“It’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years,” said Betty Bacon. The senior citizens in our community have tremendous amounts of wisdom and advice to give the younger generation and I was honored to be able to listen to Betty Bacon’s story.
Betty was born on February 14, 1927 in Decatur, Nebraska, “on the farm!” As a child Betty moved to Omaha, Nebraska with her family. Her father fixed automobiles for seven years and then decided it was time to move back. When they arrived back, Betty said that life was very different. They had no water or electricity. Soon after arriving, she went to country school until 8th grade. She then attended high school at Blackbird High.
After finishing high school, she got married and had two boys and two girls. She was a stay at home mom up until all her kids finished high school and loved every minute of it. Once she was kid free, she decided to pick up a job in Lyons. She worked at the Branding Iron as a hostess.
Betty is very proud of her family and how she raised them. She said they are one of her biggest successes in life and is very thankful they are still around. “Keep your family close because they are what really matters in life,” says Betty. Betty doesn’t have many regrets in her life. She had a very happy life after her marriage.
One regret she does have is not going to college. When she was younger she wanted to become a beautician and wishes she would have pursued it. Nonetheless she is happy with the route she took and the way life took her by surprise.
We might say that graduating high school or getting our first car could be the most exciting time in our lives, but for Betty this was the day she got a pony. She got her pony when she was a young girl and she rode it everywhere. She didn’t have to worry about a thing when she had her pony. “That was one of my happy days,” she said about getting her precious pony.
Throughout the years our community has not stayed the same. As Betty remembers, a lot has changed. Everything is motorized now and there are no more horse and buggies. Betty learned to drive when she was just 14 and got to drive around with no worries. Now a days you have to go through a whole process to even begin to drive. It’s much harder than back then.
Some lessons that Betty has learned include never taking anything for granted and valuing everything you have in your life because it could easily slip away and be gone. Betty’s advice is, “Look forward towards your career, because you’re gonna want to do something with your life. You just gotta follow your heart.”
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