Nancy Needham-Beachin


Nancy, an only child in a very close family, started baton twirling at the age of 4 with the Hi-Stepper Majorettes, St. Catharines, Ontario Canada, under the direction of professional twirlers Joan and Barbara Lownsbury. With her tight blonde curls and all sequined costumes, and of course, her vivacious smile, she captured Little Miss Majorette of Ontario and Canada when she was 6 years of age. At twelve years, she changed clubs and worked with coach Judy Dearborn-Johnston with the St. Catharines Lakeside Baton and Drum Corps.

Nancy wore many, many hats, some which included wife to Bob Beachin, married September 24, 1983, cook, administrator, worker, top mom to Matthew born May 2, 1991, Canadian Baton Twirling Federation Sanctions Officer, Hi-Stepper Corps Co-director, badge adjudicator, CBTF Group Manual and Badge Manual researcher, CBTF Lifetime Achievement winner, Ontario Baton Twirling Association and CBTF Volunteer of the Year, OBTA Technical Rep, