Remembering Betty Ann (Rusti) Allison
Posted: Feb 16, 2009
I would like to inform you that a Girl Scout Alumni Betty Ann (Rusti) Allison (Betty Ann Allison Squires) died on June 14, 2008. She was 86. She was active in Connecticut Scouting from 1931 to 1945.
She wrote in her memoir:
Girl Scouts was my love and in those days you had to be 10 to become a Girl Scout. There were no Brownies. A very multitalented woman, Mindell LeCrenier became our leader. She was a loving caring talented person, who saw that we had a knowledge and love of people different from ourselves and a passion for nature, and service to others. God was at work in Mrs. LeCrenier and her helpers focusing on creating girls worthy of the name “Girl Scout”. My mother and other mothers became helpers. Scouting opened for me many avenues for success that school did not. Needless to say I loved it and eventually was the 2nd girl in our troop to receive the “Golden Eaglet” award in our town[Wethersfield]. My Scouting was a supportive, nurturing community of love and sharing.
With scouting came camping. I loved the two weeks away at camp every summer. At age 14 I became a Junior counselor at a church camp. It was a beautiful site on a lovely lake. I helped with swimming and boating, (learned to smoke behind the outhouses) and have found memories of the worship services each day on the out cropping of rocks looking out to the lake. This was a communion time; awareness of those special people around us, or the beauties of the place we were in. It was at camp my name changed from Betty Ann to Rusti.
. During summers while in College (New Britton Teacher’s College) I was waterfront director of the Girl Scout Camps I had gone to as a 10 year old. The summer following my year of teaching, I was waterfront director back at Camp Alice Merritt in East Hartland Connecticut.
The scout women who were staff on Girl Scout Council also ran the camps. They were my roll models, and I decided, with their help and guidance, to give up teaching, and apply for a Scholarship from the National Girl Scout Organization to go to graduate school to become a staff person for the Girl Scouts.
The Girl Scout organization gave me the scholarship. I made applications to N.Y.U. ,U of California and U of Pittsburgh. All were outstanding schools in the field of Social Work. I was accepted at the U. of Pittsburgh.
And off I went, way-far-west to Pittsburgh School of Social Work for a two year (masters) program in Social Group Work. We learned how groups function and how leaders help them to function with a lot of Psychology. One course was dubbed “From Womb to Tomb” I loved it- me loving school, yes and I excelled as I never dreamed possible.
She was born in Hartford Conn. The daughter of Myrtle and Larry Allison. She grew up in Wethersfield CT. She received her BA in teaching at the New Britton Teacher’s College and her Masters in Social Work at the University of Pittsburgh. She worked for the Pittsburgh Girl Scout Council, Cub Scouts, Red Cross, the Washington Rock NJ Girl Scout Board of Directors, and Plainfield NJ school system. She was married June 29, 1946 to Rathbun Squires. She leaves 5 children, 10 grand children, and four great grand children.