Betty Lou McChesney Haus died peacefully in her sleep of natural causes Thursday, February 11, just shy of her 82nd birthday. She was born February 16, 1939 in Chicago, the daughter of Carolyn and Earl McChesney. She was educated in parochial schools in Chicago.
Betty attended Barat College in Lake Forest Illinois and worked in the public school system in Chicago. She also worked for a large manufacturing company in the Chicago area in human relations. It was there that she met her husband, Richard E. Haus. They were married in January of 1966.
Shortly after marriage they moved to Oregon where they shared duties with Betty’s parents on a large property with fruit trees and racehorses near Eugene. Betty managed the horse ranch. She was a licensed trainer and owner in the late sixties and early 70’s at both Portland Meadows and Yakima Meadows where their horses raced.
While in the Eugene area both Dick and Betty attended the University of Oregon from which they obtained degrees, Betty in 1974. Betty went to work for the Salem Keizer School District and taught at McNary High school until 1997 when she retired after 21 years.
She received her Master’s in Special Education from Oregon College of Education (WOU) in 1980. She received a grant in 1980 to produce a vocational education handbook for students with different abilities. She also wrote and published a cookbook for students with different abilities. She served as Speech Team Coach at McNary and attended the National Summer Institute in Forensics at the University of Iowa in 1990. She was selected for membership in the National Forensics League.
In 1986 Betty along with college professor Dan Swanson critiqued the gubernatorial debate between Neil Goldschmidt and Norma Paulus held at Willamette University for the Statesman Journal.
Active in theatrical endeavors, Betty produced shows at the Pentacle Theater and was a founding member of the Salem Theater of the Performing Arts (STOPA). She was a volunteer in helping to save and renovate the Elsinore and Grand Theaters. Active in her union, Betty served on the Executive Board of the Salem Education Association and was a life member of the National Education Association.
Betty joined Alpha Epsilon Chapter of Delta Kappa Gamma in 1989. She served as Chapter President 1996-98. For many years she served at the state level as chair of the Legislative Committee.
Betty was a member since the mid 1970’s of the Salem Branch of the American Association of University Women in which she served in many board positions, including twice as president. She served as Public Policy Chair and on the state AAUW board, advocating for equity for women and girls.
Betty also provided longtime service on the board of the Oregon Women’s Rights Coalition which was originally founded to pass the ERA in Oregon and now advocates for services for women and families and adequate state revenue. She served as president for many years.
A longtime member of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Salem, Betty did volunteer tutoring in reading at St. Joseph’s in her late 70s.
Betty always loved to travel. She traveled extensively in Europe and the British Isles, to China and Egypt. She and Dick enjoyed cruises and one especially to Egypt, Turkey, and India.
Another love for Betty was golf, and retirement offered more chances to indulge. She had a good sense of humor, loved being up on the latest in world news, and enjoyed painting and knitting.
Avid Duck fans Betty and Dick held season tickets for U of O football until Dick’s health prevented attendance. They traveled to bowl games notably the 1995 Rose Bowl. Betty never missed a Duck football game on TV after her health declined.
Betty was preceded in death by her husband, Richard, her parents, and her cousin Frances Reynolds. She is survived by stepdaughter Laura Sabby, Manley, Iowa; stepson Peter Gallup (Debbie) Charles City, Iowa; and brother-in-law Harold Haus and his children: David, Sandy (Greg), and Howard (Kathy). She is also survived by her McChesney cousins Virginia Yohe, MO; Cynthia Gribble IN; Stephen Yohe IA; and Catherine Chandhok, India, as well as five step-great grandchildren; and three great nieces and nephew and various relatives in Iowa and Illinois. She is also survived by “adopted” sister Gloria Martin (Ed) and family and longtime friend Marcia Kelley. Memorials to AAUW at www.aauw.org or by check in care of Salem Branch AAUW, PO Box 2144, Salem OR 97308. Designation of area of giving can be found on the AAUW website. Betty supported them all. Those wanting to be advised of a summer service date can email firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Marcia Kelley 503-581-8384. Assisting the family is Virgil T. Golden Funeral Service.
Guest Book Entries
May you rest in peace Betty. You will be missed by your Delta Kappa Gamma Sisters. Thank you for your contribution to Education and fighting for Women's Rights.