Bessie J. “Bess” Pierce, 92, of Moline, Illinois, died Wednesday, May 24, 2023, at UnityPoint Health – Trinity Rock Island.
Services are 11:00 a.m. Saturday, May 27, in the Horizon Room at Trimble Funeral Home at Trimble Pointe, 701 12th Street, Moline, with Rev. Santina Poor officiating. Visitation is one hour prior to services. Burial is in Greenview Memorial Gardens, East Moline. Memorials may be made to the family, for a fund to be established in Bessie’s memory.
The former Bessie Jane Rasmussen was born May 24, 1931, in Youngstown, Ohio, to William Lester and Bessie (Brockley) Rasmussen. She graduated from Moline High School as valedictorian in 1949 and went on to marry Richard Alan Pierce on April 17, 1949, in Moline. He died March 15, 2015.
Bess had a passion for writing. She was a published author including books about Moline and local dignitaries and participated in yearly writers conferences. She and her husband were Feature Editors and photographers for Midwest Outdoors Magazine since 1977, and she remained a regular contributor until her passing.
She was active in the Writer’s Studio and the Outdoor Writers Association of America. She was also an avid doll collector, making many friends over the years at various conventions and doll shows.
Bess is survived by three children, Mike (Christine) Pierce of Wausau, Wisconsin, Matt (Kari) Pierce of Florissant, Missouri, and Mary (Melvin) Stevens of Champaign, Illinois; six grandchildren, Richard (Laura) Pierce of Alexander, Arkansas, Sarah (Mark) Villanueva of Appleton, Wisconsin, Alex Pierce of Florissant, Kaitlin (Brad) Bertram of New Mexico, and Melvin Stevens III and Joseph Stevens, both of Champaign; and three great-grandchildren, Sophia Villanueva, and William and Nora Bertram. She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, and a daughter-in-law, Joan Pierce.
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