Bette June (Farmer) Andersen, 85 ½ years old, passed away in her sleep on Sunday December 23, 2012 at Golden Living Center (GLC) Dorchester, Sturgeon Bay, WI from complications of congestive heart and kidney failure. She was born in St. Joseph, Missouri on June 21, 1927 to Ralph Farmer & Susie C. (Merritt) Peterman. She was the eldest of 2 daughters.
She lived in Missouri into her early childhood before starting an adventure with her mother and sister, Freida that took them eventually to California. They first went to Evanston, Wyoming, then Pendleton, Oregon before settling in Oakland, CA around 1941. Bette graduated from Oakland Technical High School in 1945. She worked at Kress Drug Store and then started nurses training but was unable to finish due to health reasons. She married Frank Leyba on April 15, 1948 & from this union a daughter, Wendi was born in 1953. They later divorced and she went to work at Wells Fargo Bank where she was a merchant teller. During her work there she met Hannes Andersen and fell in love. They were married on June 24, 1958 in Carson City, NV and settled in Oakland, CA where Hannes had built a home in the Oakland hills. A second daughter, Christine was born in 1959. Bette was a homemaker & stay at home mom while raising both daughters.
In 1977 Hannes retired from the Oakland Fire Department and they moved to his hometown of Washington Island, WI where they built their retirement home. Bette became involved in the local community. She was a member of Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church along with Hannes and was also involved in local organizations including the Washington Island Women's Club, American Legion Auxiliary and Detroit Harbor Ladies Aid Society(DHLAS).
During her DHLAS membership, Bette suggested that the Evergreen Lodge building that they owned become a second hand store to raise money to help pay off the mortgage and raise funds to help local organizations. The store was named the "Twice Around Shop" and it opened in 1997. Since then many "treasures" have passed through its' doors and found new homes. The Twice Around's shop proceeds helped to pay off the mortage and put money in the bank so they can support local organizations. Last year was its' most successful year with raising funds to give back to the Washington Island community.
Bette spent many winters with Hannes in Arizona but in 2007 due to declining health reasons, they made Washington Island their year round home. They were able to stay in their home till 2009 when they moved to Pinecrest Assisted Living in Sturgeon Bay. Hannes passed away in 2010. In 2011 Bette went to GLC Dorchester to regain her leg strength in hopes she would be able to walk with her walker so she could return to her assisted living apartment. However after 3 months of rehabilitation, the decision was made to make GLC Dorchester her permanent home for personal safety reasons. Bette lived out the remaining year of her life here with the Dorchester family.
Bette is survived by her daughters, Wendi Leyba of Walnut Creek, CA and Christine Andersen of Washington Island, WI; her sister, Freida Hance, Rancho Cordova, CA; aunt, Vivian Graff, Brookfield, MO; nephews, George Nelson, Martin & Peter Andersen and John Gust; nieces, Kim Young, Ann Schroeder, Maren Lund, Helen Williams, Dottie Neal, Mary Campbell, Kathy & Nancy Peterman; great niece Emily (Roland) Kenning; special friends, Lou & Gloria Small & their families and numerous great nieces & nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband, Hannes; her parents, Ralph Farmer & Susie C. (Merritt) Peterman; brother-in-laws Spencer Nelson, Marvin Andersen, John Gust, Mike Peterman & Arthur (Dutch) Hance; sister-in-laws Olivia & Lorraine Andersen, Sylvia Nelson, Louise Gust & Marge Peterman and niece, Kelli (Hance) Chalecki.
The family would like to thank GLC Dorchester for their kind, compassionate & professional care that was bestowed upon Bette in her last year of life. This was also extended to the family and it was wonderful to make this feel like home to all of us. The family would also like to thank Ascera Care Hospice for their end of life care for Bette.
A Memorial Service/Celebration of Life will be on Tuesday July 2 @ 11am at Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church on Washington Island with lunch following. All are invited to join us. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Washington Island Rescue Squad or Fire Department. PO Box 111, Washington Island, WI 54246; Trinity Lutheran Church, 1765 Town Line Road, Washington Island, WI 54246; Detroit Harbor Ladies Aid Society, Washington Island, WI 54246 or your organization of choice. Online condolences can be offered at www.caspersonfuneralhome.com.