Mary E. “Bette” Claytor
June 24, 1921 – November 21, 2018
Mary E. “Bette” Claytor passed away November 21, 2018, at the age of 97 ½. She was preceded in death by her husband of 54 years, Lt. Colonel David L. Claytor; her brother, Douglas; and sister, Kaye.
Bette was born to William and Myrtle Leitch in Winnipeg, Canada, on June 24, 1921. The family emigrated to the United States in 1924, settling in Detroit, Michigan. She attended Redford High School and Wayne University where she majored in vocal music. Music remained her life-long joy.
Bette married David in Grand Rapids, Michigan, in 1948. Shortly after their marriage, David, a reserve officer in the U.S. Air Force, was recalled to active duty. From that time until his retirement in 1970, they were stationed at bases in Texas, Florida, Washington, Alaska, Delaware, New Jersey, Colorado and England before final reassignment to Colorado Springs.
Always active in every community where their assignments took them, Bette led the Grey Lady programs in hospitals at McCord and Ladd Air Force Bases and sang in the choirs of each base chapel.
She established the Monument Hill branch of the Pikes Peak Library District with help from Woodmoor Sertoma Club and John Knipping, principal of the Woodmoor Middle School. She served on the Board of the World Affairs Council and was Public Relations Director of the Colorado Springs Symphony. She was awarded a patent by the U.S. Patent Office for a humidifying device.
During retirement, Bette and David made many trips abroad to see parts of the world that held special interest, including Egypt, Israel, Spain, Portugal, France, Switzerland, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, Turkey, Malta, Australia, New Zealand, and the Greek Islands.
Over her thirty-plus year membership at Broadmoor Community Church, Bette sang in the Sanctuary Choir, chaired the Arts Committee and Women’s Fellowship, served on the Board of Resource Management and was an active volunteer in the church office until her 94th year.
Bette enjoyed bridge, knitting and needlepoint. She is survived by her son, John (June) of Orlando, Florida, and Creston, North Carolina; granddaughters, Windy (Alan) Gatchell, Tammy (Kevin) Powell; great-grandchildren, Joshua, Julianna and James, all of Florida. She leaves nieces and nephews in Michigan and a host of wonderful friends who were a joy and a blessing.
A memorial service will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday, November 27, 2018 at the Broadmoor Community Church. Inurnment will be at the Meditation Glen of Broadmoor Community Church.
Memorial contributions may be directed to the Broadmoor Community Church, 315 Lake Avenue, Colorado Springs, CO 80906.