato I could find for her from my neighbor's garden as a gift. I was sad when she retired from teaching at our school. It is nice to learn what she did with the rest of her life outside her career. As a child, it did not even occur to me that she had a given name, we always knew her as Mrs. Hetrick, and that is how I will remember her. She has done much with her life. May she rest in peace.

Chuck & Shirley Reed

November 27, 2013

We were sorry to learn that your mother had died. We remember her steadfastness and pleasant disposition as she worked to serve her Lord. She was an influence to many and we admired her for her faith and ability to teach it to others.

Kim Bretton Hetrick

November 27, 2013

My Mother was a good friend, as well as the best Mom a person could wish for. I will miss her very much, every day. I am comforted in thinking that she may now, at last, be rejoining our Dad, who she loved and missed so much.

Roy & Betty Murry

November 26, 2013

Dear Myrna, Kim, Tricia and families,
We had your mother for a Sunday School teacher when we first came to Pennway.
She was an inspiration and wonderful role model. She was perfect for her role as "First Lady of the Church of God in Michigan."
We are so grateful to her for tutoring our grandson one summer which really was a big help for him.
She was a lovely lady and had a beautiful soul.
May the love of God, family and friends
help to bring you comfort and peace.
With our love and prayers.

Annette (Keck) Foster

November 26, 2013

Tricia and family,
I was saddened to read of the passing of your mother! If I had read it first thing this morning, we would have been to her service today! So sorry we missed it, Tricia! Jayne and I are thinking of you and your family. May God Bless you all!

Mary Hetrick

November 26, 2013

I met Bessie as a teenager when her son was one of my dearest friends...she always invited the lot of us to dinner if we stayed too long and managed to stretch the food to manage. Later, as I married her son, I became part of her family and learned so much from her about life, love and happiness. She had a gift for large gatherings, making all of us welcome at her bountiful table full of good food and lots of hot coffee. Sunday nights were often found sharing special pies or desserts after evening service. She did not preach openly but lived a prayerful life, walking her faith in the way she lived and served her Lord. She went home to Gale on a Sunday, a day that was always set aside for her family. I will miss her.

Beth Schmaltz

November 26, 2013

I am inspired that despite an initial no to her request to join the Peace Corps in the Philippines; Aunt Bessie did not give up, and got a yes to teach in Grand Cayman, and she even went back at their request and wrote a school curriculum. I also enjoy the story of how Uncle Gale when dating, visited her at her parents, and on the way home was so tired, he stopped and slept on a neighbor's porch, and when he arrived home, his mom greeted him without asking questions, but warned him to get upstairs to his room quietly, and not to wake his dad, or let him know that he had been out all night. And of course we enjoyed all those Thanksgiving meals she cooked, especially with all the home grown vegetables on the farm.

November 26, 2013

Holly, Paul and family,
You are in our thoughts and prayers during this time of loss.
Pine Rest Information Systems

Steph

November 26, 2013

For Bessie's family at this sad time.