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Bethel’s Grandparents Day Honors Special Family Bond

Marjorie Getsch’s great-granddaughter Bethany Haag (left) is the first family member to attend Bethel.

Bethel’s third annual Grandparents Day, held on campus on April 17, was a special time for about 350 grandparents  to connect with their grandchildren in their college life. Grandparents had the opportunity to experience some of their grandchild’s typical day at Bethel by attending Chapel, enjoying lunch together, hearing how God is working at Bethel, taking tours of the campus, and attending a “Class without a Quiz,” where they learned about how studying the Cold War can help Christians better understand the biblical values of justice, peace, and hope.

For one family, the day was especially unique because it brought together three generations: Marjorie Getsch, her granddaughter Debbie (Getsch) Haag, and her great-granddaughter freshman Bethany Haag. Marjorie and her late husband Bill began supporting Bethel in 1978 through several planned gifts. Getsch Residence Hall, which was dedicated in 1985, was named in honor of the couple’s generosity. However, Bethany, who is Marjorie’s second oldest great-granddaughter, calls another freshman dorm home.

Marjorie and Bill’s family includes four sons, 14 grandchildren and their eight spouses, and 18 great-grandchildren. Bethany is actually the first in the family to attend Bethel, but she won’t be the last, as another Getsch great-granddaughter plans to attend Bethel in the fall.

Marjorie, who turned 99 on April 18, and Bethany share a love of Bethel. Marjorie says she and Bill decided to support the school a 37 years ago because they loved its values. She continues to be “so pleased with Bethel.” Bethany is, too. During her visits to campus, it was the Bethel community and student-led Vespers – Bethel’s Sunday night worship services – that helped her make the decision to attend Bethel. Marjorie says proudly that Bethany, who has declared a business major with emphases in human resource management and marketing, “is doing great” her first year.

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