Fort Worth resident Janie Martin Beggs lived a life full of color, laughter and love.
Her energy and her wish to entertain everyone allowed her to host the biggest names in Fort Worth at her gatherings. And, according to two of Beggs’ daughters, her impeccable sense of style and quick wit made their mother the life of any gathering.
Beggs died in the early hours of Sept. 12, 2023. She was 97.
Her life was a tapestry of good times, long-cherished memories and connections that wove her life into the lives of many others in Fort Worth, said her oldest daughter and namesake, Janie Martin Beggs.
Even at her funeral, those lasting connections were clear. The melodies of Jazz Cafe’s Nick Kithas and Friends band were at her graveside service, followed by the tunes of Fort Worth’s Johnny Reno at the reception.
The music and dancing celebrated her life and echoed her lifelong passions.
Born to Winnie and L.C. Martin, Beggs was the youngest sibling of Nellie, Cat and Sonny. The Fort Worth native graduated from R.L. Paschal High School in 1943.
Their love story began with nights dancing at The Casino and continued with their marriage on June 28, 1950.
The Beggs Ranch in Aledo became their home for over six decades. Beggs’ two daughters, Janie and Judy, fondly recall their “idyllic” childhood there.
“We lived out on a ranch, and the ’50s were great. We had a wonderful, ideal life,” Judy said.
Sundays were reserved for church at St. Andrews, followed by cherished family time at Daniel Drug on West Seventh Street, where Janie and George drank coffee while their four children sipped cherry Cokes.
From her earliest days, Janie Beggs’ love of jewelry was legendary, with David Webb being a favorite designer.
“When people admired something she wore, she’d often quip, ‘Webb, David Webb,’” her oldest daughter said.
But beyond her jewelry, Beggs’ fashion sense was timeless.
“Look at this black dress,” her oldest daughter said, pointing to a family photo. “It’s very vintage and could be worn today.”
Yet, amid her zest for life and style, Beggs’ heart always belonged to her family. Her love for George was unparalleled, and their bond was evident to all who knew them.
“That was her life — her husband and children,” Judy said.
Janie’s love for flowers was another defining trait. Almost daily, she’d visit The Enchanted Florist, admiring the vibrant arrangements and sharing moments with the shop owners over the years, including Jossie “JoJo” Pombo, the store’s first owner, and Terri McKinney, the store’s current owner.
McKinney always says that Janie was more than just a customer; she was a ray of sunshine that brightened the store every time she walked in. With her impeccable taste, Janie thought of flowers as nature’s way of adding color to our lives, her daughters said.
Judy also remembers how much her mother loved those flowers.
“She loved their colors. JoJo had all these great colors,” Judy said.
Beyond her love for dance, fashion and flowers, Beggs was an adventurer at heart. Despite never learning to swim, she water-skied across Eagle Mountain Lake with the “Ski Group,” made up of girlfriends she grew up with in Fort Worth.
Some were fellow students at Paschal High School, but others attended North Side High School or Arlington Heights High School. Regardless, they met at Eagle Mountain Lake every week to water-ski.
Beggs was preceded in death by her parents, siblings and her husband. She leaves behind a legacy of love, joy and unforgettable memories, her daughters said.
Matthew Sgroi is a reporting fellow for the Fort Worth Report. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. At the Fort Worth Report, news decisions are made independently of our board members and financial supporters. Read more about our editorial independence policy here. Read more about our editorial independence policy here.