Deceased March 12, 2012

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In Memory

John Betts died on March 12, 2012, in Glenview, Ill.

John came to Amherst from Evanston, Ill. He joined Phi Gam and played freshman soccer, earning his numerals. He was a member of the Christian Association and worked on the Student.

During the spring semester of 1942, John enlisted in the U.S. Army. After infantry basic training and Signal Corps OCS, he was commissioned in December 1942. He spent the next two years at the Signal Intelligence Agency in Arlington, Va., and then volunteered for the infantry. He was in combat duty in Mindanao, Philippine Islands, for the rest of the war and then served as provost marshal for two prefectures in Japan. Released from active duty in 1946, he received the Combat Infantry Badge, Bronze Star and Purple Heart, plus assorted service ribbons.

Back in civilian life, John attended and graduated from the Northwestern University Law School and then practiced law with a Chicago law firm until retirement in 1988. He specialized in securities law, shopping center development and local tax litigations and was a member of the Chicago and American Bar Associations.

John was very active in the First Congregational Church, serving six years on the Board of Deacons and six years on the Board of Trustees, including four years as chairman. He also indulged in recreational activities, serving as president of the Evanston Dancing Club and captain of the senior golf team at Sunset Ridge Country Club, winning the club championship for members 70 and over.

In 1973 John married Mary Jane "Dede" Holly who brought with her a family of two sons, a daughter and three grandchildren. They had many enjoyable trips after John’s retirement. Dede died in 2002. John then moved into an excellent retirement community, which he enjoyed for the rest of his life.

Ted Heisler ’42