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Virginia "Ginger" Betts

Virginia (Ginger) Rae Betts was born on September 9, 1943 in Fort Des Moines to Ruby and Harold Feith. After the war, the family moved to Fort Hood, Texas. Once Harold retired from the United States Army, they returned to Iowa where she remained, marrying the love of her life, Dale Betts, on May 26th, 1961.


Ginger attended Woodrow Wilson Junior High and Des Moines East High School. She loved her meetings for class reunions and her EHS classmates. After marrying her love, Dale, she had three children; Beth, Linn, and Shelley. Ginger and Dale also helped raise their niece, Dawn Ellen. Ginger was very active with PTA at McKee, Hoyt, and East High School as her children grew. She and a small group of friends made up the slate of officers each of the years her children were in school. She was a master of Fun Nights, Fundraisers, and running meetings by Robert’s Rules. She took parenting very seriously and was present at every moment in her childrens’ lives.


Ginger worked for Metro Waste Authority for over 30 years. She was a diligent worker and took great pride in her ten key and typing skills. Ginger never missed a day of work and always instilled in her children and family the notion that hard work always pays. She was a great role model to everyone around her, especially her children and the children in the neighborhood.


Ginger’s grandchildren held a very special place in her heart. Casey Dale was born shortly after Dale’s death and stayed by her side for the next 34 years, taking care of her daily until her death. She adored all of her grandchildren; Casey, Devon, Cody, Austin, Spencer, and Grace E. They were her light and she never missed a ballgame or dance event.


Ginger blessed many with her amazing ability to decorate a cake for any special occasion. She made thousands of cakes and each one had special details. She also taught cake decorating classes through DMPS and the Community Center. None of us could compare to her talent, but she was always good for a joke and plenty of encouragement.


Ginger loved flowers, babies, music of all types, fast cars, and a good conversation. She would share anything she had with anyone and would pick up three hitch-hikers at a time in the 70’s. She never left the house without looking fabulous and often wore her signature pearls for fancy events.


Ginger is preceded in death by her parents, loving husband, Dale, brothers Bud and Ralph, sister Mary, and her precious dog, Teddy; as well as her brother’s in law Wes, Robert, Jack, LeRoy, and sister in law, Darlene, and nephew Michael.


Ginger is survived by her children; Beth, Linn, and Shelley; and grandchildren, Casey, Cody, Devon, Austin, Spencer, and Grace, and great grandchildren Dorian, Adrian, and Quincy. She is also survived by her sister, Judy Choate, and sisters- in- law, Beverly Betts and Betty Betts, along with many nieces and nephews that she loved dearly.