Bernice Talbott Beard died on Saturday, Jan. 18, 2020, at Hospice of St. Francis in Titusville, Florida, at 92 years of age of natural causes.
She was the wife of the late Paul William Beard and daughter of the late Edwin Warfield Talbott and the late Henrietta Snader Talbott Nusbaum. Her late stepfather was Ira Albert Nusbaum.
Surviving are a son Jeffrey Paul Beard, daughter-in-law Nancy Jean Beard (formerly Donelson), and two sisters, Mrs. Alice Galbraith of Waynesboro, Pa., and Mrs. Jane Taylor of Biglerville; and brothers-in-law, Charles Galbraith of Waynesboro and the Rev. Albert Guyer of Martinsburg, Pa.
She was predeceased by her sister Mrs. Jean Taylor; her sisters-in-law, Hazel Beard Guyer, Elsie Beard Lowry and Mildred Pearl Beard; as well as brothers-in-law, Harold Engler Beard, Robert Lowry, Ralph Taylor and Charles Swope.
A long-time resident of Carroll County, she graduated as the first valedictorian from New Windsor High School in 1944. She worked for the Baltimore Gas and Electric Company from 1944 to 1951. She received a bachelor of arts degree cum laude from Western Maryland College in 1974 and the master of liberal arts degree in 1981.
In 1989, she retired from Western Maryland College, now McDaniel College, as staff emeritus, after 27 years of service. She was assistant director of admissions for 17 years and executive assistant to the president for 10 years. She was also secretary of the board of trustees and secretary of the college.
Following retirement, she studied oil painting, traveled extensively with her husband by motor home, wrote four books and numerous articles for magazines and newspapers on recreational vehicle travel and established Arbor House Publishing, which she closed in 2010. She was writing to the end.
Earlier she did freelance feature writing for the Carroll County Times.
She was an active member of the Westminster Church of the Brethren, where she served on committees, was a deacon and worship lay leader. Formerly, she taught Sunday school and served as chairperson of the church board. She served as chaplain for the Camping Group of the Westminster Church of the Brethren. In addition, she was a former member of the American Association of University Women and a charter member of The National Museum for Women in the Arts.
In 2015, she moved to The Great Outdoors (TGO) in Titusville, Florida, to be near her son and daughter-in-law. She was an associate member of The Great Outdoors Community Church and a founding member of Just Write, a writers club at TGO. She was always ready to contribute her knowledge and help other writers advance their craft.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Westminster Church of the Brethren, Bond Street and Park Place, or to McDaniel College, c/o Institutional Advancement, Westminster, Md.
There will be a viewing at North Brevard Funeral Home, 1450 Norwood Ave., Titusville, FL 32796 on Thursday Jan. 23, from 4 to 6 p.m. A funeral service will follow at 6 p.m.
On Saturday, Jan. 25, there will be a viewing at Pritts Funeral Home, Washington Road, Westminster, Md., from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. The funeral service will be at Westminster Church of the Brethren, at Bond Street and Park Place, Westminster, Md., starting at 2 p.m. The interment will follow at the Meadow Branch Cemetery. After the interment, a meal will be served at the church.