Mike Bettasso ‘70 of Princeton, Illinois died Monday October 16, 2023. He was 75. Mike majored in Business Administration and Insurance and was active in Tau Kappa Epsilon Alpha chapter at Illinois Wesleyan University. While attending Wesleyan, Mike lettered in football and track and field. After graduating, Mike worked with his father at Bettasso Insurance Services and eventually became President and owner. Mike was an active member in the community of Princeton and was a member of the Princeton Public Library Board for many years. His favorite pastimes were playing euchre and being with friends and family. He is survived by two daughters, six grandchildren, a sister, and brothers Frank ‘73 and George. You can read more about Michael here.
Susan Krause ’70, age 74, passed away at Richwood Nursing & Rehab, a caring and loving facility, on Friday, September 15, 2023, with family by her side.
Susan was a born nurturer and fiercely loved her family, friends, music students and her church families. Even though Susan never had her own children, she was a mother figure to many kids, starting with her own nieces and nephews as well as her cousins’ children. She taught preschool music in many daycares for years in the Louisville area. She also had thousands of private piano students both young and old. Miss Susan was beloved by all of them.
Susan took great joy in making people feel special and cared for. She loved giving gifts and especially enjoyed sending greeting cards for every occasion. She also enjoyed cooking and loved trying new recipes from her many cookbooks. She had a passion for baking homemade Christmas cookies for her piano students and each student received an entire plate of cookies!
Susan graduated from LaSalle-Peru High School where her music career actually started. She played piano beautifully with the school plays and operettas. She went on to study piano performance at Illinois Wesleyan University. She then finished her university studies in history, philosophy, and music at University of Louisville, where she also studied abroad in England. Click here to view Susan’s full obituary.
Vicki Cox ’70 of East Peoria passed away on March 21st, 2023. Vicki was born to Francis W. “Bill” Cox and Helen Messer Cox on January 22, 1948. She attended East Peoria grade schools and East Peoria Community High School, graduating in 1966, and Illinois Wesleyan, graduating in 1970. While in college, she was an active member of Sigma Alpha Iota Music Fraternity. She taught music in Delavan for eight years before working for Freeman United, P.J. Hoerr, Peoria Black Top, and Mitsubishi from 1998 to 2010 when she retired.
Throughout her life, Vicki’s passion was music. Starting with piano as a child, Vicki was a lifelong musician. She was most recently a percussionist with the Peoria Area Senior Citizen Band in 2022. She was a member of Sweet Adelines International for 52 years, competing with the Pekin Sweet Adeline Chorus, Belles of Harmony, and the Heart of Illinois Chorus. In the Hearts, she performed in the 5th Place International Chorus. Additionally, she competed with Crossroads Quartet, winning Regional 1st Place. She served as Co-Director of the Belles, and Assistant Director of HOI. She sang for four years with Morton Civic Chorus and served as choir director and in the bell chorus for First United Methodist Church in East Peoria directing their Christmas Cantata the day before she was hospitalized.
David Goss ’70 recently published a book From Spectacle-Making Trade to Scholarly Profession. You can find more information about the book here.
From Spectacle-Making Trade to Scholarly Profession takes a look at the long span of optometry history, with a primary focus on the United States, examining its path from spectacle making to its current status as a profession with strong academic standing integrated into today’s healthcare system. Along with an overview of the history of optometry from the invention of spectacles to recent years, the book considers the maturation of the optometric examination from simple trial and error of spectacles to today’s comprehensive eye and vision examination; the history of optometric education from the brief instructional programs offered in the late nineteenth century to the challenging academic programs of the present; and the increasing sophistication of optometric publications. Optometrists and other readers will gain an appreciation for the struggles, advancements, and contributions of optometry.
In the past two years we’ve witnessed the Titan community come together in new ways to share stories, expertise, and friendship. However, we have long awaited the chance to welcome you back to campus for a true Illinois Wesleyan Homecoming! We look forward to sharing a meal, a drink, and a story with all of you in person, September 23-25, 2022.
Click here for a full schedule of events and to register.
Dr. Timmothy Holt ’70 of Chicago died May 1, 2022. He was 73. Timm was a physician, entrepreneur, novelist, poet, playwright, activist, globetrotter, deacon and father. He majored in sociology at Illinois Wesleyan, and went on to earn a master’s degree at Roosevelt University and a doctorate at Loyola University School of Medicine. As a physician of geriatric medicine, Timm developed a new philosophy for care, and he supported many families through their loved ones’ final days. After retiring from practice, Timm explored creative and spiritual interests. He wrote and published a novel, a book of poetry, and he authored multiple plays performed at the Marigny Theatre in New Orleans. He most recently celebrated ordination into the Sacred Order of Deacons in the Episcopal Diocese of Chicago; he served as a deacon at Saint Martin’s Episcopal Church in Chicago. Timm was a proud father who shared his love of genealogy, theatre, travel and adventure with his children. He is survived by his friend and mother of his children Nancy (Heisterberg) Lewis ’70, two children, including Jennifer Holt ’97, and many extended family members. You can read more here.
George McClure ’70 of Normal, passed away on Friday, March 4, 2022, at Mason City Area Nursing Home. He was born on March 5, 1948, in Dyersburg, TN, to Stephen and Laura (Steele) McClure. He is survived by seven siblings: Mary Skoog, Joe McClure, Stephanie Hayes, Julie Strohmeier, Robin McClure, Patricia Nelms and John McClure. He was preceded in death by his parents and his brother Paul. George was a 1966 graduate of Trinity High School in Bloomington, and received his bachelor’s degree from Illinois Wesleyan University in English Literature. He owned and operated George L. McClure & Sons Gladiolus in Havana with his brothers. He was an avid reader and enjoyed golfing.