Betty A. Countryman
FUNERAL HOME
Leppert Mortuary & Crematory Services - Nora
740 East 86th Street
Indianapolis, IN

Betty Ann Countryman

Mass of Christian Burial for Betty Ann Kosters Countryman, (b. 1921 in St. Joseph, Missouri) mother of six and former professor of Maternal Child Health Nursing at the I.U. School of Nursing, will be on Monday, April 22nd at 11:00 a.m. in Immaculate Heart of Mary Church of which she had been a member since 1952. Visitation will be at Immaculate of Mary Church on Sunday, April 21st from 3:00 to 6:00 p.m. Burial will follow at a later date in Our Lady of Peace Cemetery.

Betty Ann was graduated from Girls' Latin School in Boston, Harvard University (Radcliffe College, cum laude) and received her Master's Degree in Nursing from the Yale University School of Nursing. She was a member of Mensa, of Alpha Chapter of the Nursing Honorary Society Sigma Theta Tau, of the Yale and Harvard Clubs of Indiana, and of Highland Golf & Country Club.

Much of her personal life was centered around Immaculate Heart of Mary Church which all of her children attended. She was a Girl Scout Leader and Cub Den Mother, and for 30 years coached kickball, receiving the Msgr. Busalt award and St. John Bosco Medal. She received the Outstanding Service Award from IHM in 1996. She served as an active member of the IHM Athletic Committee and as a Minister of Communion for many years. She was named Outstanding Alumna by Girls' Latin School and received the Distinguished Alumna Award from Yale.

For fifty years Betty Ann devoted much of her professional life to the well-being of mother and children. She was a founder of La Leche League of Indiana of and former chairperson of La Leche League International's Board of Directors. In the 1970s she was consultant to the World Health Organization, the Caribbean Food & Nutrition Institute, and the Public Health Department of Jamaica. With a grant from the U.S. Agency for International Development in 1978, she established El Centro de Apoyo de Lactancia Materna in El Salvador, the first Latin-American center for support of breastfeeding and maternal/child health and nutrition. For over 30 years she wrote and spoke about the importance and value of breastfeeding in the U.S., Europe, and Latin America. She was a member of the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners, of Methodist Hospital's Baby Friendly Task Force, and of the Board of Directors of the Indiana Mothers' Milk Bank.

Preceding her in death were three dearly loved people: her husband of more than 61 years, Frank W. Countryman, M.D., her son, Philip A. Countryman, M.D., and her daughter-by-marriage, Alice (Bowman) Countryman, her son Stuart's wife. Surviving are her daughters Marianne Zagorski (Peter) and Elizabeth Allen (Jan), her daughter-by-marriage Sandra (Arnholter) Countryman, Philip's widow, sons Col. Frank W. Jr. ret. (Libby), Stuart B., and Christopher K. (Karen). She also leaves 15 grandchildren and 23 great-grandchildren.

The family would like to thank Senior Home Companions. Also a special thanks to the caregivers who attended mom. To Toni, our love and heartfelt appreciation for all the love you gave mom.

Memorial contributions may be made to Immaculate Heart of Mary Church 5692 Central Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46220, to Le Leche League of Indiana 9958 Brookside Ct., Avon, IN 46123, or to the donor's favorite charity. Arrangements entrusted to Leppert Mortuary, Nora Chapel .

