Wanda Faye Beard suffered a massive stroke and died peacefully several days later on Thursday, February 20, 2020, while surrounded by her beloved husband, Doug, and her children. Although she was truly a survivor who had beaten cancer twice and overcome repeated medical issues, she had also become increasingly frail in the past 2 years due to chronic health issues.
She was born on August 16, 1943 to J.B. and Linnie Mae Scott in Birmingham, Alabama. She was an only child, but never truly alone as she was raised within the context of a much larger, very loving Southern family, as well as their extensive church community. This developed a deep-seated importance of family for Wanda, both given and chosen, which became a cornerstone of her life along with her Christian faith. It was often said that she never knew a stranger, and she kept her beloved friends very close to her heart. Once she counted you as a friend, she embraced you and your entire family for life, often adopting her friends’ children and grandchildren as her own.
Wanda graduated from Garden City High School in 1961 and made the Dean’s List while completing a business degree at Cleary College in 1983. She married Gordon Macomber in 1964, and together they adopted their children, Scott and Heather. After they divorced in 2001, Wanda met the great love of her life, Douglas Beard, in 2004 and they married in 2005. They were truly best friends and each other’s greatest champions. Their marriage expanded her family to include his children, Bill, Marge, and D.W.
Wanda was employed at Gelman Sciences/Pall Life for nearly 30 years in administrative work, manufacturing, and accounting. She was an outstanding employee who earned multiple awards, including a sailing cruise with company executives, for improving efficiency and productivity through the company suggestion program. She also had a natural sales ability that led her to great success with Sarah Coventry jewelry and Avon. However, she often said that being a mom was her greatest source of pride and joy in life.
Her spirit was indomitable and her joy for life was infectious to all who knew her. She truly believed that she could chose joy, happiness, and positivity every day, no matter what came her way. She lifted herself up with her positive talk, even in the face of injury, illness, or truly adverse events. She would often say that she could withstand anything, so long as her kids were healthy and happy. We could always count her kind words, warm embrace, and sense of humor to brighten our day, and the world feels less vibrant without her in it.
A memorial service will be held on Friday, February 28th from 11:00 A.M. to 12:00 Noon at the First United Methodist Church in Saline, with a light lunch immediately after. Visitation for friends and family will be held before the service from 9:30 A.M. until the time of service at 11:00 A.M. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in her name may be made to the First United Methodist Church of Saline and envelopes will be available at the service. To leave a memory you have of Wanda, to sign her guestbook, or for directions please visit www.rbfhsaline.com