Elizabeth Frances Kidwell Gauger passed away peacefully on Friday, May 17, 2019, surrounded by her loving family. “Betty” was born July 29, 1921 in Litchfield, Minnesota and grew up in Minneapolis. She attended Holy Angels High School where she wrote the original school song that is still sung today. Always ahead of her time, she distributed The Catholic Worker paper and volunteered at Pillsbury Settlement House. While attending St. Catherine’s where she majored in Sociology and Music, she met the love of her life, Vic Gauger. They relocated to San Diego where they married and had their first of eight children. One of three married students, Betty completed her studies and received her degree at San Diego State College, a point of pride for the rest of her life. Post-war time, she volunteered many hours at the American Red Cross. Upon moving to Park Ridge in 1952, Betty and Vic, and their seven daughters and one son were members of the St. Paul of the Cross school and parish. After Vic died in 1985, Betty began work there as parish secretary and liturgical pianist and organist for over twenty years. She became a consummate accompanist in high demand for musicals, church choirs and school productions. Even though she was an only child, Betty’s life had an abundance of family and friends, and her house was always filled with music, sports, books, animals, laughter and unconditional love. Betty’s generous spirit meant that her door was always open to everyone. She is survived by her eight children, Mary Quinn (Mike), Sally Fortier (Larry), Susie Maltz (Roger), Ginny McGaughey, Elizabeth Gauger, Lucile Gauger, Vic Gauger Jr (Nancy nee Barlow), and Laurie Gauger; nineteen grandchildren, Michael, Kati, Anne, Colleen, Molly, Rebecca, Billy, Tracy, Rachel, Michael, Chris, Virginia, Zach, Colette, Kevin, Sofiya, Caroline, Eve, and Alex; fifteen great grandchildren, Killian, Jack, Payton, Olive, Cleo, Gavin, Brighton, Peyton, Kody, Kolten, Kayden, Bridget, Abigail, Caleb and Ronan.
Gathering at 9:30am | Celebratory Mass at 10:30am, Wednesday, May 22nd at St. Stephen’s Protomartyr Church, 1280 Prospect Avenue, Des Plaines, IL 60018.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to JourneyCare, www.journetcare.org, are appreciated.
In July, she will be laid to rest alongside her beloved husband Vic in Forest City, Minnesota.
We will celebrate BettyFest 2019 on the banks of the Crow River.