Published by The Indianapolis Star on Apr. 18, 2013.
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48 Entries
I think of Betty Ann often so fondly and, when I eat raw onions, I cant help but think of her smile as she frequently said, a day without onion is like a day without sunshine. She made a profound impact on me and I miss her still.
Teri Short
Friend
April 13, 2020
May rest in peace with Frank.
Fred Easton
Friend
April 12, 2020
She is remembered
Beverly Morgan
Acquaintance
May 1, 2019
I want to express my condolences to the Countryman Family. I remember many walks to Mass when we were at LLLI Conferences together. She was a great Leader and mentor to so many of us. Thank you for sharing her with us.
LLLove from Theresa Kinzly
Theresa Kinzly
May 13, 2013
On behalf of the Leaders and the Board of Directors of Southern California/Nevada, we want you to know what an inspiration of love and dedication Betty was for all of us and for those who come after us. She will be missed but always loved. Sincerely, Gayle McLean BOD Secretary
April 23, 2013
To the Countryman family, your family as well as our community has lost a wonderful woman. Our sympathies to you. Bob and Paula Lee
April 23, 2013
Much love and prayers to the Countryman family. So many mothers and babies were helped through Betty Ann's knowledge, devotion and care. La Leche League of Indiana is fortunate to claim her as "founder". She was a very special lady and friend!
Pam Oselka
Indiana
Pam Oselka
April 22, 2013
I am so sorry for your loss. Mrs Countryman was my long time kickball coach at IHM. I will never forget her!
Lucinda Thurston-Zeigler
April 22, 2013
Dear Betty Ann,
Thank you for your honesty, friendship, optimism, and prayer.
That busy street corner on which you lived, kept you from having the pup you would have loved to have. But you avoided sickness and some of its misery, except these last two years. You kept busy with family, friends, travel, and games of bridge. More importantly you continued to grow well beyond the “awakening of the heart” that occurred at Yale. You found this important pleasure:
“It's a wonderful experience to discover the joys of doing the little things that make others happier. So I'm working on it and find it's a rewarding way to live.”
You missed reaching that 100 mark and the chance to keep your promise to "smoke, drink, carouse and bungy-jump". Yet, perhaps you are free enough to do that now. We send you our blessings.
Peter & Alice Dustin
April 21, 2013
A very important part in our lives for all my family
We will always will remember you Betty Ann
Nicolas
Nicolas Mariscal
April 21, 2013
Dear Countryman family: we are incredibly saddened by the passing of Betty Ann. We are MariCarmen and Nicolas Mariscal's daughter and son in law. We spent lots of memorable moments with her and will always remember her smile, wit and generous spirit.

We intended to come to the funeral but could not do it because of professional commitments. Please know that she has been in our thoughts and prayers since her passing.
Isabel and Carlos Miguel Prieto
April 21, 2013
Dear Countryman family, I am saddened to learn of your loss but confident that she and Frank are complete with their Lord and Savior. Betty Ann was a wonderful mentor and teacher to me as a new mother back in 1963. I remember fondly those first IN LLL meetings in your home, then becoming a Leader and later the IN Treasurer till we moved to Syrcuse in 1976. We were also so pleased when they would come visit us when they would care for a patient one week each summer. Thank you for sharing your wonderful Mother with so many people all those years.
Blessings to you all,
Letitia Dain, Syracuse, IN
April 20, 2013
Countryman Family, Please know of our deepest sympathy and prayers for all of you at this time. We first met Betty Ann many years ago when my mother Nula worked with her. May she rest in peace.
Joseph Harmon
April 20, 2013
Dear Stu and family,

Nick told me about your mother's passing. Please let me offer our sympathy. If mom were alive, she too would extend her prayers, and I suspect she would be right there with you. Reading the obituary gave me so much more insight into Betty's amazing life. I knew about her extensive involvement in IHM, but there was so much more.
Kindly know you are in our prayers. God bless.
Karl Hertz
April 20, 2013
Betty Ann and I shared a passion for books and we exchanged them - she made a difference in my life and I am grateful. She touched many people, achieved multiple goals, and led an incredible full life.
Connie Dagon
April 20, 2013
Thank you for all that you gave to so many of us as LLL Leaders, moms and to all the families that your efforts touched. With you, and our La Leche League sisters across the world, so many lives have been improved...indeed saved to go on to do uncountable positive acts. I hold you up to the light as an inspiration to the world as a mother, wife, nurse, La Leche League Leader, and so much more... truly influential treasure. I leave these words for others-including your family- to know yet another person whose live you touched. This Emerson poem is one I will always associate with you...
"To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children...to leave the world a better place...to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.” Ralph Waldo Emerson.
Chris Hafner-Eaton
April 20, 2013
Betty's love and devotion to her Lord and her family were the source of her strength ~ and her lasting legacy. Our heartfelt thanks and sincere condolences ~
LLL of South Shore/Boston
April 20, 2013
Betty Ann was a delightful neighbor and spiritual leader. I especially liked it when she would wink at me during communion. Always made me smile.

