In loving memory of

Elizabeth Vanderploeg
October 28, 1945 - February 24, 2019

Elizabeth Vanderploeg, age 73 of Monroe, passed away on Sunday, February 24, 2019 at her home. Memorial services will be held on Saturday, March 2, 2019 at 1:00 p.m. at St. Stephen's Episcopal Church in Newton. The family will greet friends from 6:00 - 8:00 p.m. at Coburn Funeral Home in Monroe on Friday, March 1, 2019. Memorials may be directed to the Monroe Fire Department or Alzheimer's Association. Condolences may be left for the family at

Elizabeth Russell Greenslade Vanderploeg was born on October 28, 1945 to Thomas Bordman Greenslade and Mary Esther MacWilliam Greenslade in New York City. Beth grew up on Staten Island, New York and graduated from Curtis High School in 1963. Beth attended Cornell University in Ithaca, New York and graduated in 1967 with a Home Economics degree. While at Cornell, Beth met the love of her life, Ruard Arthur Vanderploeg, Jr. They married on April 20, 1968 in Gambier, Ohio. Two months later, they joined the Peace Corp and served for two years in India. They taught for two years at Scattergood Friends School in West Branch, Iowa, where they welcomed their first child, Jennifer.

In 1973, Ruard and Beth began farming the Vanderploeg family farm near Reasoner, Iowa. They had two more daughters, Sarah and Katherine. Beth took great joy in cooking, making candy, gardening and raising flowers. She started Everlasting Flowers to sell dried flowers and was one of the early vendors at the Des Moines Farmers Market, selling flowers and pies. Beth was a Camp Fire leader and never missed any of her children's activities. She sang in the choir at St. Stephens Episcopal Church in Newton and worked for many years in the floral department of the Newton HyVee. Her family remembers her devotion to her family, her irreverent sense of humor and her eternal optimism.

Beth is survived by her husband of nearly 51 years, Ruard; her daughters Jennifer (Lance) Hewitt of O'Fallon, Illinois; Sarah Vanderploeg of Des Moines; Kate McElderry of Lenexa, Kansas; her grandchildren Adrienne and Alexander Hewitt, Olivia Vanderploeg, Ethan and Eva McElderry; her brother Dr. Thomas (Sonia) Greenslade of Gambier, Ohio; her nephews Thomas Greenslade of Naughtingham, Ohio and Russell (Regina) Greenslade of Colombus, Ohio.


Gary D Yoder wrote on Mar 1, 2019:

"What a wonderful person Beth was! She is in a much better place now! I am so sorry for your loss! Gary D Yoder"

The Burghorns wrote on Feb 28, 2019:

"What a lovely legacy she has left to friends and family. She invested her beauty, creativity, time, talent, and values not only to her family, but to her community. May you feel God's comforting presence in your loss, and bring to mind tender memories. The Burghorns "

Bill, Jodi, Kenzie and Kolten Johnson wrote on Feb 26, 2019:

"Our thoughts and prayers to all of you during this time. May God wraps his arms around you tightly. Deepest condolences. "

Tracey Wright Stark wrote on Feb 25, 2019:

"I hold so many dear memories of growing up with Beth...far too many to mention. She was a true gem. I am comforted to know she is now Home. I love you, Sarah, and my prayers and heart go out to you all."

Nancy Wright wrote on Feb 25, 2019:

"I am so sorry to hear of Beth?s passing. It is comforting to know that she is at peace. I have many memories of sharing activities of our daughters throughout their school years. We also worked together with Campfire girls. Beth was a lovely and talented lady. Happily, Sarah and Tracey are still good friends to this day. My sympathy Ruard and to the whole family. "

Dee Kinkaid wrote on Feb 25, 2019:

"Our deepest sympathy in the loss of such a fine lady. Denny and I met her when she brought the girls to the book mobile in Reasnor. Think we competed with the number of books we checked out!!!"

Bryan and Brenda Lamb wrote on Feb 25, 2019:

"So sorry to hear of Beth's passing. What a fun gal. Always enjoyed any time spent with her. Prayers for peace and comfort during this difficult time. "