Beard, Jesse Woodrow "Woody," 100, former longtime resident of Rancho Bernardo, California was a true gentleman and his family and friends will remember his zest for life, keen sense of humor, and deep affection. Woody was born Aug. 26, 1912 to Elijah Jefferson (E.J.) and Essie Maring Beard in Exline, Iowa and died April 14, 2013 in Bel Aire, Kansas. Woody's drive to be strong and succeed began during those early farming years and continued as his athletic and leadership abilities grew. After graduating from University of Iowa, he worked for the A.C. Nielsen Company and he and his beloved Dorothy Walker Golden were married on March 9, 1940 and lived in NYC. During WWII, he served proudly as Executive Officer of the Navy Catalogue office and earned the rank of Lieutenant Commander. After the War, he and Dorothy moved back to Iowa to raise their two young daughters. During their 28 years in Des Moines, Woody enjoyed a successful career with the Register and Tribune Newspaper and became National Advertising Manager. He and Dorothy were both deeply involved in their community. Woody served as president of many boards, played golf well, and travelled widely with his family. After moving to Rancho Bernardo in 1976, Woody continued these abiding interests. He treasured his family and friends and took great satisfaction from his years of promoting music in RB, especially through their Presbyterian Church, the Library, and Symphony-on-the-Green. During these years, Woody tenderly cared for Dorothy who died of Alzheimer's in 1998 after their loving marriage of 57 years. Since moving to Kansas in 2006, Woody enjoyed frequent visits by his family and friends and was blessed by new friends and kind professional care givers. Survivors include two daughters, Carolyn Benefiel (Roger) of Wichita, KS; Mary Maxwell (Carlis) of Oxnard, CA; four grandchildren and four great grandchildren: Carl Benefiel (Leah) and their children, Jay and Thomas; Joan Benefiel (Jeremy Leichman) and their son, Clay; Tricia Maxwell and her daughter Elizabeth; and Lisa Maxwell. Other survivors are his sister, Helen Schnabel, and brother-in-law, Jay Zink, and many loving nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his wife, infant daughter Barbara, his parents and sisters: Maxine Coons Flowers, Mary Gibson, and Liz Zink. Memorial gifts may be sent to Catholic Care Center Samaritan Fund, 6550 E. 45th St. N., Bel Aire, KS, 67226. Interment will be at Glendale Cemetery in Des Moines, Iowa. Family Services are pending.
Published in The Wichita Eagle on Apr. 17, 2013