Active church leader, skier and cyclist
Tracy Beasom, a resident of Claremont since 1955, died peacefully at home on November 28, 2013 with her husband by her side. She was 89.
Though called Tracy for all of her adult life, she was given the name Virginia Esther Blackburn at birth. She was born January 16, 1924 in Craig, Missouri, the daughter of Josephine and Charles Elmer Blackburn, and had seven brothers and sisters.
When she was a very young child, the family moved to Topeka, Kansas, where she lived until she graduated from Topeka High School. She attended Midland College in Fremont, Nebraska, where she earned her teaching degree in 1946. At college she met James (Jim) Prince Beasom III and on Christmas Day in 1946, the only time family members could gather together after the war, they were married in her hometown of Topeka, Kansas.
Mrs. Beasom started her teaching career in Omaha, Nebraska, while Mr. Beasom finished medical school. They then moved to Los Angeles, California in 1948. She taught elementary school in Glendale until Mr. Beasom completed his residency, after which they moved to Claremont, their permanent home.
Though she adored teaching, Mrs. Beasom gave it up upon becoming a mother. She devoted all of her loving attention to her three boisterous boys, Mark, Bruce and Paul. She was always involved in her sons’ many activities and supported her boys in their varied interests and endeavors. Later, she continued to shower love and attention on her two granddaughters.
Once every three years, she enjoyed traveling back to her roots in Missouri for her family reunion with her seven siblings and their children. It was a weeklong, fun-filled camping adventure at the family lakeside cabin that continues to this day.
Mrs. Beasom was always up for adventure. She enjoyed sailing to Catalina with her family when the boys were young, and skiing with them in the mountains of California and Utah until age 78. At age 60, she became an avid cyclist and took numerous bike tours with Mr. Beasom through Europe and the United States. She was a charter member of Claremont Senior Bike Group and enjoyed biking until age 84.
Ever ready to help, she was an active, longtime volunteer of the Pomona Valley Hospital Auxiliary. With endless energy and organizational skills, she was known as a planner of the many events at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church. She was a pillar in the church community for over 50 years, where she sang in the choir, taught Sunday school, headed countless programs and served as president of the Church Council.
Mrs. Beasom was a woman with varied interests, which included gardening, raising exotic finches, cooking, hosting luaus and crafting beautiful table decorations. She collected bells from around the world and was a member of American Bell Association International.
She is preceded in death by her son Bruce and six of her siblings. She is survived by her devoted husband Jim; by her two sons and daughters-in-law, Mark and Samela Beasom of La Cañada, California and Paul and Susan Beasom of Park City, Utah; by two granddaughters, Andrea Beasom and Deanna Reeves, and by one brother, Ben Blackburn. Mrs. Beasom will be greatly missed by her extensive family of numerous nieces and nephews and her many friends.
A memorial service will be held on Friday, December 6 at 3 p.m. at Good Shepherd Lutheran, located at 1700 N. Towne Ave. in Claremont.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Good Shepherd Lutheran Church or Pomona Valley Community Hospital.