1-2:00 P.M. on Wednesday, January 15, 2014 at Riverview Place Chapel, Fargo.
2:00 P.M. on Wednesday, January 15, 2014 at Riverview Place Chapel, Fargo.
North Dakota Veterans Cemetery, Mandan, ND.
Boulger Funeral Home, Fargo.
Elizabeth (Betty) Retterath, 90, Lidgerwood, ND, died on Sunday, January 12, 2014 at Sheyenne Care Center, Valley City, ND under the care of Hospice with her family present.
Elizabeth Isabel Barnes was born on April 10, 1923 to Maude (Hanson) and Elmer Barnes in Burlington, IA. She was the fourth of five children. She was baptized on October 21, 1923 at Trinity Lutheran Church in Burlington. Betty graduated from Burlington High School in 1941 and received her Registered Nurse degree from the Burlington Hospital School for Nurses in 1944.
Immediately after graduation, Betty joined the Army Nurse Corps and graduated from Basic Training as a Second Lieutenant. Betty once commented that all of the clothing was way too big for her five foot frame! Her first assignment was at Camp Carson, CO for surgery training where the surgeons repaired and remade thumbs and ears for returning soldiers from WWII. Her next assignment was Schick General in Clinton, IA, where she given the task to create a care plan for a group of incoming POWs. Betty would care for, came to love, and eventually marry one of those POWs—Peter N. Retterath.
After their marriage on October 25, 1945, at St. Boniface Church in Clinton, IA, the couple moved to Lidgerwood, ND, where during their 59 years of marriage, they raised five children. Betty worked as an RN at the St Gerard’s Hospital, Hankinson, ND, for most of her career. She was an active volunteer at St. Boniface Catholic School and Church, as well as many community events in Lidgerwood, and was a charter member of the Lidgerwood Women’s Club. Betty was well known in her neighborhood for her wonderful baking skills, especially chocolate chip cookies with three chocolate chips in each cookie so the kids could not fight over the cookies!
Pete and Betty traveled around the nation and spent 25 years as snowbirds in Tucson, AZ, where they lived and volunteered extensively at the Pima County Air Museum. During their time in Tucson, Betty also volunteered for the Tucson Veterans Hospital, worked at several other Tucson hospitals and hospice.
Betty was an extraordinary nurse. Over the years, many people told her that she was the best nurse they had ever had, but none was more grateful for her skills and expertise than her husband.
When Pete died in 2004, Betty continued living in Lidgerwood. In 2007, Betty moved to Fargo and resided at RiverView Place for four years, Edgewood Vista for two years and most recently Sheyenne Care Center in Valley City, ND.
Betty was preceded in death by her infant brother Bobbie, her parents, her sister Doris (Harry) Kulp, brother Don (Mary) Barnes , brother Jim (Harriett) Barnes, an infant son, and her husband.
Betty is survived by her children: John (Wendy) Retterath, Judi (Darnell) Lundstrom, Kathy (Pete) Erickson, Patrick (Cheryl) Retterath, and Jeannie (Bob) Bush. She is also survived by 12 grandchildren, 14 great-grandchildren, and 5 nieces and 4 nephews.
On lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the Alzheimer’s Association-North Dakota Chapter.