Steve Robinson
April 19, 2013
What a remarkable woman, as a mother and my dear birthday friend. Betty Ann was one of the 1st persons I met when we came to Indianapolis 54 years ago. Without her guidance I would have never succeeded in breast feeding my twin daughters. The drs. said it wasn't possible, but Betty Ann knew more than they knew. I will miss her , and not getting together on Jan.12 for our shared birthdays. The family will be in my thoughts and prayers, as you adjust to life without your dear mother. Dianne Bayley
April 19, 2013
Betty Ann was very meaningfull to the structure of LLLGuatemala, we will always remember her dearly. LLLove to her family.
Mariana Petersen
April 19, 2013
Betty Ann was a wonderful woman. personally she was my friend and neighbor. I will cherish our dinners, drinks, conversations, and the impact she had on my life. Our difference in age made no difference to our friendship and she will be greatly missed in my life.
Lisa Herber
April 19, 2013
Betty Ann made a huge difference to so many. She was loved and will be missed. Condolences to her family.
Peggy Halford
April 19, 2013
Thank you for helping found La Leche League. You were an inspiration to me for my children in the 70's and 80's. I greatly enjoyed the other mom's and babies I met while a member and a Leader. Thank you. Blessings to all your family.
Arlene Gross
April 18, 2013
Thank you Betty for all of your contributions to mothers and babies. I'm sure you have impacted more families than can be counted, and I'm sure that the present movement of breastfeeding is only possible because of women like you.
Renee
April 18, 2013
What an amazing legacy. Sending our love and prayers to the family.
Marie Lowe
April 18, 2013
Dear Betty Ann - role model, peace maker, forward thinker, dedicate to making the world a better place, especially for Moms and babes. I hope that she, Vi, Edwina, Betty reorganize heaven for the rest of us...and add a bit of PIZZAZZ

Prayers and good thoughts to the Countryman family
Helene and Ed Scheff
helene scheff
April 18, 2013
Betty Ann was a dear friend for the past 53 years. I met her in 1960 when I attended a La Leche League meeting with my third son, Jeff, and suddenly found myself the leader of a group in Beech Grove- the 2nd La Leche group in the Indianapolis area. She and Frank were the godparents of our daughter Lisa. For the past several years,due to distance, our friendship was sustained by regular postcards.
Thank you, Stuart, for bringing your mother to Florida for her 90th birthday. You will never know how much she enjoyed it. I'm so glad that Jack and I were able to join you for a luncheon visit in Naples. Sorry we can't make the trip to Indiana for the funeral but know that you and your family are in our prayers.
Jean Canatsey
April 18, 2013
The entire McGuire family sends our condolences to all of you. Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this difficult time.

