Betty Ann Bauer, “She who holds the tickets”.
Our Aunt Bets passed away on February 1, 2014. She was born on December 6, 1932 in Beaver Dam to Victor and Celia Rechek Bauer. Betty was a graduate of Mayville High School, Dodge County Normal School and University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh. In September, 1952 she began her teaching career in a one-room schoolhouse in the Town of Burnett. That first contract earned her the impressive sum of $925 a year. Betty retired from the Waukesha School District on June 10, 1993. She inspired thousands of 6th graders over her many years at Hawthorne Elementary School, and was especially proud when she read and heard of their accomplishments.
Betty traveled to many countries and continents. She cruised through the Panama Canal, experienced first-hand the “midnight sun” of the Scandinavian countries, saw the Andes Mountains and the Aegean Sea. She saw the Berlin Wall before it came down and stood in Red Square when it was located in the Soviet Union. Her travels to Africa brought about her love of giraffes, or “twigas”, as she preferred to call them in the native Swahili language. There isn’t a niece or nephew who hasn’t experienced Aunt Bets’ travel slide shows on a slide projector and screen set up in a living room. Before rheumatoid arthritis crippled her hands, she was an avid knitter, enjoyed counted cross stitch, and jigsaw and crossword puzzles. Betty relished dinners out, a Friday night fish fry, and a “Perfect Brandy Manhattan with an olive”. She cheered on the Green Bay Packers in the stands of the old County Stadium and later, vicariously through the experiences of the Leisses children: Beth (Paul) Helm, Michael (Eileen) Leisses, Susan (Randy) Weier, and David (Tammy) Leisses. Socializing, shopping and following the achievements of her great nieces and nephews occupied her time.
Betty was preceded in death by her parents: her brother, Ronald; and her brother-in-law, Joe Leisses. She is survived by her sister, Marlene Leisses of Fond du Lac; brother, Joe (Christine) Bauer of Arizona; sister-in law, Bernadine Bauer of McFarland; a special niece, caregiver and god-daughter, Beth Helm of Brownsville; god-daughter, Patricia (David Geister) Bauer of Minneapolis; and numerous other nieces, nephews and extended family. Betty will also be missed by many friends.
A Liturgy of the Word will be celebrated at 1:00 p.m. on Friday, February 7, 2014, at Mach Funeral Chapel & Crematory, 31 E. Division Street, Fond du Lac. The family will greet relatives and friends on Friday at Mach Funeral Chapel & Crematory from 11:00 a.m. until the time of service.
The family wishes to thank Touching Hearts of Waukesha and the staff of Franciscan Woods for the wonderful, caring help provided to Betty. In lieu of flowers, memorials in Betty’s name are appreciated.