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We are honoring our mother, Betty Westmoreland, as she has served as a heroine to each one of us. Her life has been devoted to her family, her students, the land and her heartfelt convictions. She has been an inspiration to all of us. She taught us life's most important lessons-to place value in work and family, to give more than you receive, to help others and to fight injustice.
Betty was born to Nicholas and Eugenie Reigelsberger in 1927. She has two brothers, Frank and John Reigelsberger. She was raised near Gilmore City, Iowa, and graduated the top of her class from Rolfe High School. She went on to further her studies at the University of Northern Iowa, then known as Iowa State Teachers's College. Betty taught grade school and junior high Latin, world history, and reading for over 20 years in Fonda, Humboldt, and Lytton school districts. Her teaching skills were a gift that she shared with hundreds of students through those years. The difference she made in their lives is incalculable.
During the 1980's when our state was suffering from the farm crisis, Betty answered the call. She was a strong advocate for the preservation of the family farm. She spoke on numerous occasions to all types of organizations for the need to maintain our rural way of life. Her voice and strength were a comfort and inspiration to many.
She married Ben Westmoreland in 1952. They have been married over forty years and still reside today on our family farm outside Albert City. They have 5 children: Paula, Maurice, John, Jean and Joan. They are both a blessing to us all.
Betty Westmoreland was and is a strong woman who taught all her children but her daughters in particular that they could accomplish anything. She taught us through example and she gave us the wisdom to realize what is truly important in life. These are gifts we can never repay but hopefully pass along.