Beth passed from death unto life with Christ on May 8 at 3 a.m. surrounded by loved ones. Though sorrowful, we take comfort that she is no longer in pain.
Beth was born on Aug. 6, 1954 in Valley City, N.D. to Jim and Donna Nelson. The family moved to the Northwest in 1955, settling in Marysville, Wash. where her dad taught school. In 1971, due to her dad’s illness, Beth moved with her parents and three brothers to Elfrida, Ariz. where she graduated from high school and formed lifelong relationships.
After graduating from Oral Roberts University in nursing at the top of her class, she began her career at St. John’s Hospital in Tulsa, Okla. She then returned home to Washington State where she worked at Providence Hospital starting in ICU and ending last year in the recovery room after nearly 37 years of service.
She met and married Kenneth Schoonover in 1979. Ken and Beth settled on Whidbey Island and raised three children and attended South Whidbey Assembly of God.
Beth was involved in almost everything at SWAG and Island Christian Academy over the last 30 years. She was also involved in MOPS, women’s ministries, worship team, led Vacation Bible School, taught Sunday school, and was the only volunteer involved for the first 19 years of Celebrate America in Freeland.
She and Ken worked with married couples and impacted some of the most influential couples on South Whidbey. She mentored young moms, nursed at summer camp, and planned and decorated the weddings of dozens of couples. Her passion for cooking was regularly demonstrated in the meals she made for hundreds of people including the Good Cheer volunteer banquet and the ICA auction.
To say that Beth was active and involved with her family, church, work and community is an understatement. If you knew Beth, you are blessed. If you didn’t, you really missed out.
Of all these achievements, Beth was wife, mom, and “Beba” most of all.
Beth is survived by her husband, Ken; her mother Donna Royer (Jim); her daughter Kelsey (Nathan) Chambers and their children, Elizabeth, Ethan and Evangeline; son Matthew Schoonover; son Seth (Elizabeth) Schoonover and their children Aleah and Vivian; brothers Mike (Deborah) Nelson and Ronn (Peggy) Nelson; sister-in-law Sandra Brown; many nephews and nieces and many, many, many friends. She is preceded in death by her father Jim, brother Doug, and nephew Parker.
A memorial celebration will be held at South Whidbey Assembly of God on May 30 at 2 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Beth Schoonover scholarship fund for nursing students in the South Whidbey community. Please contact the SWAG office if interested.