Community mourns death of Mary “Mo” Beach

By Kelli Ameling • Last Updated 10:25 am on Thursday, December 20, 2012

Mary “Mo” Beach

GREENVILLE — A local woman spent most of her life bettering the community by helping others, taking part in organizations and making a difference.

Mary Theresa “Mo” Beach, 68, of Stanton, died Tuesday at the Meijer Heart Center in Grand Rapids.

She was born in 1944 in Mullingar, Ireland, and married Charles W.E. Beach Jr. on Aug. 17, 1974, at Hope Lutheran Church at Dickerson Lake, Stanton.

On Oct. 6, 1994, Beach became an United States citizen in Dayton, Ohio.

Beach was the executive director of the Montcalm County Habitat for Humanity and previously worked as the pastor’s secretary at Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Fairhope, Ohio. She became a member of Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Lakeview.

According to Montcalm County Habitat for Humanity employee Dan Eagles, Beach became director of the organization in 2006, but before that she volunteered with Habitat for Humanity for at least three years.

“She volunteered on almost a daily basis,” Eagles said.

Doug Hinken, city representative on the Habitat for Humanity board, said Beach used enthusiasm and energy as she approached not only her job, but her community involvement.

“She is a person of notable character and an example to us all of selfless serving,” Hinken said.

For Beach, one of her traits was being able to motivate people and doing so in a “very unobtrusive way,” Hinken said.

One of the many events she was dedicated to through her role at Habitat for Humanity was planning the Spin the Spokes event that raised money for family-housing projects.

“People know her to be honest, trustworthy and sincerely concerned for their own well being,” Hinken said.

Although she was dedicated to reaching out to those in need throughout the county, Beach worked to make difference by volunteering her time to local committees. Beach spent five years serving on the Danish Festival Board as the arts and crafts director.

“When the arts and crafts directorship became vacant, Mo said to me ‘I will do it,’ and there was no looking back,” recalled Danish Festival Executive Director Pam Jorae.

Jorae said Beach’s role as director fit her because of her love of working with people.

Both Hinken and Jorae said Beach was always willing to learn what she did not know, which showed them her determination to never give up.

“She almost always had a big smile on her face,” Jorae said. “I was honored to have her on our Danish Festival team; I will miss her.”

Funeral services for Beach will be noon Saturday at Mount Calvary Lutheran Church in Greenville. Visitation will be from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday at Hurst Funeral Home, Greenville, and 11 a.m. Saturday at the church.

“I am convinced that she trusts Jesus Christ with her soul, and therefore, she will live,” Hinken said. “It may not be here with us in this present world, but she will live, and that is really what is most important after all.”

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