Farewell, dear Betty

13 April 2009: It was with deep regret that the secretariat of Badminton World Federation learnt of the passing of Betty Scheele in England. She was 95 years of age. In recent years, she has been under medical care and confined to the nursing home.
Bety will be fondly remembered as one half of the inseparable Herbert-Betty Scheele team that graced the top echelon of administration of international badminton through the thirties until the 1980s.
Betty was the wife of Herbert Scheele, one of the icons of the sport and a highly respected figure on and off the court. Herbert was secretary to the then International Badminton Federation for some 39 years from 1937 and was considered an authority on the rules of the sport. And Betty was famously referred to as the ‘unpaid secretary’ to the Honorary Secretary of the IBF.
She was always by his side, assisting him with his administrative duties and softly prompting words of support.
On the occasion of the death of Herbert in March 1981, the then president of the IBF Stellan Mohlin, wrote to Betty, “Today my thoughts are going to you, who so wholeheartedly always stood at Herbert’s side, helped him, fed him, enjoyed life with him and when I speak of Mrs Badminton, it is in the truest sense. We have all a great deal of respect for what you are and always have been. It would be correct to say that without you Betty, Herbert would never have been able to do all that he achieved for the sport. “
That probably sums up the person of Betty Scheele… who was inexhaustible in her support for the sport and the people who run and play it.
After Herbert had passed away, Betty continued to travel the world to attend international events. She remained a familiar, cheerful and welcome face at the All England and the larger continental championships.
In 2002 she was taken ill suffering from pneumonia and from thence her physical condition deteriorated and she was confined to a nursing home.
Betty Scheele’s funeral services have been arranged for 14 April at 11.45am at Randalls Park Crematorium, Leatherhead, Cobham Road.


About badmintonmania

Sometimes I wonder if I'm the Indian in Thoreau's Walden who makes cane baskets and is surprised nobody wants them. A. was talking about discipline when she said: "But Dev, if you want to move ahead in life, you'll have to be like that," and she may as well have defined everything else for me. I've played the low percentage game for too long to believe there's anything in it but the romance; the odds keep getting jacked up higher and higher; and you may be a good Idealist but a worse Fool.
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