Even before the time I was standing at her kitchen sink snacking on apple peels and ‘pie sides,’ my Grandma was a constant, comforting presence in my life. That changed in August 2013 as she transitioned out of this world at the age of 92.
She lived a full and happy life; rich in family, experiences, laughter and great food. All of these lovely people pictured above (plus a few more) are Betty’s legacy.
Betty’s notes on the events of the day pictured above:
Grandma wasn’t really ‘into’ e-mail or the world wide web, but you’ll find her online presence with ‘Grandma’s’ recipes and family remembrances on these pages.
Betty (Elisabeth) A. Wrysinski passed away on August 3, 2013 at the age of 92. Betty was born on January 14, 1921 in Park Falls, Wisconsin to August and Lillian Schmidt. After graduating from high school Betty worked at Rabinowich’s department store until her marriage to Harry Wrysinski on February 22, 1941.
During World War II, Betty lived in San Francisco and cared for her infant daughter, Dianne, (first of seven) while her husband was stationed at Treasure Island. Once he was shipped out, Betty, pregnant with her second child (Allan), took a train back to Wisconsin to live with her husbands parents. Allan was born in Wisconsin.
While on his way to Pearl Harbor, the war ended and the small family moved to Colusa ‘where the hunting and fishing was good!’ Over the next 20 years the other 6 children were born.
Married for over 50 years, Betty and Harry were very much a team who worked together to raise their family. They established one of California’s first kiwi farms and ran the Colusa Credit Bureau for many years.
They harvested and enjoyed the fruits of the land, good friends, good food and entertaining visiting relatives. They taught their children to have a sense of humor and determination. They taught them to be self sufficient, independent thinkers and gave them plenty of opportunities to enjoy nature.
Their children grew up to be engineers, scientists, accountants and business people. Until her death, large family gatherings usually focused on her whereabouts. She maintained regular communication with her sons and daughters and always enjoyed catching up on what was going on with her grandchildren.
Betty maintained a close relationship with her younger sister Joanne. Long phone chats would be spent sharing jokes and the events of their lives. She was also crafty, artistic and an avid reader. She was a great cook who excelled with wild game. She had a quiet way of communicating that spoke volumes. A complaint at the table would result in a plate being removed and scraped into the trash or to fill a coffee cup to the very brim so that it could not be moved with out a spill.
Betty had a way of looking at life that was stoic and accepting of the facts. She also had a deep strength and a desire that all of her children stay connected with each other.
Betty was a member of Our Lady of Lourdes Parish Catholic Ladies Relief Society, the Colusa Hospital Pink Ladies, the Pacific Flyway Quilters and always participated in various parish and school functions for her large family.
She was preceded in death by her husband Harry and is survived by all seven of her children, Dianne (Wayne Peterson), Allan (Chris), Ray (Karen), Mary (Kevin Greene, deceased), Jeanette (David Rosen), Peggy (Larkin Greene) and Jon (Colleen); fourteen grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
She will be greatly missed and will remain in the hearts of all who love her.