Doris Ilene Bess Doris Ilene Bess, 81, passed away peacefully at home in the presence of her loving family on Sunday morning, October 21, 2012. Doris was born on June 23, 1931 in Battle Creek, Michigan. She was the daughter of Manual and Clara (Holman) Mathis. Doris attended Wilson Elementary, Southwestern Junior High, and Battle Creek Central High School graduating in 1949. She married Kenneth C. Bess on December 2, 1950. They met in elementary school, became a couple in junior high school, were high school sweethearts and enjoyed sixty two years of unconditional married love. She was employed by Bell Telephone in 1949. She worked as a supervisor in the Underwriting Department at Peoples Home Life Insurance Company beginning in 1967, retiring in 1984. When her children began school, she was a tireless volunteer as a room mother and PTA member in the Battle Creek Public Schools. Doris enjoyed many sports; was an avid University of Michigan wrestling fan, and supported many of the local athletic teams. Doris was an important volunteer worker for many years of the M.H.S.A.A wrestling state championship when it first came to Battle Creek. She was an avid Detroit Tigers fan and visited Comerica Park in Detroit on Father's Day this year, watching her great grandson circle the bases. She and her husband Ken enjoyed traveling and visited all 50 states. She was a wonderful cook and was famous for hosting large family celebrations on birthdays and holidays. Doris' love reached far beyond her family, evidenced by the number of the friends of her children and grandchildren who have come to claim her as their own. She is survived by her loving husband of 62 years, Kenneth C. Bess; sons, Michael D. Bess (Colleen) and Douglas A. Bess (Linda); daughters, Deborah L. Zaribaf (Mousa) and Jacqueline M. Bess (Chris Magnant); daughter-in-law, Kathy Bess; grandchildren, Teresa Macfarlane (Conor), Angie Bess (Chris Lok), Michael Bess (Jessica), and Casey Bess; her three great-grandchildren, Brayden, Ellie and Peyton; her brother, Connie Max Mathis (Ginger). Doris's family will receive friends from 2:00-4:00 PM and 6:00-8:00 PM Wednesday at the Bachman Hebble Funeral Service, where funeral services to celebrate Doris's life will be held 2:00 PM Thursday, October 25, 2012. A private interment will follow at Memorial Park Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to Lifespan Good Samaritan Hospice Residence.
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Published in Battle Creek Enquirer on Oct. 23, 2012