PORTLAND Mary Beasley, a long-time resident of Ilwaco, died May 5, 2011, in Portland, surrounded by family and caregivers. She was born May 19, 1923, to Emil and Eva DeBacker in Escanaba, Mich.
Before the end of World War II, she moved to San Francisco and was employed as a supervisor at a regional telephone company. On a blind date, she met her husband, Bob, who was stationed at the naval blimp base in Mountain View, Calif. Soon after, they were wed on Nov. 28, 1946.
The couple moved to Ilwaco, where he was a commercial fisherman and she worked at the National Bank of Commerce. During the late 1950s, they operated the bowling alley in Long Beach. In 1962, they built Peninsula Bowl outside of Ilwaco overlooking Black Lake.
Mrs. Beasley had many sides of her life that many knew in pieces but never the whole picture. She was disciplined, driven, even demanding at times, but always loving to those she cared about. After the closure of the bowling alley in 1972, she waitressed at Reds Café, clerked at Bendicksons in Nahcotta and retired from the Ocean Beach School District in 1988. After retirement, she and her husband traveled but mostly resided in Ilwaco where she volunteered at the Ilwaco Heritage Museum.
Survivors include her daughter, Linda Beasley-Freeman of Portland; son, Bob (Ann) of Tigard, Ore.; grandchildren, Chris and Kelsie Beasley; brother and sister-in-law, Don and Nellie Beasley of Ilwaco; sisters, Jane Pryal and Dorothy (Jerry) VanDamme of Escanaba, Mich., and many relatives and friends. She was preceded in death by her husband Bob in January 1998; two brothers, Pat and Jerome; and sisters, Rose Beauchamp and Jeanette VanDamme.
There will be a memorial service at 1 p.m., May 19 in the chapel at Calaroga Terrace at 1400 NE 2nd Avenue in Portland, with a reception following. She was interned with her husband at Willamette National Cemetery in Portland.
Her family said they will miss her as she was caring, loving and supportive when at times life was too difficult to bear. They expressed their sincere appreciation to the staff at Calaroga Terrace and Hospice Care of the Northwest in Portland. Donations may be made in her name to the Columbia Pacific Heritage Museum.