Lynn and Tony and family
April 18, 2013
Warm wishes of sympathy as well as the celebration of Betty Ann's long & influential life go to her family. Her contributions to breastfeeding families around the world, as well as her direct influence on Leaders including myself will serve as a beautiful legacy. I fondly remember Betty Ann telling me how she told her sons they must find wives who would breastfeed her grand babies.I worked with Frank on several LLLI panels, sharing the stories of your family. Prayers & love. Cecily
Cecily Harkins
April 18, 2013
Dear Chris and Karen,
My sympathy embraces you.
Love, Wanda
April 18, 2013
I worked with Betty Ann on the LLLI Board of Directors for many years and spent some wonderful times with her and Frank at LLLI Physicians Seminars! She was fabulous - smart, goal-oriented, honest, candid, and courageous. I'm blessed to have known her and and learned a lot about leadership from her example as a person who cared passionately about our cause! Rest in peace, dear friend and mentor.
Janet Jendron
April 18, 2013
Please accept my prayers and sympathies on the death of this great Catholic woman who had contributed so much to family, Church and society at large. I regret my schedule will not even allow my coming to the viewing, but she and all the family will be in my prayers.
Msgr. Fred Easton
Fred Easton
April 18, 2013
I am so sorry for your loss of Mother, Grandmother and friend. What a nice life she lived. I know for myself when ever I spoke with Betty Ann, I always felt good. Thinking of you!
Rose Parli
Rose Parli
April 18, 2013
So many memories of great family times together with everyone.
I will miss Betty Ann.
Blessings, Becca Lennon-Weisheit
April 18, 2013
In appreciation for Betty Ann's many years of work on behalf of mothers and babies, my sincere condolences are with her loving family.
Penny Piercy
April 18, 2013
I so enjoyed her company. I am a neighbor and loved making a new girl-friend for the last 5 years. She was an inspiration and will be missed.
Carole van Almelo
April 18, 2013
With our deepest sympathy from the Leaders, mothers and babies of La Leche League, Toms River, New Jersey
Sue Hudler
April 18, 2013
I knew of Betty through La Leche League and ILCA. I would see her at LLL conferences and spoke to her at the last LLL International conference. As one of the pioneers of breastfeeding revival through LLL she has made a difference in the lives of many. Closer to home her work at her church and with children speaks of her caring and giving and nurturing nature. She has left the world a much better place. Having lost a child myself, I suspect she started her journey to be reunited and prepare the way for those she left behind for now.
Beverly Morgan
April 18, 2013
Chris, I am so sorry for your loss> My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.
Jayne (Wilson) Stalcup
April 18, 2013
My sincere condolences to Chris, Stuart and the rest of the family.
Jack Werner
April 18, 2013
My deepest condolences to your family. Betty Ann was a good friend and associate of my mother, Judy Good. She touched many people with her kindness and wisdom. Her contributions toward the health of mothers and babies will always be remembered.
David Good
April 18, 2013
From your god-daughters, Jan, Joan and Monica Canganelli, and from all the Canganelli clan (as well as from our aunt, Thelma S. Neal, and my husband, William H. Reik II), we fondly recall Betty Ann.

We send our love and deepest sympathy to all of our "other" brothers and sisters, the Countryman children.

Betty Ann was incredibly bright; she had a delightful sense of humor; she was a great mother, devoted wife, and a wonderful godmother. We will miss her dearly.
Jan Canganelli
April 18, 2013
Betty Ann was absolutely the most influential single person in my life as a mother. She will always hold a special place in my heart. May you find comfort in knowing the thousands of lives she touched and changed.
Cindy Smith
April 18, 2013
Frank & Chris,
Sorry to read of your mothers passing. She was a Grand Lady! I am sure GOD is pleased that she is back home. Mike McGinley, Indianapolis
April 18, 2013
I spent many days at thier house as a friend of her daughter Marianne. She was so sweet to me and such a wonderful role model. My thoughts and prayers are with her family. Marcia Riley Clift
April 18, 2013
I am so sorry for your loss. Betty Ann was my friend and confidant during a period in my life that I was in the IHM community. She was one of the people in my life that I will be forever grateful to have known. She was wise, smart and genuine. I am a better person for having been lucky enough to have known her and Frank. Her son Phil was my doctor just by coincidence. I loved them both. What a true loss to the world. I loved you Betty Ann.
April 18, 2013
My darling friend, B.A.
You will be missed.
I treasure the memories of our short friendship. I rejoice knowing that you are finally in the arms of your Blessed Savior and playing heavenly golf with Frank again. :-)
Thank you for being my friend.
Teri Short
April 18, 2013
So sorry to hear of the passing of Mrs. Countryman. Prayers and condolences to the family that you find peace and comfort in knowing she is resting with our God in a beautiful place, heaven. Praying also that you all are wrapped in the arms of God to remain strong in the coming days, weeks and for all time. I miss Dr. Countryman. Chris and Stuart I miss you both as my post office customers. You all are a fine family and I'm sure your mom had a lot to do with that. Take care and may she RIPIH!
Teresa King
April 18, 2013
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