In Memoriam

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Sibyl Halling Belliss ’50

Sibyl was born in China in 1928, and lived there happily until the Japanese invaded in 1941. She was held under house arrest with her mother and two sisters until the following year when they were repatriated with their father. Both parents, Frank Halling ’23 and Sibyl Lindell ’22, had graduated from Reed, and Sib followed their lead, studying political science and playing on basketball and softball teams. She wrote her thesis on the program and policies of the Chinese Communists. At Reed she met and married Don Belliss ’51, her husband of 65 years.

Upon graduating, the couple moved to Martinez, California, where Don accepted a job with Shell Oil Company. Four years later, he was transferred to the head office in New York City, and the family, which now included three sons, Frank, Steve, and Greg, moved to a home on the Connecticut shore of Long Island Sound. They built a boat, which the family sailed and raced extensively. Sib loved the ocean and enjoyed sailing, especially cruising in the Virgin Islands. Their next assignment took them to Alton, Illinois, where they lived for 24 years. Sib was active in the Christian Science church and served on the Madison County Board of Supervisors. She also worked diligently, but unsuccessfully, to promote the Equal Rights Amendment.

After Don’s retirement, the couple moved to Nevada City, California, where they built a house over looking Scotts Flat Lake and the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Sib continued with her church work and gardening. They traveled extensively, ranging from China to Russia, and Alaska to Antarctica. Eventually, dementia took over, and it became necessary to move from their seven wooded acres to Atria Senior Living.

Sib will be remembered for her beaming smile, red cap (Hot Shot), and outstretched handshake. She enjoyed a full and happy life, and was much loved by all who knew her.

Appeared in Reed magazine: September 2016

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