Peterson, Bette Rae, Lifetime Master Coordinator, our Mom, Grandma and Great Grandma, went to be with the Lord on August 13, 2011, from her own bed, in her own home, only a few weeks after the passing of her honey, Hewey, husband of 67 years.
Dad found our loving mother in 1941 in the little town of Blooming Prairie, Minnesota. A poor country farm boy from Ellendale, Minnesota, he captured the heart and hand of Miss Bette Rae Oswald, the homecoming queen that year of Blooming Prairie. Home of the Blooming Prairie Blossoms, “Go Blossoms.”
As her kids we can only imagine what it must have been like for Mom to bring this skinny poor farm kid home to meet our eight Oswald Uncles. Uncles Earl, Bud, Harvey, Bob, Tommy and Otto, we always just knew Uncle Harrison as Ozzy. These were not your farm kids like Dad, these were city kids… from downtown Blooming Prairie, where Grandpa owned “Oswald’s” the local grocery store, big time, at the time.
Married two years later in October 1943 during the Second World War, with Dad still in the Navy. Two years after that with Dad stationed in Corpus Christi, Texas Mom gave birth to the twins, at almost 18 pounds. Aunts Mary Oswald and Helen Oswald Alexander went to Texas to bring home the babies, because the doctors didn’t think Mom would survive.
Years later, whenever Mom didn’t want to do something, or go someplace, she would usually grumble something to the effect, “I can’t, my stitches still hurt.” She used that excuse until she was over 80.
They never could have dreamed of the sights they would see and the things they would do as they journeyed through life, built a successful business, signed up in Shaklee and traveled the world.
In the song “On the Far Side Banks of Jordan,” Johnny Cash sings to his loving wife June words we believe were in our father’s heart, as he worried and fretted leaving Mom behind. Mr. Cash expressed them so well:
“I believe my steps are growing wearier each day; still I got another journey on my mind. Lures of this old world have ceased to make me wanna stay, and my one regret is leaving you behind.
“But if it proves to be His will that I am first to cross, and somehow I’ve a feeling it will be; when it comes your time to travel, likewise don’t feel lost, for I will be the first one that you’ll see.
“… I’ll be waiting on the far side banks of Jordan; I’ll be sitting drawing pictures in the sand. And when I see you coming I will rise up with a shout, and come running through the shallow water reaching for your hand.”
We see Mom united in heaven with her Mother Rae, affectingly called “Truck,” as kids we never thought to ask why, and Harrison, Sr., Moms Dad. Mom was especially looking forward to the reunion with her Grandmother Mattie Benedict and Sisters Adeline and Helen who she especially missed. Mom had a special place in her heart for her little brother David. We’re hoping he can come back to Minnesota for here celebration. In her last days as I went to see her and she was having trouble with her memory, she got my name right, just had the wrong David… that was okay with me.
Family and friends are coming together to celebrate Mom’s and Dad’s reunion with the Lord in the sky. We will talk about her and probably tell fun stories about them both, as well as other members of the family, past and present. That is just what we do.
The visitation will take place Thursday, August 18 from 5-8 p.m. at Albin Chapel, 6855 Rowland Road, Eden Prairie, MN and a service Friday at 10 a.m. at Plymouth Covenant Church, www.plymouthcovenant.org, 4300 Vicksburg Lane, Plymouth MN. There will be a fellowship time following the service. The entombment will follow at Gethsemane Cemetery Chapel Mausoleum.
Come join us. If you have questions call Becky Cymek (Peterson) at (443-871-6715)