Elizabeth "Betty" Mary (Tetreault) Underwood

February 9, 1922 ~ April 11, 2018 (age 96)

Elizabeth “Betty” Mary (Tetreault) (Whitbeck) Underwood of Greenfield, MA, 96, went home to be with the Lord and her loved ones on April 11, 2018.

Betty was born on February 9, 1922 at the “Block,” by Kendall Mills in Colrain, MA. She was the eldest of seven children of Philip A. Tetreault and Rosalba E. née Brunnelle. Throughout her childhood, Betty and her family lived in Griswoldville, Feeding Hills, Cambridge, and Greenfield. She attended Arms Academy. In 1940, Betty began her first job at Kendall Mills where her parents and grandparents had worked in the past.  While in Griswoldville, Betty met her husband, Robert E. Whitbeck, and they were married on February 16, 1942. Robert was killed on Attu Island, Alaska on May 29, 1943 during WWII. Robert is buried at Golden Gate National Cemetery in San Bruno, California.

Betty and Gordon “Chick” F. Underwood were married at Holy Trinity Rectory on October 5, 1946. 

After raising her family and obtaining her driver’s license at the age of 40, Betty began working at Erving Paper Mill. Later on, Betty worked for UMass, Amherst as a head cook in the cafeteria. While at UMass, Betty and three other ladies-- co-workers in the kitchen-- took annual weekend trips to NYC in the spring and fall. Betty left UMass in 1976 to care for her elderly mother. During the 1980s, she worked for Greenfield Public Schools and Poet’s Seat Nursing Home. For several years, Betty along with her granddaughters cared for her eldest daughter, Joan Marie (Whitbeck) Russell, who passed from cancer at the age of 45 in 1987. 

In 1990, Betty moved to Orlando, Florida to care for her daughter, Patricia M. Underwood, with whom she made her home for 20 years. Betty continued to work part-time for Orange County Public Schools in the cafeteria for a few years and finally retired in her early 70’s. After her beloved daughter’s death in 2008, Betty moved back north to be near her family. She made her home at Sunrise Terrace for 3 years where she enjoyed socializing with her neighbors and tending her flower garden. During the last few years, she resided at Buckley Healthcare Center. The family would like to thank the entire staff and her “special” caregivers for their love and attention to her needs.

Betty is remembered as a loving caregiver for her family ever since she was a young girl. She spoke French with her grandparents, Pierre and Celina Brunnelle, with whom she was very close. Betty enjoyed homemaking, baking, sewing, knitting, crocheting, embroidering, playing cards, traveling, flower gardening, and especially being with her family. 

Betty was known for being spontaneous with no fear shown: going downhill skiing without poles as a young girl, playing ball with her young brothers, flying in an open cockpit airplane in early 1940’s, and riding on the back of a motorcycle at the age of 80.

She was a woman of strong faith. Betty attended church at Calvary Baptist and Orlando Baptist while in Florida and Calvary Baptist in Turners Falls.

Betty leaves her daughter, Shirley A. Underwood of Greenfield; her son, Gary F. Underwood and his partner, Carol Houle of Turners Falls; her six grandchildren, Pamela C. LaPierre of Greenfield; Tracey A. Squires of Milton, WI; David M. Underwood of Woodman, WI; Adrienne S. Steele of Greenfield; Douglas K. Slaunwhite of Framingham, MA; Peter A. Underwood of Bogalusa, LA; nine great-grandchildren; four great-great grandsons; her brother, Raymond J. Tetreault of Tucson, AZ; her sister, Arlene L. Milowski of Turners Falls; and several nieces and nephews. 

She was preceded in death by her husband, Gordon on March 23, 2012.

A Celebration of Life service will be held on Friday, April 20, 2018 at 9:30 a.m. at Faith Baptist Church, 331 Silver St. Greenfield, MA. A private interment for the family will be at Calvary Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, Betty would want you to do something kind and loving for yourself or another-- whatever God would lay on your heart...

Arrangements are under the direction of the Kostanski Funeral Home.  Sympathy message available at



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