Muriel (Beezhold) Kotecki was a great mother who loved her grandchildren, said her son Mike, of Lansing.
His parents met when they worked at the Fire Association in Chicago.
"He was an insurance agent and she was a secretary,” Kotecki said.
The couple moved from Roseland to Lansing in 1954 where they built a home on Jackson Street. They later built another home on the west side of town in 1964.
After her husband died in 1975, she went to work in customer service at Marshall Field’s in Calumet City. She later sold her husband’s insurance business to an employee of the agency and it still exists in Lansing with the Kotecki name.
Kotecki said his mother was involved in her church, New Hope Church in Lansing -- formerly First Christian Reformed Church of Lansing.
“She was with the Elim Key Ladies. Elim Christian is a school for handicapped kids and she helped out with fundraising and anytime they needed help with dinners or things like that she was always involved in that.”
As frequent travelers, Kotecki said his parents would often take trips to Las Vegas and to California to visit her brother. His mother met some of her most admired celebrities on their trips, including Bing Crosby, Bob Hope, Tony Bennett and Lawrence Welk.
“She once sat on Andy Williams’ foot,” said her son, recalling the story. “It was in the mid-1960s and they were staying at Caesar’s Palace. She saw him sitting on a lounge chair reading and said, ‘Are you Andy Williams?’” When he confirmed and invited her to sit down, she sat on his foot.
She was also an avid gardener who always loved being outside with her flower gardens, said her son.
“For a while she did a bit of stained glass work and we have a few of those pieces,” he said. She was also a big Chicago Bears fans and enjoyed watching games with neighbors.