Betty Jane Spahr (Liggett)
Betty Jane Spahr, 91, passed away peacefully on September 17, 2022 at Aria in Oxford Crossings, Langhorne PA. She was a resident of Langhorne for many years. Betty Jane (B.J.) was born June 23, 1931 on a dairy farm outside of Indiana PA to parents William Paul and Iva Alice (Edwards) Liggett.
Betty Jane is preceded in death by her parents and three brothers, Irwin, Kenneth, and Homer Liggett, and by her husband, Rev. Dr. John H. Spahr. She is survived by her children, Charmane Spahr, Pamela Platt (Gregory), Kristofer Spahr (Mary); grandchildren, Derek Spahr (Erin), David Platt (Lauren), Michael Platt (Joanna), Lauren Radford (James) and Alexandra Spahr; and great-grandchildren, Holden Spahr, Oliver Spahr, Avalyn Radford, Sophie Platt, and Lucy Platt.
A memorial service will be held at Newtown Presbyterian Church on Saturday, October 8, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. In lieu of flowers, the family is asking for contributions to the Alzheimer’s Association, alz.org.
Our Loving Tribute
Our mother was a beautiful woman with a beautiful smile. Mom always had an innate sense of style and decorum and was beautifully dressed even when she didn’t have much money. When we were growing up, mom sewed many of our clothes and hers, even coats and dresses that matched.
Mom loved the smell of honeysuckle. She loved to laugh, meet with friends, travel, go out to dinner and plays and movies, read, do embroidery, and move furniture around. She loved vanilla ice cream - just vanilla (occasionally pecan or pistachio), vanilla milkshakes, milk chocolate covered cherries, hot dogs burned until black and hot chocolate instead of coffee.
Mom grew up on a dairy farm, so she knew how to drive a tractor, milk a cow, feed the pigs, grow vegetables, clean and cook a freshly killed chicken, and draw water from a pump. She had three brothers, so she didn’t have to do most of the work in the fields and the barn, but there were many helpers to feed. Like her mother, she became a really good cook and baker. She loved the farm but was itchy to leave it and go out into the world to see new places, do new things. Even when we were there on vacation, she said she was restless being on the farm.
Mom did not marry a minister. Our dad became one after they married, going first to college, then seminary, then a series of churches, all with children in tow. She protected our privacy and would never let him take a church where the pastor’s residence was beside the church. She had a strong faith and drew much comfort during her life from going to church and reading the bible. She started a bible study more than once where she lived and among people she knew.
Mom wanted to be a nurse when she was growing up. It was always important to her that she help people, becoming Director of Volunteers at St. Mary Hospital, working at Woods Services, being a hospice volunteer at Chandler Hall and a Deacon at Newtown Presbyterian church, visiting and taking candy to residents in assisted living and the nursing home.
Above all things, mom loved her family. She was always so very excited about any successes of her children and grandchildren, large or small. She was the kind of mom who expected the best from her children but was willing to help. The kind of mom who sent you to school when you weren’t really sick but, if you were, would go out and get favorite treats and magazines and make favorite foods. She always made everyone’s favorite foods at holiday and family dinners, and that special cake you loved for your birthday. She was the kind of grandma who was the primary babysitter, with frequent overnight visits that included going out to dinner and breakfast and shopping for toys, games, and videos that she enjoyed right along with them. Every year she invited all five of her grandchildren together to her house for a pajama party right before school started. She took such pride in her grandchildren, in their personalities, interests, and achievements. Christmas was always a big, big deal with presents, stockings, food and fun. Holidays were always at mom’s, except Thanksgiving. Greg took that one away from her because she served chicken one year. She didn’t like turkey.
Mom signed all cards to us “Much Love.” Just saying love wasn’t enough to express how she felt about her family.
In the end, every smile, every hug, every chance to make mom laugh was special because we knew that a time was coming when she would not be able to do those things. Mom always said, “Life is for the living.” Seeing what people went through during their surgeries and illnesses, she also said, “There are worse things than dying.” We are glad that mom has been freed from that worse thing, but we will miss her. We will miss her taking care of us all, celebrating everything, caring deeply.
Saturday, October 8th, 2022
Newtown Presbyterian Church
25 North Chancellor Street
Newtown, PA 18940