Betty Jean Schnackenberg was born June 10th, 1940, in Portland, Oregon the daughter of Cecil and Vesta (Conley) Smith. While Betty Jean was still young the family moved to Iowa. Being one of the oldest Betty was busy helping out with her younger siblings. Betty graduated from Mount Ayr High School. She married Leonard Watts who later passed away.
Betty was a hard worker she held several jobs in her life. She cleaned and painted houses and also was a waitress at the Diagonal Café. She later was a janitor at the Diagonal School. When she retired she was given a memory book with memories from some of the school kids – most were of Betty coming to their classroom to get a bat.
Betty was blessed with 3 children Linda, Treasa, and David. When Betty wasn’t busy with the kids she loved to garden and work in her flower beds, embroidery, and quilt. She made a quilt for each one of her kids as well as her grandkids. Many hours went into those quilts.
Betty always said she liked being at home but she enjoyed doing a bit of traveling as well. She especially loved going to her grandkid’s ballgames. She took several trips with family.
One of Betty’s house cleaning jobs was for Myron Schnackenberg. After getting approval from her kids, she agreed to go on a date with Myron. It must of went well because Betty and Myron were united in marriage March 21, 1998. Myron shared Betty’s love of gardening and flowers. They worked side by side in the yard and had beautiful gardens and flowers. Not often would you see one without the other.
Eventually after Myron passed away the yard got to be too much for Betty, and she moved to Lenox to be closer to family. She enjoyed meeting and visiting with her neighbors at her apartment complex. Betty always said she had a hard time talking to people because she never knew what to say. Her family never saw this trait in her because when they were out with her she would be chatting someone up and after we walked away they would say who was that and she would reply “hell I don’t know”. She always chatted with people in the stores especially if they had kids. She loved kids. Betty truly loved her kids and grandkids and loved spending every minute she could with them.
Betty passed away on December 23, 2023. Left to cherish the memories of a wonderful Mom and Grandma are her children Linda (Bob) Hintz and Treasa Weaver all of Lenox, Iowa and David (Tricia) Watts of Clive, Iowa; her grandchildren Heather (Dan) Wells, Jennifer (Adam) Velde, Erin (Tim) Hellum, Cheyenne Hintz and fiancée Matt Bertelsen, James (Heidi), Angela (Mark) Culbertson, David (Nikki) Weaver, Brady (Megan) Weaver, Cody Weaver, Chris (Kim) Weaver, Lily Watts, Anthony Watts, Natalee Watts, Leanna Watts, Ashley Watts, Sammy Watts; 15 great grandchildren and 5 great great grandchildren; sisters Irene Ayers, Barb Strange, Phyllis (Dale) Cregeen; brothers Gary (Brenda) Smith and Jock (Robin) Smith; sister in law Dorothy Smith and many nieces, nephews, and friends.
Proceeding Betty in death are her parents Cecil and Vesta; her grandparents; sister Roxie Fletcher; brothers infant twins Lee and Dee, Cecil Smith, Richard Smith, John Smith; son-in-law Dale Weaver; brothers-in-law Bud Ayers, Charlie Fletcher, Bob Strange; nephews Kenny Carson and John Coverdell. Armstrong Funeral Home in Mount Ayr was in charge of the arrangements.