This past weekend, former house mother, Betty Hendrickson celebrated her 90th birthday party at the Community Center of the National Home.
Affectionately known as Grandma Betty, Hendrickson moved to the National Home in 1965 with her five children after being widowed. Her husband, a marine, died suddenly from a cerebral hemorrhage, leaving her with five children ranging from a year and a half to seventeen.
Her eldest daughter graduated that year and went away to college, and for the remainder of her thirteen years living at the National Home as a house parent, Betty had a full house, raising eight children at a time!
After leaving the National Home, Betty remained in the Eaton Rapids area and worked for years at the local grocery store. She was stationed at the back entrance and made it her priority to deter would-be shoplifters. "I was a force to be reckoned with!" she remarked.
To her kids, she is remembered as being strict and loving and her birthday celebration was filled with her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren who were eager to share stories about how funny and wonderful Betty is.
Happy Birthday, Betty!