Elizabeth Jean Bacher “Betty” died peacefully in her sleep on April 30, 2021 at the age of 96.
Betty loved life and lived an “extraordinary one” with her beloved husband Paul Krapf Bacher for 64 years. Together they shared a strong faith in Jesus which guided everything in their lives together. Betty held an insatiable curiosity about the world and the many people around her which carved her path in life. She was a devoted mother to her four sons and a doting grandmother to her seven grandchildren and six great grandchildren who provided the true meaning to her life.
Betty was the daughter of the late Mildred Edith Pacelli and Eugene A. Pacelli. She is survived by her sons: Jeffery Bacher (Elida), Mark Bacher (Jeff), Jody Bacher (Allison) and David Bacher; granddaughters: Tara McNulty, Victoria Paul (Norris), Kathryn Bacher Meaney (Dan), Lauren Bacher; grandsons: Jonathan Bacher (Courtney), Kyle Bacher (Julianne), Ryan Bacher; and great- grandchildren: Mason, Lilly, Reese, Miles, Cody, and a soon to be born great - grandson. She is also survived by nieces Jane Conlon (James) and Suzanne Riley (Marty) and their children.
For Betty, family was paramount, whether being there for her four sons no matter what, or with Paul in following the grandchildren in their many sports. Whether it be in the rain or sunshine, for football, basketball, baseball, crew, riding events, school plays and concerts, or dance and music recitals, they were always there. The many get togethers were her treasures, never missing a birthday or holiday, and 54 straight beach week years at Fenwick Island to celebrate Father’s Day with the entire family “and their friends”. Equally, she loved entertaining her diverse host of friends and neighbors as well as extended family. For Mom and Dad, every circle of friends, family, church, and neighbors were always collectively included, and many times combined in celebrations, holidays, parties, and special events. Together they delighted in creating Christmas magic with their unique original displays for visitors of all ages. If you knew Betty, you knew her Christmas traditions.
Betty graduated from Wilmington High School in 1942 and attended the University of Delaware and the University of Pennsylvania. Her professional careers included several years as layout artist for and feature writer for the Wilmington Morning News and The Sunday Star, Real Estate Agent, Program Director for the Wilmington Senior Center (10 years), and Co-Owner and Executive Vice President of Four Seasons Tours and Travel. While her volunteer contributions were numerous, some include writing publicity material for charity and civic organizations, neighborhood entertainment organizing (plays and events), Alcoholics Anonymous Counseling, and most important; a lifetime of service to Zion Lutheran Church in leadership capacities. Beyond her career and volunteer endeavors, Betty spent many years as a “stay-at -home-mom” during her children’s formative years.
Betty’s passion was art and music. She followed her dreams as a creative and talented writer, painter, and singer. She sang with the Brandywiners, Wilmington Opera Society, was a member of the Wilmington Drama League, and sang professionally for several Episcopal Churches in Wilmington and New Castle and sang with her beloved Zion choir for over 65 years. Those who knew her will remember her original musical productions “The Fastnacht Follies” produced annually for Zion. Betty also founded and directed a large chorus of Senior Citizens known as “The Great Day Singers” who performed in area nursing homes. Schools, and community functions for over 25 years.
Betty studied painting under Ed Loper and Jane Gardener at the University of Delaware and exhibited in many art shows including “group” and “one woman shows”. Her talents expanded beyond the canvas to include writing and illustrating children’s books, and her “one of a kind” personally designed greeting cards with each one hand painted and sent to family and friends every Christmas for 71 years. Her avid interest in photography aligned well with her passion for travel, visiting every continent of the world except, Antarctica, and going places no one else would go whether in a time war, famine, or civil unrest. She loved world cultures and meeting the real people behind those cultures and visited the world in the many “off the beaten path” sites not as a tourist, rather a traveler in search of a better understanding of our fellow man in our life’s journey. Her joy was sharing her adventures with family, friends, and community organizations by creating DVDs which included music and narrative. Betty was a strong woman, one definitely “before her time”, a very unique woman to carve her own path and not one to be defined by other’s standards. Her interests in world culture included American Politics where she spent many an evening debating politics with either of her twin sons until the age of 93.
But the core of her being was simple, it was her family, her faith, her friends, her church, and her Lord. What more could anyone ask of a gracious God who showered her with the true love of her life, her husband Paul, her wonderful children and spouses, her “apple of her eye” grandchildren and great-grandchildren, talents that she could share and the many opportunities to truly enjoy what this world has to offer.
The family would like to thank many for the kind and empathetic care we received from Kentmere Nursing Home and The Lorelton where Mom spent her last three years and to thank the many from Compassionate Care who were with us and Mom at the end of her life’s journey.
A visitation will be held 10 – 11am Wednesday, May 26 at Unity (formerly Zion) Lutheran Church 2101 Lancaster Avenue, Wilmington, Delaware 19805 followed at 11:30 by a funeral service. The interment will be held privately. In lieu of flowers, the family requests contributions be made to Lutheran Community Services, care of Rob Gurnee, 2809 Baynard Blvd. Wilmington Delaware 19802. Funeral arrangements by McCrery & Harra.
Never rich in material possessions, she, and in her own words, was “Wealthy beyond compare. A life well lived.”