Elizabeth 'Betty' Grangaard
Elizabeth "Betty" Grangaard, 89, passed away Friday, March 12, 2021, after a long journey through Alzheimer's and heart disease.
She is survived by George, her husband of 69 years; her children, Jane, Paul (Carol Stumpf), Susan (Wiens); seven grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; and preceded in death by son, Mark (Bunny).
Betty was born in La Crosse, and lived and raised her family in Winona. She was a sweet, compassionate, loving, kind, giving person, who always put others before herself. She volunteered at the Winona Hospital, delivered Meals on Wheels and worked to start recycling in Winona. She so loved children that after raising her own four, she went to work at a Nursery School. Just a few weeks before she passed, she whistled tunes on Face Time with one of her great-grandchildren and delighted as he giggled and tried to whistle them back. She loved to write poetry and was proud to have edited and typed all of her husband's college, masters and doctoral papers and theses. Betty also worked for the Tribune in La Crosse and at Winona State College as a secretary.
As a teenager she worked at her maternal grandmother's Knutson Brothers Dairy, at the soda fountain. She wrote in her autobiography, "When they started the dairy, they delivered milk with a carriage pulled by horses. Later I worked for another uncle who had a radio and electronics repair shop. I sold records - right up my alley, because I loved music."
Betty was a gleeful member of the School Bells Choir in Winona and continued to sing and dance until the week her heart failed her. Betty took refuge in her religion and wrote, "It was faith that has gotten me through all the tough times in my life. God does answer prayers!"
We found this prayer taped inside her medicine cabinet in Winona, next to her toothbrush, where she could read it to start every day: "Oh Heavenly Father, we thank thee for food and remember the hungry. We thank thee for health and remember the sick. We thank thee for friends and remember the friendless. We thank thee for freedom and remember the enslaved. May these remembrances stir us to service, that thy gifts to us may be used for others. Amen"
May her gentle spirit rest in peace.