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Pearl Katherine Wilcox Bellamy

 

Pearl Katherine Wilcox Bellamy was born April 9, 1933, in Carrington, North Dakota, the only child of Clarence and Edith Wilcox. She spent the first 18 years of her life on a farm near Fessenden, North Dakota, where she thoroughly enjoyed helping her father cultivate crops, care for animals, combine grain and other farm work, and performing well her Saturday job of baking bread and desserts for the next week. She became a follower of Jesus Christ early in life and loved to sing and lead worship for her local Nazarene church. She was valedictorian of the 1951 Fessesenden High School graduating class.

Late August of 1951 found her on the train traveling to Nampa, Idaho, where she enrolled in Northwest Nazarene College (now University). Early in her junior year, she was assigned a seat in the college dining room next to a freshman named Lloyd Bellamy. They were married the following August. In 1957, she graduated Cum Laude and walked the platform eight months pregnant with her first child.

In 1958 Pearl, with husband and child, moved to Kansas City, Missouri, where three more children were welcomed into the family. In 1962, she learned of an education plan developed by Maria Montessori, and soon she and Lloyd were enrolled in a training program to become Montessori teachers. When the family moved to Olathe, Kansas, they converted an old country schoolhouse into the site of a Montessori school with Pearl as the primary teacher.

After 15 years in the Midwest, she and her family returned to Goldendale, where Pearl began a new vocation when she and Lloyd purchased the Lighthouse Christian Supply Center, which was located in the building now occupied by Dr. James Ogden. She loved running the store, but enjoyed even more when visitors needed a listening ear and/or a fervent prayer. When the store moved to the former primary school, she added a "clothing closet" for those who wished to use it. In 1980, they were invited to move to Anchorage, Alaska, to attend the Abbott Loop Christian Center church. Pearl worked in a real estate office and for an attorney firm before moving to the reception desk at the church and then transferring to the home school department of the Abbott Loop Christian School, joining her husband in the homeschool department of the Christian school. She loved that work as much as any other that she had done. It was here that she began writing music for Scripture verses which she recorded and added to the kindergarten curriculum created by her husband. Her most precious joy was listening to her grandchildren sing those songs. And now, her great-children are listening to Grandma's Bible verses put to music. The love people had for her was evidenced when she was named as the Mother of the Year for Abbott Loop Christian Center.

Afer 10 years in Alaska, she moved with Lloyd to St. Louis, Missouri, as part of a church-planting team. ALCC allowed the Bellamys to take the homeschool curriculum with them and vend it to interested families. Pearl took over the printing of the materials. It was a good idea, but it was a long time until she could look at a stubborn printer without crying! While in St. Louis, they were blessed with a move to a 4,000 square foot house, which afforded a meeting place for the church and a home for the Bellamys. One Christmas while in that house, all of Pearl's family, children and grandchilden, came to celebrate Christ's birth at Christmas. She has always cherished that time.

Their work complete in St. Louis, Pearl and Lloyd moved again to Goldendale, dividing their time between children in Texas and the Pacific Northwest. Finally in 2007, they switched their home address to Winnsboro, Texas, living on property owned by their daughter and her husband. That time was special to Pearl as seven grandchildren lived just across the pond with visits, meals, and celebrations continually being shared. That time ended when their daughter died in 2013 and her family moved away. This brought them again back to Goldendale, where they lived with their son Larry and his wife Jodi, before moving into a house converted into a handicapped accessible home. She died on May 20, 2018.

Pearl had physical challenges in the last years of her life. There was a double bypass, a knee replacement, and the spinal stroke which caused her to be paraplegic. But she was rarely in despair, infrequently discouraged, always ready to witness and sing her Scripture songs to everyone who would listen. People left her house blessed and amazed at her attitude. Many medical people named her as their favorite patient. Even though paralyzed, Pearl could sew, do Bible study, make cards for her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. Her favorite topic of conversation was Jesus.

Pearl was preceded in death by her parents and her daughter Bonny. She is survived by her husband of 63 years; three sons: Larry (Jodi) of Goldendale, Mark (Kathy) of Springfeld, Oregon, and David (Jamie) of North Richland Hills, Texas; 17 grandchildren; and, at last count, 21 great-grandchildren.

The family wishes to thank the personnel of Klickitat Valley Health in Home health, clinic and hospital for the professional and kind demeanor toward Pearl and all of us. We also want to commend the valued and knowledgeable approach of Miss Alison in the ICU of Astria Regional Memorial Hospital in Yakima.

Services will be held Thursday, May 24, 2018, at 2 p.m. at the Father's House in Goldendale.

 

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