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Benita “Bea” Irene Gavin

Benita “Bea” Irene Gavin passed away on September 14, 2020.  She was
born on June 21, 1930, to James and Helen O’Brien Bride.  It was
remembered that the day of her birth was a very hot day and Helen had
just finished playing the organ for a funeral when she went into labor.

Benita grew up in the Monmouth, Roseville, and Alexis areas on various
farms.  In her younger days she attended Picayune School, which was a
one room school house in the Larchland area.  She attended Roseville
High School and St. Mary’s Academy in Nauvoo, Illinois graduating in
1948. Bea cherished her time at St. Mary’s Academy and would stay close
to many of her classmates and also to her catholic faith that continued
to be cultivated there and meant so much to her.

After graduation she enjoyed spending time with friends in the Rural
Youth Group and that is where she met her husband Donald. Benita and
Donald were married on June 27, 1953 after Donald returned from serving
in the Korean War. They settled west of Monmouth where they would begin
farming 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 also
nurtured thirteen grandchildren who came to know her as their ‘Grandma
Bea’. 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 left
hungry.  She was an excellent cook and continued to serve a hot dinner
to her farmers, her grandkids, and other family members that came by
until 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 than
others, 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, her
sister-in-law Alice (Larry) Enderlin of Monmouth, children Teresa Gavin
of Cedar Falls, Iowa, Gary Gavin of Monmouth, Gloria (Charlie) Geer of
Monmouth, and Chris (Lisa) Gavin of Monmouth. She is also survived by 13
grandchildren:  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. She
was 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 and
the rosary will be recited at 10:30 prior to the Mass.  All services
will be held at Immaculate Conception Church, Monmouth.  For those
family and friends who are unable to be present the Rosary and funeral
Mass will be live streamed on the YouTube channel for Immaculate
Conception 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

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