Cover photo for Elizabeth E. "Betty" Marian's Obituary
Elizabeth E. "Betty" Marian Profile Photo

Elizabeth E. "Betty" Marian

December 18, 1922 — December 16, 2023


Elizabeth E. "Betty" Marian

Hastings resident Elizabeth E. Betty” Marian, passed away on Saturday, December 16, 2023, at Perkins Pavilion, Good Samaritan Village, Hastings, Nebraska. She was two days shy of turning 101. 


Private burial will be at Parkview Cemetery in Hastings. A Celebration of Life gathering will be scheduled at a later date. Memorials may be given to the First United Methodist Church in Hastings. Condolences may be sent to the family at Livingston Butler Volland Funeral Home & Cremation Center is serving the family.

Betty was born December 18, 1922, to Adolf & Henrietta (Heidemann) Wesch in Niobrara, Nebraska. The family moved to North Bend, Nebraska where Betty attended high school, graduating in 1939. After attending Concordia Teachers College for 2 years, Betty taught in parochial schools in Battle Creek and Schuyler.

In 1943, Betty married Leonard Wilke and had a daughter Mary Jane, who was only 14 months old when Leonard died in Okinawa, Japan, serving in WWII. On a trip to Hastings, Betty met Melvin Marian, who had recently returned from service in the Pacific. They married on December 18, 1946, in North Bend and spent the rest of their lives together in Hastings. In 1960, when the youngest of their four children was in elementary school, Betty enrolled at Hastings College to earn a teaching credential. From 1963 to 1986 she taught at Hawthorne Elementary School, specializing in science, spelling, and the “lost art” of cursive penmanship.

Betty was active in the Friendly Dozen Extension Club, honing her skills in cooking and baking. She enjoyed making and gifting handmade crafts. For many years, she and Melvin loved ballroom dancing, and she supported his interest in private aviation, helping to host EAA fly-ins at the Hastings airport.

When her balance and mobility became challenging, Betty moved to Perkins Pavilion, where for many years she brightened the lives of other residents and so many caring staff members.

Because Betty was the youngest child in her family and lived such a long life, she was the last of her generation for both the Wesch and Marian families, a generation profoundly shaped by the events of WWII. These included four brothers and sisters-in-law, three brothers-in-law and their wives, and her husband, Melvin, who passed at age 99 in 2019.

Betty is survived by daughter, Mary Jane Jack of Cabot, PA; son and daughter-in-law, Roger and Sheila Marian of Winchester, MA; daughter-in-law, Melinda Marian of Albany, OR; daughter and son-in-law, Janet and Paul Scardina of San Carlos, CA; as well as eight grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren, and nieces and nephews scattered around the country.      



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