Charlotte centenarian named ‘best’ mother in Greater Lansing


Winifred Jean Bearup, 100, of Charlotte, was named the winner City Pulse’s first “Best of the Best” Mother’s Day award following a heartfelt nomination from her 68-year-old son, Richard Bearup. The big prize: $175 in gift certificates to Sweet Custom Jewelry and Bliss Salon Spa Boutique. 

Winifred Bearup was an army combat nurse in World War II, serving the wounded from French, Belgian and German battlefields. It was there she met and married her husband of 60 years, an Army artillery company commander, in the south of France. Together, they had three children. 

Her son described Bearup as “one of the original working moms.” She served for several years as a nurse at Hayes Green Beach Hospital in Charlotte, later being promoted to director of nursing. Today, Bearup is retired and still resides in Charlotte.

“Among her hallmark qualities are her ever-present positive attitude, sunny disposition, service to others and an abiding belief in the goodness of people,” Richard Bearup told City Pulse. 

Our runner-ups in this year’s contest are Jasenka Piljac Zegerac and DeLisa Fountain, who was recently appointed as the director of the Department of Neighborhoods and Citizen Engagement for the city of Lansing. Fountain’s 15-year-old son, Sean Carter, said she “will always do whatever she can to make sure we can have a stable life.” Zegerac also “does all the housework and reminds me to do my homework,” according to her daughter Antonia. 

Stay tuned for another iteration of this City Pulse contest for Father’s Day in June.


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