Bessie Mae Vandervort died Wednesday (Oct. 26, 2005) at the Hillcrest Nursing Home in McCook at the age of 97.
She was born March 8, 1908, at Quick in Frontier County, the daughter of Alfred and Mary (Shepherd) Drake. She grew up north of Perry and graduated from McCook High School in 1926.
On Oct. 16, 1926, Bessie married William Chester Vandervort at McCook and they spent their married life in McCook, where she was a waitress at the Keystone Hotel and in the summer she worked at the Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colo. She also worked for the McCook School District.
She was a lifetime member of the Assembly of God Church, a past Worthy Matron of Eureka Chapter 86 Order of Eastern Star, the Royal Neighbors and AARP. In her later years, she was active with the senior center, where she played in the Senior Center Band and was active in the McCook Pantry.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Bill on Oct. 5, 1972; one son, Eldon "Billy" Vandervort in 1955; four brothers, Lester, Harry, Victor and Harley Drake; two sisters, Nettie Gragg and Violet Drake; one granddaughter-in-law, Kay Mockry.
Bessie is survived by her daughter, Donna Mockry and husband, Orville of McCook; five grandchildren, Nancy Collins and husband, Charlie, Mary Sue Wurster and husband, Bob, Jim Mockry and wife, Julie, Randy Mockry and wife, Wanda, Robby Mockry and wife, Angela; thirteen great-grandchildren, Corey Collins and wife, Jill, Chris Collins, Codie Stephens and husband, Jason, Jamie Mockry and wife, Theresa, Cyndi Carlisle and husband, Jesse, Caitlyn, Elizabeth, Jacob and Rebecca Mockry, Colette Balderston and husband, Travis, Stacey Brown, Aleece and Sarah Messersmith; thirteen great-great-grandchildren, Coral and Jordan Collins, Noleigh and Sydnie Stephens, Aaron, Anita and James Mockry, Callie Carlisle, Lane and Kylee Brown, Deserae, Ashlyn and Riley Balderston; nieces and nephews; and many friends.
Funeral services will be Monday, 10:30 a.m., at the Assembly of God Church in McCook with the Rev. John Albrecht officiating. Interment will be in the Riverview Cemetery in McCook.
Memorials may be given in her name and friends may call at Herrmann Funeral Home in McCook, which is in charge of arrangements.