Cover photo for Norma Jean Beans's Obituary
Norma Jean Beans Profile Photo
1932 Norma 2022

Norma Jean Beans

August 31, 1932 — January 9, 2022

Norma Jean Beans, former Cozad resident, passed away Sunday, January 9, 2022 at Sunrise Retirement Community in Sioux City, Iowa at the age of 89. Norma was born August 31, 1932 to Lloyd and Ruth (Peterson) Griffis in Cozad, Nebraska. When Norma was almost 9, her family moved to Southern California (August 1941), where she finished school and took classes at a Jr. College.  She helped her father in his business of making trailer homes and furniture. LeRoy came to visit California and stayed with her family (her older brothers knew his older brothers). They met and fell in love. Norma came to Cozad and stayed with her aunt and uncle, Ila and Milo Griffis.  She married LeRoy on February 22, 1953 at the Cozad First Methodist Church.

Norma loved being a mom to Glen and Carol. She was a leader for Glen’s Cub Scouts and Carol’s 4-H Club. Later, she became a Girl Scout leader for the young girls at the “Cozad State School for Trainable Retarded”. She was involved in many activities at her church, including teaching Sunday School, decorating the front of the sanctuary with flowers, working at the Thrift Shop, making lap robes and more.

Norma worked alongside of LeRoy designing homes and doing the bookwork for their business, Beans Builders.

Norma enjoyed working with her hands.  She enjoyed cooking healthy meals, knitting, quilting, and pressing flowers to make cards and pictures.

LeRoy built a greenhouse for her connected to their home.  She loved sharing the art of growing plants with both youth and adults.  Every year local elementary students would come and learn about plants at her home greenhouse.  She was an avid gardener, becoming a University of Nebraska Master Gardener.  She hosted garden walks and taught others, including judging the 4-H horticulture exhibits at the Dawson County Fair.  She was featured on Nebraska’s Backyard Farmer a couple of times. She grew many varieties of ornamental grasses and she trialed Penstemon (Beardtongue) varieties for Dale Lindgren, Extension Specialist University of Nebraska.

Norma and LeRoy built the ‘Beans Duplexes’ and a new house starting in 1977. They loved having a ‘family’ of renters and neighbors, celebrating often with homemade ice cream and other treats.  They enjoyed watching the neighbor LaBrayere children grow up.

Norma was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2008. When she could no longer live at home, she moved to Stone Hearth Estates in Gothenburg. Then to Bickford Cottage & Sunrise Retirement Community, both near Carol in Sioux City.  She loved visits, especially from Alexis and Kevlyn, great granddaughters. Norma enjoyed life!

Survivors include Norma’s children, Glen Beans, Lincoln, NE and Carol (Brad) Larvick, South Sioux City, NE. Four step grandchildren, spouses and 7 great-grandchildren. 

Sister-In-Law, Kelva Devine and many nieces, nephews and their families.

Norma was preceded in death by her parents, Lloyd and Ruth; her husband, LeRoy; brothers, Don, Milton, Buck and Bruce; and sister, Janet.

Norma loved flowers, to honor Norma, please plant some flowers next spring and think of her while they are blooming! Norma also loved the color blue. If you have a blue shirt, please wear it to come and celebrate her life. Memorials are suggested to the family in her name for later designation. Services will be held Friday, January 14, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. at Cozad United Methodist Church with Pastor Doug Gahn officiating. Burial will follow at Cottonwood Cemetery northeast of Cozad. Visitation with family present will be Thursday from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Berryman Funeral Home.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Norma Jean Beans, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Thursday, January 13, 2022

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Central time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Funeral Service

Friday, January 14, 2022

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)

Cozad United Methodist Church

1515 B Street, Cozad, NE 69130

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


Visits: 21

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the
Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Service map data © OpenStreetMap contributors

Send Flowers

Send Flowers

Plant A Tree

Plant A Tree