Feb. 21, 1920 Lawrence Essex County Massachusetts, USA
Jan. 7, 2013 Camden Camden County New Jersey, USA
Grace Rettew BEITTEL Barrickman Cornforth was the fifth of 7 children (5 lived past infancy) of Roy David Beittel, Sr. and Irene Ella Rettew Beittel. Grace was a graduate of Guilford College in NC (class of 1941). Her grade point average was 4.0 and that exempted her from final examinations. She was elected to Who's Who among Students in American Universities and Colleges.** In her Senior year she was a member of the May Court. During that period, she had a boyfriend who she broke off with around 1945 named "Ted". Theodore (Ted) M Mills was a conscientious objector and he went to Mexico and China and served as an ambulance driver during the war. After graduating from college she would work at Strawbridge & Clothier in Philadelphia, PA, She would not be married for the first time until 1960.
She never had any formal training in accounting, yet taught herself accounting which led her to become Assistant Controller of Strawbridge & Clothier Department Stores in Philadelphia, PA. This was quite an accomplishment in a time when women in business were not a common occurrence. Early in her career the Treasurer told her he did not approve of women in major executive positions, but he could no longer ignore her ability.
At age 40 she married Vernon Barrickman, a widower, who passed away suddenly a year after their marriage. (shot himself).
She adopted Joan Wingert Kelly, her secretary at Strawbridge & Clothier, as an adult and was extremely good to Joan and her family.
Later in life, she married Robert G. Cornforth, Sr. and continued to travel extensively with Bob. Grace was an avid collector of antiques and especially Royal Bayreuth porcelain figurals. She was an avid gardener and had built a beautiful home in Cinnaminson, New Jersey. In another time Grace might have been an architect.
Obituary Grace B. Cornforth Passed away on January 7, 2013, (nee Beittel) Beloved wife of the late Robert and dear adopted mother of Joan Kelly of Glenside PA. Loving grandmother of Susan, Brendan (Emily) and Michael. Also survived by nephew and nieces David R. Beittel, Don W. Beittel, Elizabeth Shuler, John Lingard, Susan Walsh, Sandra Whiteside and Bennett Boyles.
Mrs. Cornforth was an active member of Grace Episcopal Church in Merchantville for several years and retired as an assistant controller for Strawbridge & Clothier in Phila. after 40 years.
Relatives & friends of the family are kindly invited to attend her Memorial Service Saturday January 19, 2013 11 AM at Grace Episcopal Church, 7 E. Main St. Merchatville NJ 08109. In lieu of flowers donations in her memory to the church preferred.
** "Each year, a select group of students is called forward to accept one of the most prestigious awards the academic community can bestow -- selection to Who's Who Among Students . This exclusive honor is conferred by more than 1,900 schools in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Through our years of serving higher education, Who's Who Among Students has become one of the most highly regarded and long-standing honors programs in the nation, having earned the overwhelming respect of college faculties and administrations. And for the students - the outstanding campus leaders of the year - national recognition by the Who's Who program marks a pinnacle of scholastic achievement."