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Our dear Elizabeth “Beth” Wakley Holmgren passed away peacefully on Friday, September 25, 2020 at the age of 98 in her home in Bear River City, Utah.
Beth was born at home in Logan, Utah to Charles Henry and Catherine Elizabeth Anderson Wakley on September 7, 1922. Beth was the youngest of four children. She was adored by her siblings. She grew up in the Logan First Ward area, where she attended school, graduating from Logan High School in 1940.
Beth attended Utah Agricultural College (UAC), which later became Utah State University (USU). She enjoyed an affiliation with the Chi Omega Sorority during her time at UAC. Beth graduated from UAC with a degree in Sociology in 1944. Beth then worked as a social worker for the American Red Cross from 1944 to 1946 in Ogden, Utah.
While attending UAC she met and fell in love with her sweetheart, S Paul Holmgren. They were married on November 15, 1946 in the Logan, Utah Temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Beth and Paul made their home in Bear River City, Utah where they raised five children: Spencer Paul (Jan Schmutz) Holmgren Jr., Bear River City, UT; Charles Wakley Holmgren, Bear River City, UT; Jane (Kerry) Smith, North Ogden, UT; Nancy (Rick) Lorenzen, Arvada, CO; and Katherine Passey, North Ogden, UT.
While raising her family, Beth returned to USU and obtained a teaching certificate and was later hired by the Box Elder School District. She taught at Corinne Elementary and Bear River City Elementary for 23 years. She relished in her students’ progress and accomplishments over the years. While teaching, she was a member of the professional educator’s society, Delta Kappa Gamma.
Beth was always interested in and an active partner on the farm from the time she married S Paul and through the years with her sons.
Beth was active in the Bear River City wards of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, serving in the Primary and Scouting organizations, the Mutual Improvement Association, singing in the Ward Choir, and serving in the Relief Society organization, including as the Relief Society President. Beth also enjoyed a membership with the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers.
Beth lived her life with great kindness and thoughtful attention to all those around her. When family and friends visited her, she carefully focused the conversation on them. After visiting with Beth, you walked away feeling loved. Even more special, when you came to visit again, she remembered details about your life and inquired after them. She leaves behind a legacy of love, tenderness, and Christlike care for all who knew her.
Beth is preceded in death by her parents and siblings, Dorothy (Bill) Bingham, Mildred (Allen) Meikle, and Ralph C (Evelyn) Wakley, as well as by her husband, S Paul, from whom she was separated by death for over 33 years.
Beth is survived by her five children, 15 grandchildren, 13 great-grandchildren, and 18 nieces and nephews.
At Mom’s request and due to the COVID-19 pandemic, only close family are invited to attend the graveside service.
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