Services celebrating the life of Betty Irene Eckhardt, 94, will be held Saturday, December 9, 2017 at 2:00 p.m. at the First United Methodist Church in Cherokee, Oklahoma. Burial will follow in the Cherokee Municipal Cemetery.
Betty was born October 12, 1923, the youngest of three daughters, to Charles G. and Daisy I. Bryant, in Andover, Kansas. She was raised in Andover and graduated from Andover High School in 1941. Following graduation, she attended Kansas Business College, Wichita, Kansas.
On March 22, 1942 Betty married Wendell B. (Bruce) Eckhardt in Larned, Kansas. Shortly thereafter, he joined the U.S. Army during World War II and together they lived in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Biloxi, Mississippi, and Louisville, Kentucky. While he was deployed overseas, she was employed at Beech Aircraft in Wichita, Kansas. They returned to the Cherokee area in 1946.
Betty was a full-time mother and homemaker until she was employed by the Farmers Exchange Bank in Cherokee. She worked there from 1968 until 1985, retiring as Assistant Cashier.
She was a member of the First United Methodist Church of Cherokee, the United Methodist Women, the Oklahoma Order of Eastern Star and a Past Grand Ruth. She was also a member of the Lunch Bunch, a past member of Beta Sigma Phi Sorority and was involved in several card clubs. For the past three years, she has resided at Brookdale Senior Living in Enid, Oklahoma, where she enjoyed watching sports on TV (Texas Rangers, Oklahoma City Thunder, and Oklahoma college football teams), visiting with other residents at mealtime, and most of all, playing a mean game of Bingo. The menagerie of stuffed animals in her apartment was a testament to her skill.
Betty is survived by her four children, Nancy (James) Leslie, Enid, Keith (Mary) Eckhardt, Fairview, Anita (Rolfe) Reitz, Norman, and Ron (Karen) Eckhardt, Cherokee. Other survivors include: eleven grandchildren, four step-grandchildren, fourteen great grandchildren, thirteen step-great grandchildren, and four step-great great grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Bruce, in 2006.
Memorials may be made to the United Methodist Women, Cherokee or to the Cherokee Eastern Star Scholarship Fund through the funeral home.
Viewing will be Friday from 10:00 a.m. until 7:00 p.m. Visitation, with the Family, will be Friday evening, 5:30 to 7:00 P.M. at Lanman Funeral Home Inc. in Cherokee.