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Bessie O. Grod (née Bowen) was set free from a long battle with Alzheimer’s on June 27, 2016.   Born October 19, 1920 in Novelty, MO, she was the eldest of three daughters born to Edward and Lola Bowen. Bessie graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Education from Northeast Missouri State Teacher’s College in 1943. She went on to impact hundreds of lives through teaching elementary school, where she helped students to find confidence in themselves through learning. Bessie taught first, second and fifth grades in several schools, including Country Day in St. Louis, Wright City and finally at Shelby County Schools, where she retired in 1992.

While she enjoyed gardening, Bessie’s true love was art. Holding a Masters degree in Art, she loved creating across many mediums. An accomplished painter, her favorite medium was watercolor and her favorite subject was landscapes. She leaves behind a voluminous library that is enjoyed by her family and many in the Kansas City area.

Love for and memories of Bessie will be carried forth by her son with late husband Leonard, Bruce Grod (wife Gail) of Liberty, Missouri; her granddaughter, Stefany Williams (husband Keith) of Platte City, Missouri; and her sister, Gene Merritt of Kirksville, MO.

Her remains will be scattered amongst the landscapes she so loved to depict in her artwork.

The family requests donations in Bessie’s memory to be made to the Alzheimer’s Association ( in lieu of flowers or other remembrances. Memories of Bessie may be shared at Arrangements: Church-Archer-Pasley Funeral Home, Liberty, MO 816-781-2000.