Phelan, Mary Elizabeth (Betty)
Never has there been a kinder, more loving soul than Betty Phelan. Mary Elizabeth (Betty) Phelan, 83, of 100 Thompson Dr. SE, Cedar Rapids, died Tuesday, Nov. 6, 2012, in her home surrounded by her loving family. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Friday, Nov. 9, at St. Matthew Catholic Church by the Rev. David Beckman. Visitation will be from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8, at Cedar Memorial Park Funeral Home. A Celebration of Life service will be held at 6:30 p.m.
Survivors include her husband, Paul; her children, Stephen Phelan (Jenifer), Thomas R. Phelan (Kathy), Mary Beth Helgens (Bob), Michael Phelan (Jeannine) and Paul Phelan (Kathy); 14 grandchildren; and three great grandchildren.
Betty was preceded in death by her son, Peter, twin brother of Paul Jr. ; her parents, Charles and Mary Schwinn; and brothers, Dr. Peter Schwinn, Don Schwinn and the Rev. Thomas Schwinn.
Betty was born on April 21, 1929, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, to Charles and Mary Schwinn. She attended school at Mount Sinsinawa Academy, Franklin High School, Saint Therese College and Mercy School of Nursing.
Betty and Paul were married in 1950 and were blessed with 62 years of marriage. Betty was a marvelous, caring stay at home mother with many volunteer activities. She was active in her children’s schools, the Junior League of Cedar Rapids, retreat activities at her church and she served on the Tanager Board for many years.
One of Betty’s passions was women’s fashion. She enjoyed the retail industry and opened her own boutique, Phelan’s Added Touch, with Mary Merz in 1983, helping Phelan’s Interiors in their formative years. She managed the store until she retired 12 years later.
Betty was a God loving, humble, supportive person, always concerned with her children and grandchildren. Betty was a loving wife, mother, grandmother, sister, daughter and a supportive friend. Betty Boop’s endearing wit, charm and wisdom will be greatly missed.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Peter Phelan Memorial Scholarship at Creighton University in Omaha, Neb., 2500 California Plaza, Omaha, NE 68102.
Betty was a lifelong member of the Catholic Church.
Online condolences may be shared at: Cedar Memorial, www.cedarmemorial.com under obituaries.
The family would like to extend special thanks to Mercy Medical Center, Mercy Home Health Care, Mercy Palliative Care and Hospice of Mercy. Betty was the recipient of the expert and compassionate Mercy Touch. Words are inadequate at expressing our appreciation.
Betty, Your Family adores you. You have made our lives much more than we could have possibly hoped for. We have been blessed to have you in our lives. We continue to give thanks and praise to God.
Published in The Gazette Nov. 8, 2012.