GREENFIELD - Bertha Alice (Rawson) Reum died surrounded by her family on Thursday, April 4, 2013, at the age of ninety-two at Poet's Seat Health Care Center.
She was born in Greenfield on May 14, 1920, the daughter of Wilson and Alice (Brooks) Rawson. She attended Greenfield schools, including a one-room schoolhouse on Leyden Road, and graduated Greenfield High School in 1937.
She and her husband, Charles F. Reum, were high school sweethearts and they were married in 1945 at the First Congregational Church in Greenfield by the Rev. Warren Campbell. Charles "Franny" preceded his wife in death in 1971.
Bertha and Franny built a house on Barton Road in Greenfield, and moved in March of 1949. Her home meant a great deal to Bertha and she was very happy to live there until October of 2011, when she went into the nursing home.
Bertha, before her marriage, worked at Weston's Bakery on Federal Street. She was a stay-at-home Mom while her children were growing up. When she became a widow at the age of fifty-one, she got a job as a switchboard operator at the then Franklin County Public Hospital. She worked there for twenty-five years and retired from her full-time job in 1996, at the age of seventy-six.
Bertha loved to read, do crossword puzzles, watch birds, and look at flowers. She loved her home but her first devotion was to her family. She loved cooking and hosting family gatherings and being a mother, grandmother and great-grandma.
Survivors include her daughters, Carolyn Bellany and her husband James of Greenfield and Patricia Reum of Highland County, Virginia; her son, Charles F. Reum, Jr. and his wife Janice of Greenfield. She leaves her grandchildren, Angela Bristol and her husband Alan of Greenfield, Christopher Bellany of Turners Falls, Kristina Willette of Greenfield, Alison Casey Burke of New York City, Sarah Burke Green and her husband Seth of Charlottesville, Va., and Celina Reum of Greenfield. She also leaves her step-grandchildren, Paul Bellany of Bedford and Jennifer Smith of Arizona. She also leaves her great-grandchildren, Andrew and Kaleigh DeMello, Brianna and Ryan and Caleb Bristol, and Kayla, Alyssa, Brittney and Alex of Florida state, and several cousins and nieces and nephews.
She was a wonderful mother, grandmother, "grandma choo-choo," and "gramma great."
She was predeceased by her husband; her sister, Ruth Councilman, and her brother, Kenneth Rawson.
The family is so grateful for the wonderful and loving care Bertha received at Poet's Seat Health Care Center.
Bertha was a member of the First Congregational Church of Greenfield for many years and at one time served on the Diaconate.
A celebration of her life will be on Monday at 2 p.m. at the Kostanski Funeral Home, 220 Federal St., Greenfield. Burial will immediately follow in South Cemetery in Leyden.
A calling hour will be Monday from 1 p.m. until the time of the service.
A reception will be held at Franklin County Boat Club in Gill following the burial in Leyden.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Memorial Fund of the First Congregational Church, 43 Silver St., Greenfield, MA 01301 or New England Hospice at Poet's Seat Health Care Center, 359 High St., Greenfield, MA 01301.
Sympathy message available at: www.kostanskifuneralhome.com.