|Honored by:||Dawn Connet|
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Beulah Mae McClurg was born in 1905 and raised in rural Dallas and Polk counties. After completion of high school she attended Iowa State College and received training in home economics and education. After completion of her Iowa State education, she was employed as a teacher and girls athletic coach at the Van Horne schools in Benton County.
She was married to Elmo Walter of Vinton in 1928, and then took a hiatus from her teaching career, to focus on homemaking and raising their daughter, Elizabeth Walter. She encouraged her daughter to become educated as well, and "Betty" eventually became a Registered Nurse on the staff of the University Hospitals in Iowa City and later Obstetrical Nursing supervisor at St. Luke's Hospital in Cedar Rapids.
After her daughter became an adult, Beulah entered a new phase of her life, in which she sought additional educational opportunities through Iowa Regents universities enabling her to again pursue teaching--this time at the Braille & Sight Saving School in Vinton. She and her husband also took an active role in caring for their grandchildren, Dawn Connet & Michael Connet of Cedar Rapids.
After the death of her husband and daughter in the early 1970s, Beulah became an even larger influence with her grandchildren and was an important influence in her granddaughter’s decision to attend--and complete--her Iowa State University education. In addition to traveling (when she felt physically able), reading, listening to all kinds of music, and fishing, Beulah in her later years pursued creative writing opportunities to keep her mind active. She also enjoyed family holidays and particularly prized visits to her Vinton home throughout the years by her grandchildren, their friends and spouses, and her sisters and their families. She always used these opportunities to show off skills (and sometimes recipes) from her Iowa State days.
Perhaps Beulah's biggest unfulfilled wish at the end of her life in 1987, was the failure of her grandchildren to produce great-grandchildren for her to educate and enjoy--a problem since rectified by the birth of Paul Brian Connet in 1990, Evan Connet Nichols in 1991, and Grace Connet Nichols in 1994. Beulah McClurg Walter's legacy to her great-grandchildren includes her belief in the importance of higher education, her appreciation for life-long learning including the creative arts, her appreciation for nature and the priority she joyfully gave to family needs throughout her life.
This information on the life of Beulah McClurg Walter is submitted to the Catt Center Plaza of Heroines on behalf of Grace Connet Nichols by her parents, Dawn Connet and Greg Nichols of West Des Moines.
Submitted on May 10, 1995