Beth E Mares, 68 years of age of rural DeWitt passed away at her daughter, Desirae and son-in-law Brian’s home after a courageous battle with a type of brain cancer called Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM), two years and two days from diagnosis. One month before retiring, after working two to three jobs most of her life, to provide for her family, she was given this awful diagnosis that stole her mind and her independence. She has now gone to, as she called it her “basement apartment”. One of her favorite Bible passages was Corinthians 16:13 which she said summed up her journey with brain cancer: Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong!
Beth was born on September 7, to Willard and Charlotte (Bitting) Malstead in Beatrice. She graduated from Beatrice High School in 1972. On December 11, 1976, she married Delmar Mares. Of this union, two children were born, Desirae and James. From a previous union, Beth had a son, Christopher. After raising her three children, Beth returned to school and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Management from Peru State College when she was 53 years old. Beth held various jobs, but her favorite job was working at the Resolution Center as a Mediator. Beth enjoyed gardening and was a Master Gardener. She also enjoyed doing art projects, especially with the “B.A.G. Ladies” with the Beatrice Art Guild.
She is survived by her husband of 45 years, Delmar Mares of rural DeWitt; her 3 children, Chris Pilkinton of Beatrice, Desirae Mares (Brian Krause) of Hickman and James Mares (Shannon) of Krum, Texas; 4 grandchildren, Dalyn and Wyatt Pilkinton of Kearney, Berkleigh and Reagan Mares of Krum, Texas; and her dog, Tucker of rural DeWitt. Beth is preceded in death by her parents, Willard and Charlotte Malstead; her sister, Sharon Malchow; and several aunts and uncles.
The family would like to thank Dr. Nathan Green, Jill RN, Melissa APRN, Korinne APRN, Jessica APRN, Erica CMA, Dr. Mark Stavas and Kendra RN from Cancer Partners of Nebraska for their wonderful and compassionate care. Carrie RN, Bryan Health Oncology Nurse Navigator for her follow up phone calls since her diagnosis. Brittany RN, Angela RN, Angie RN, Molly RN, Kelli RN, Heidi RN, Klara LPN, George Spiritual Care, Kelli SW, Tanya Hospice Aide, Gina Hospice Aide, Jess Hospice Aide, and Paige Hospice Aide from HoriSun Hospice for helping us keep her at home. All of you have truly found your calling!
Upon reflection of her diagnosis, she found this passage by Aarti Khurana that summed up how she felt: My silence means I am tired of fighting and now there is nothing left to fight for. My silence means I am tired of explaining my feelings to you but now I don’t have the energy to explain them anymore. My silence means I have adapted to the changes in my life, and I don’t want to complain. My silence means I am on a self-healing process, and I am trying to forget everything I ever wanted from you. My silence means I am just trying to move on gracefully with all my dignity.
GBM is a rare, always stage 4 and deadly brain cancer, with an average of 12,000 patients a year being diagnosed. GBM is a cancer that forms as a tumor with “tentacles” that extend into other parts of the brain, making total removal impossible. As it regrows, it spreads cancer cells throughout the brain like “sprinkling glitter.” There is no cure and only 27% of people with this diagnosis will survive to 2 years. Since 1902, only four drugs and one device have been approved to treat this aggressive cancer that steals your mind! Cancer can be a lonely diagnosis. A friendly phone call or visit can make all the difference to a person afflicted with cancer.
Graveside Services will be held at 11:00 AM Saturday, October 22, 2022 at Swan Valley Cemetery south of Swanton. Visitation will be held from 1 to 8 PM Friday, October 21, 2022 at Harman-Wright Mortuary in Beatrice. Memorials are suggested to the Swanton Volunteer Fire Department in care of the mortuary. Harman-Wright Mortuary & Crematory in Beatrice in charge of arrangements.