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Published July 10, 2013, 12:00 AM

Betty L. Knecht

Betty L. Knecht, age 63, of Rogers, ND, (Formerly Oakes, ND) passed away after a very long and courageous battle with breast cancer on Saturday, July 6, 2013, while at Sanford Health Palliative Care Unit.

Betty Lou Cowley was born on October 25, 1949 in Britton, SD, to George and Ruth Cowley. Betty grew up and attended the Engle Country School, until she attended Hecla High School where she graduated in 1967. Betty then moved to Aberdeen, SD where she worked for Northwestern Bell as a telephone operator until 1970. Shortly after high school Betty met the love of her life, Elmer J. Knecht Jr. (Butch). They were married on June 28, 1968. Butch and Betty started their life and family home on a farm near Guelph, ND. Betty helped work on the farm right alongside her husband Butch. They had three children, Corinna, Melissa and Curtis. In 1987, Betty took a job at Lincoln Oakes Nursery, and the family moved into Oakes, ND. Betty also worked many years for Schafer Seed, Alco, and PCI, all of Oakes. The summer of 2007 first brought exciting news the couple bought a lake home at Ashtabula. Then, in August 2007, Betty was diagnosed with stage 4 Breast Cancer, she underwent surgery at the University of Minnesota, in Minneaoplis, MN, where they told her family that she had only a few short months to live, and to "go home and enjoy her fall, because this Thanksgiving would be the last she would see."

Betty L. Knecht

Betty L. Knecht, age 63, of Rogers, ND, (Formerly Oakes, ND) passed away after a very long and courageous battle with breast cancer on Saturday, July 6, 2013, while at Sanford Health Palliative Care Unit.

Betty Lou Cowley was born on October 25, 1949 in Britton, SD, to George and Ruth Cowley. Betty grew up and attended the Engle Country School, until she attended Hecla High School where she graduated in 1967. Betty then moved to Aberdeen, SD where she worked for Northwestern Bell as a telephone operator until 1970. Shortly after high school Betty met the love of her life, Elmer J. Knecht Jr. (Butch). They were married on June 28, 1968. Butch and Betty started their life and family home on a farm near Guelph, ND. Betty helped work on the farm right alongside her husband Butch. They had three children, Corinna, Melissa and Curtis. In 1987, Betty took a job at Lincoln Oakes Nursery, and the family moved into Oakes, ND. Betty also worked many years for Schafer Seed, Alco, and PCI, all of Oakes. The summer of 2007 first brought exciting news the couple bought a lake home at Ashtabula. Then, in August 2007, Betty was diagnosed with stage 4 Breast Cancer, she underwent surgery at the University of Minnesota, in Minneaoplis, MN, where they told her family that she had only a few short months to live, and to "go home and enjoy her fall, because this Thanksgiving would be the last she would see."

Betty was a hard worker and she had a great attitude that showed in her six years of cancer treatment and weekly chemotherapy at the Roger Maris Cancer Center in Fargo. Betty will be remembered for her sense of humor and strong work ethic. More importantly Betty was an amazing wife, mother and friend. Betty was the world's best grandmother to her grandkids, they meant everything to her, even in her last years when she was very ill, she could be found at every one of their activities. One of her biggest goals was to see her grandsons graduate this spring, she did just that and was admitted to the hospital this Memorial Day, the day after their graduations. One of Betty's most proud accomplishments are her five grandchildren, Jacob, Zachary, Ashtyn, James and Brynley. Betty will be missed by many, but most of all Betty will be remembered.

Betty is survived by her husband of 45 years, Butch; daughter, Corinna (Dan) Buttke of Fingal, ND; daughter, Melissa (Jon) Crawford of West Fargo, ND; son, Curtis Knecht of New York City, NY; and one brother, Marvin Cowley of Hecla, SD. Betty was preceded in death by her parents, George and Ruth Cowley; and one sister, Carol Kleppech.

A prayer service will be held on Friday, July 12, 2013, starting at 7:00 p.m. at Dahlstrom Funeral Home in Oakes, ND. A memorial service will be held on Saturday, July 13, 2013, starting at 10:00 a.m. at St. John's Lutheran Church in Hecla, SD. Pallbearers will be her grandchildren: Jake, Zac, Ashtyn, James, Brynley, and her special friend Pat McCann. Honorary Pallbearers will be all those who touched her life and loved as she did.

The family of Betty would like to thank the staff of Roger Maris Cancer Center, Dr. Snow, and 7th floor/PCU staff.

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