More Memories of Betty

Sparkling Betty prepares for a costume party.

October, 1982.


A White Rose for Betty

     I think it wise to avoid the temptation to look for paranormal signs from God or the departed, especially if one is ignorant of what to look for – or might be scared witless if successful.

     I would rather enjoy natural reminders of renewal and continuity.

     On Dec. 30, 2005, the day of Betty's memorial service, her last real estate broker, Shirley Fraser of Fernley Realty, sent a dozen roses; 11 red with a white one the middle.

     I plucked the bloom off the white rose, placed it in my coat pocket and for the rest of the day took care not to crush it amid hugs at the church. That flower is currently drying for safekeeping.

     The rose array, crisper now, still resides in our living room. A few days after we said goodbye to Betty, I noticed that the stem of the white flower was beginning to sprout about two inches below where I had clipped the bloom.

     That bud now sports about seven inches of various spring-green shoots and leaves.

     I will water and nurture the vase of fading splendor as best I can in the hope that the sprout will throw roots. If not, it will provide a nice transition toward sunnier times. The always-hopeful forsythias outside my front door stand ready to burst forth at the first hint of the normal Nevada false spring.

     I look forward to welcoming them and perhaps plant a white rose bush to keep them company this summer.



Andrew Barbano

You've met a few people like Betty in your life, but only a few. You know them – they brighten a room just by walking into it. You see that person and know that this is a beneficial spirit I will benefit from knowing.

I met Betty on April Fools Day 1976 at Pastor Thunder's Church in Carson City. Yes, his name actually was Reverend Thunder. I was emceeing a community fashion show and she was the coordinator. She handed me some cue cards to use as certain items came up.

The writing was so good that I soon found myself doing standup comedy rather than introducing the latest in ladies wear.

Betty's smile and sense of humor cross-cut her every waking hour.

She never stopped seeking the new, the cutting edge. For almost 30 years, she pleasantly put up with a guy with a time-wasting desire to watch old movies more than once.

"I've seen it" was her very practical response when I suggested something like "Casablanca." She didn't like to travel the same path twice.

She thought the 1970's were the greatest period for rock 'n' roll but was also a big fan of Eminem. Yes, my wife was a hip-hop aficionado.

Betty couldn't wait for each Tuesday's publication of the New York Times science section. She was very into the latest in electronic gadgets and passed that passion to her children.

We were both fascinated with the latest in physics. Superstring theory seems to answer so many questions and offers a bridge between faith and science. It calculates that there are 11 dimensions, maybe more, most of which we cannot see. Over 90 percent of the known universe consists of something termed "dark matter" which we have yet to find a way to analyze. That dark matter interlards and cross-cuts everything we are.

Perhaps science has finally formed the first rough picture of God, something Betty figured out long ago.

The next dimension is perhaps just one tiny vibration away, right next door.

Everyone is a bit of energy in this huge tapestry, call it what you will, God or the universe. Without each and every tiny part, that tapestry is incomplete, Betty once told me.

She advised living life to the fullest because you will only wear this suit of clothes once. There is no death, you just enter an alternative form of existence. You may come back here, you may not.

Live well, with laughter.

As e.e. cummings put it, "There's a hell of a good universe next door. Let's go!"


Look at the good in yourself rather than the negative. Don't look at what you haven't done, look toward what you have and can do.

Many people get comfortably through life with hard work, never taking chances and just being determined not to make waves. This isn't what's right for all, but good for them. They will raise kids with self-esteem and security and that's very commendable.

Some people flit through life never being serious in love or labor but only looking for leisure. They usually take from others and leave a void but this may be what's right for them.

There's really no right or wrong in life except where it comes to space. You have yours coupled with your time and if you waste it, you'll probably have to repeat it until it gets you who you need to be. It's really your script and if you're happy with your life, so be it.

But if you suddenly feel the middle point in life is leaving you unfulfilled, it’s time to maybe evaluate how you're living your life. I, personally, have life giving me a very warm feeling now and it's mainly due to seeing what's good and right around me and pulling strength from the positive – not depleting myself by grinding the negative.

And I found the way to do this goes all the way back to my childhood when I had to learn the 10 Commandments. The God thing is super strength if you need it and believe it. Love is a power unlike any other.

If I were you, I'd start keeping a small journal (not the computer) and take note each day in how you are blessed. It'll add up fast and as it grows, so will you.

If you meditate, pray or chant with the idea of wanting to change your life, it will happen.

Be sure and make it quality time and try and start out each morning and end each evening with this. Look for joy, even ecstasy, because diligent devotion will result in great feelings.

And be patient while adapting this process. Put as much time into this as you wish, but keep in mind – it's going to change you and soon the skeptical and cynical will yield to a renewed enthusiasm where your life's work is concerned.

I love you. Let me help you. Be patient with me as I get carried away and may seem pushy. I just want you to feel fulfilled and renewed and make it as painless but as genuinely real as possible.




The above was read by Rev. William Chrystal at Betty's memorial service on Dec. 30, 2005. These writings will posted in perpetuity at for anyone to read or use.


     Memories may be e-mailed for posting at this site. They will be added as they arrive, as will additional photos.


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