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Bette Jess

Feb. 25, 1931-Feb. 17, 2013

Bette Marie Swanson was born to Charlotte (Footer) Swanson on February 25, 1931 in Fargo. She was raised in Fargo and graduated from Central High School in 1949.

Bette worked as a telephone operator at The Forum for a time. She was married to John Marks Jess, Jr., on December 20, 1952 in Fargo, and they lived in Cooperstown, N.D., and Goodridge, Minn., where John taught school. They returned to Fargo briefly before making their home in Moorhead in 1962.

John died June 9, 2011, and Bette continued to reside in Moorhead. She died Sunday, February 17, 2013 at Essentia Health, Fargo, at 81 years of age.

Bette was active in Our Redeemer Lutheran Church, Moorhead. She also loved animals of all kinds. She supported the Humane Society and was active in the FM Kennel Club, participating in many dog shows.

Surviving Bette are her daughter, Jana M. Jess of Fargo; grandson, SSG Paul John Jess Murray and his wife, Heather, of Lacey, Wash.; and several nieces and nephews.

Preceding her in death were her parents; husband; son, John Jess III; and a sister, Beverly ("Cissy").

Visitation is from 4 to 6 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 20, with a 6 p.m. prayer service, at Korsmo Funeral Chapel in Moorhead.

The funeral will be at 12 noon on Saturday, Feb. 23, in Our Redeemer Lutheran Church, Moorhead. An online guestbook is at