In memory of

   Agatha Letts


Agatha Louella (Bethel) Letts was born in Boston, Massachusetts on April 18, 1921, the second of eight children of Ulysses Grant and Grace Bethel. Agatha passed away on April 10, 2009 at St. Mary's Hospital Hauenstein Center in Grand Rapids after a short illness. She was preceded in death by her parents, two sisters, one brother, and her husband of 60 years, The Honorable Judge John T. Letts Sr. Agatha was raised in Lake Luzerne, New York where her father moved the family and opened and operated a restaurant, service station, and later his own landscaping business. Agatha attended school there ultimately graduating from Luzerne High School. While in high school, she worked in the high school principal's office, served on student council, was class secretary, played on the basketball team, and graduated as salutatorian of her class. Upon her graduation from high school in 1939, she moved to Boston, Massachusetts where she initially worked as a demonstrator of electrical appliances and as a homemaker for the Boston Edison Company while attending Boston University's extension program. In addition, during World War II, she took the Red Cross nurse's aide training and worked at Boston's City Hospital. In 1941, she met John Letts, a second lieutenant in the United States Army, who she later married in January 1942. She remained in Boston when John was sent to Italy during the war as a part of the 366th Infantry. She and John had two sons and lived in Boston after the war while John attended law school. Agatha became a member of Jack and Jill of America Inc. while residing in Boston. Agatha, John and family moved to Lansing, Michigan in 1950 where John had grown up. Agatha was active in the PTA at her son's elementary schools in Lansing and Detroit, and Grand Rapids, MI where they moved to in 1954. Agatha was also active in the PTA at Central High School in Grand Rapids, MI. She was a member of Trinity United Methodist Church and taught Sunday school at the church. Her family was recognized as the "Family of the Year" at the church in 1958. Agatha was a member of the Grand Rapids, MI Women's City Club and served as an officer in the club. She was a long time member of the Grand Rapids Bar Auxillary serving as its President for a term. She was a member of the Michigan Bar Auxillary as well. Agatha served on Boards of the March of Dimes, the Red Cross, Community Mental Health, Visiting Nurse's, and the Welcome Home for the Blind. She was a member of the Urban League and the NAACP. She is survived by her two sons, John Thomas (Gwendolyn) Letts Jr. of Grand Rapids, MI, and Judge Richard Dennis (Gloria) Letts of Columbus, Ohio; three grandchildren, Dr. Tiffany A. (Adam) Letts Young of Randallstown, Maryland; Dr. Maureen N. (Eric) Letts Joyner of Atlanta, Georgia; and Attorney Justin Craig Letts of Detroit, Michigan; two great grandsons, Asa Young and Darrin Joyner; her sisters, Jeanne Mayo of Lake Luzerne, New York and Sylvia Henry of Baltimore, Maryland; two brothers, Grant (Marcia) Bethel of Los Angeles, California and Robert Bethel of Oakland, California; sisters-in-law, Naoma Letts Reed and Dr. Olivia Letts of Lansing, Michigan; nephews, nieces, and extended family and friends. Friends may meet with the family for viewing from 12:00 Noon until 2:00 p.m. on Friday, April 17, 2009 at Ivy K. Gillespie Moody Memorial Chapel, funeral services beginning at 2:00 p.m. The family asks that memorial contributions be made at either the Trinity United Methodist Church Community Ministries Program, Lacks Cancer Center, or the Saint Mary's Hauenstein Center.

Lot Location – Veterans 524-C-2

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