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Benita “Bea” Irene Gavin passed away on September 14, 2020. She wasborn on June 21, 1930, to James and Helen O’Brien Bride. It wasremembered that the day of her birth was a very hot day and Helen hadjust finished playing the organ for a funeral when she went into labor.
Benita grew up in the Monmouth, Roseville, and Alexis areas on variousfarms. In her younger days she attended Picayune School, which was aone room school house in the Larchland area. She attended RosevilleHigh School and St. Mary’s Academy in Nauvoo, Illinois graduating in1948. Bea cherished her time at St. Mary’s Academy and would stay closeto many of her classmates and also to her catholic faith that continuedto be cultivated there and meant so much to her.
After graduation she enjoyed spending time with friends in the RuralYouth Group and that is where she met her husband Donald. Benita andDonald were married on June 27, 1953 after Donald returned from servingin the Korean War. They settled west of Monmouth where they would beginfarming and raising their family. Along with living a simple farm life,Bea and Donald enjoyed going dancing and playing cards.
Bea was a devoted wife and mother who raised five children and alsonurtured thirteen grandchildren who came to know her as their ‘GrandmaBea’. Bea loved to cook for her farm family never knowing how many would show up at the table for the daily noon meal, but no one ever lefthungry. She was an excellent cook and continued to serve a hot dinnerto her farmers, her grandkids, and other family members that came byuntil just recently. She was also known for her wonderful pies. Grandma Bea was asked many times by family members to teach them how to bake pies, which she was happy to do. Some were better students thanothers, but we fear no one was able to master her pie making skills. Bea was also a very active member of the Immaculate Conception Church and enjoyed attending daily mass for many years. In recent years, her grown children and grandchildren knew if they wanted a hot breakfast on Sunday morning, they just needed to get up and attend Mass at 8 AM and breakfast was served directly following church services.
She also will be remembered for her strength and compassion as a caregiver. First, in taking care of her son Stan during a long battle with leukemia prior to his passing in 1986. Then in taking care of her husband Donald who suffered from Alzheimer’s and spent many years at Monmouth Nursing Home. It was very rare for her not to visit twice a day to feed him lunch and dinner. Even as a resident at Courtyard Estates this past year, she was at her best when caring for others and helping out the staff.
Benita is survived by her brother Fred Bride (Jane) of Roseville, hersister-in-law Alice (Larry) Enderlin of Monmouth, children Teresa Gavinof Cedar Falls, Iowa, Gary Gavin of Monmouth, Gloria (Charlie) Geer ofMonmouth, and Chris (Lisa) Gavin of Monmouth. She is also survived by 13grandchildren: Matt Gavin (Cassie), Amanda (Michael) Shows, Paul Gavin,Andrew Gavin, Melissa Gavin, Adam Geer, Maggie (Alex) Geer, Luke(Allison) Geer, Aaron (Brittany) Gavin, Patrick Gavin, Alex Gavin, Jake(Meg) Gavin, and Maddy Gavin. She also has 10 great grandchildren. Shewas preceded in death by her parents, her son Stan, her husband Donald,her brother Donald Bride, and her sister Mariella Colclasure.
A funeral Mass will be held at Immaculate Conception Church on Saturday,September 19, at 11 AM. Visitation will be from 9 AM to 10:30 AM andthe rosary will be recited at 10:30 prior to the Mass. All serviceswill be held at Immaculate Conception Church, Monmouth. For thosefamily and friends who are unable to be present the Rosary and funeralMass will be live streamed on the YouTube channel for ImmaculateConception Church. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Immaculate Conception School or the Warren County Relay for Life. Due to Covid-19 pandemic, masks and social distancing will be required. For more information, or to leave a remembrance of Bea, please visit www.turnbullfuneralhomes.com.