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Elizabeth Anne "Betz" Schmitz, 77

A year after her diagnosis of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig's disease), Betz passed away peacefully at age 77 on Sunday, Feb. 15, 2009, embraced by her loving family.

Betz was born in Red Wing, Minn., Jan. 25, 1932. She enjoyed life on Shady Grove farm near Esdaile in Pierce County, Wis., with her parents and her three older brothers. After graduating from Ellsworth High School in 1948, she lived in Red Wing while working as an aide at the University Hospital.

Betz married Arthur Weghorn of Hartland Township in 1950. They resided in Montevideo, where Jean and John were born. Art was killed in a car accident in 1954, and Betz and the children moved to Ellsworth, Wis.

Betz met Robert Schmitz of Welch, Minn., in 1956. They married, moved to Hastings and welcomed Mark, Beth, and Scott into their family.

When the children were all in school, Betz went to work as an aide at Regina Memorial Hospital. She went back to school twice, first graduating with an LPN degree and later becoming a registered nurse. She then worked at the Inver Grove Good Samaritan Care Center until she retired in 2005.

Betz was one of the best Friends of Pleasant Hill Library in Hastings, visiting weekly, lugging in and out a full book bag each time. She had many long-time friends with whom she enjoyed conversation, lunches at new restaurants and old favorites, and traveling whenever a friend or family member was available. She loved all 19 trips to Hawaii and warned us not to go there unless we were prepared to be hooked for life!

Betz was preceded in death by her first husband; parents, John and Cora (Buettner) Johnsen; stepmother, Esther (Ottman) Johnsen; brothers, Chester, Raymond, and Graydon Johnsen; and stepsister, Marion (Larson) Steele.

She is survived by children, Jean Weghorn (Gary) Burr, Mark Schmitz, and Scott (Michelle) Schmitz of Hastings, John Weghorn of Minneapolis, and Beth Schmitz of Forest Lake; grandchildren, Sarah Elisabeth (Jon) McTague, Bryan (Melissa Voelker) Burr, Michaela Burr, Elissah (Chris) Becknell, Maritza Ramirez, Andrew Ramirez, Jacki Schmitz, Robert Schmitz, and Amelia Schmitz; great-grandchildren, Torrie, AJ, Lindsay, Ashley Elizabeth, Megan, Natalie, and Jillian Elizabeth.

Visitation begins at 4 p.m. Friday, Feb. 20, with a 7 p.m. memorial service at Wise Family Funeral Home, 400 Spring Street, Hast-

ings, Minn. (www. Private family interment will be at a later date. Memorials are preferred to Hastings Family Service or the ALS Association.