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Life Story / Obituary
Betty Meyle was a wonderful, caring, and compassionate wife, mother, and grandmother. Never one to remain idle, Betty was an active woman who enjoyed being around people. Her love for her family was evident in her ability to spoil each and every one of them over the years. Nothing brought her greater joy than knowing that they were well cared for and well fed! Betty leaves behind a wonderful collection of memories for her family to treasure for generations to come.
The year 1923 was known for its economic prosperity. The first home game was played at Yankee Stadium between the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox. The nation was seeing large scale industrial growth and the world’s first portable radio was developed. Time Magazine made its debut and Jazz music was exploding. During a promising time in our nation’s history, Otis and Ola (Gildea) Gage eagerly welcomed home their newborn daughter, Betty on December 6, 1923, in Kalamazoo, Michigan. One of three children, her birth brought her parents great joy and happiness.
Betty lived a typical childhood of the times. Growing up in Kalamazoo, she attended local schools and enjoyed sharing her fair part of the mischief with her siblings. With her parents working as fruit farmers in Texas Township, Betty learned the value of a hard day’s work at an early age. Pitching in around the house and helping complete chores was standard for those times. Betty learned her way around the kitchen as a young adolescent and perfected her talents well into her adult years. Graduating with the Class of 1942 from Portage High School, Betty set her sights on marrying the man of her dreams, Harold Meyle. They met through her cousin who was dating Harold’s brother and the rest was history. Eager to settle down they were joined in marriage on July 17, 1942. When Harold went away to fight in WWII, she went to work crafting guitars at the Gibson Guitar company. The company kept this a secret for many years until a local author uncovered the truth about Betty and several other women known as the “Kalamazoo Gals,” who strung instruments for several years and beyond. Betty loved the work and remained gainfully employed with Gibson as secretary for the Vice President for more than twenty years.
She and Harold raised their only son, Ronald, who was their pride and joy. As a mother, she was the most giving person always ensuring that he never went without. At the same time, she was quite savvy with stretching their money so they could enjoy taking family trips together or saving up for home improvements. They cherished many years of happiness and celebrations as Ron joined in marriage to Sherrie and continued adding to their family through the birth of their two grandsons, Kevin and Jason. Anytime she was gathered with her family, her heart was content. She loved to make special cakes for each and every gathering known for their elaborate detail and delicious and buttery frosting. In addition to her fabulous cakes, Betty also loved to cook and loved to bring her homemade dishes, especially her potato salad. When she was blessed with two great-grandchildren, she was over the moon. She had always wanted a larger family and was thrilled to have so much love surrounding her whenever they were all together.
Once she and Harold had retired they moved to the beautiful state of Florida traveling back for five weeks out of the summers when the temperatures down south grew too hot. For twenty years, they both loved combing the beach as well as joining other couples for dinner out. She and Harold also loved to travel and see the beautiful spots throughout the United States as well over the years. When they weren’t socializing, Betty was most often curled up with a good book whether they were traveling or at home. No greater testimony of her love for Harold were the years she cared for him during his time suffering from dementia. She tenderly cared for him until she was no longer able to do so and he moved into Portage Tendercare. Known for being a smart, strong, independent woman with an occasional stubborn side, Betty will undoubtedly be missed by her loving family and special friends. May all who knew and loved her be comforted in knowing that she lived her life to the fullest and is now at peace.
Betty L. Meyle, age 95, of Kalamazoo, Michigan died peacefully Saturday, April 20, 2019, at Rose Arbor Hospice. Betty was preceded in death by her husband, Harold Meyle, in 2011 and siblings: Bonnie and Jack Ickes, and Howard and Lillian Gage. Surviving are her son, Ronald (Sherrie) Meyle; two grandsons: Kevin (Sheila) Meyle and Jason Meyle (Tamara Diamond); two great-grandchildren: Logan and Kyla Meyle and many nieces and nephews. Cremation will take place. Visit with family and friends while sharing food and drinks on Friday, May 10, 2019, from 5-7 PM with a toast at 6 PM at Betzler Life Story Funeral Home, 6080 Stadium Drive, Kalamazoo (269) 375-2900. A private burial will take place at Hope Cemetery. Please visit Betty’s personal web page at www.betzlerfuneralhome.com, where you can archive a favorite memory or photo and sign her online guestbook before coming to the funeral home. Memorial contributions may be made to Rose Arbor Hospice.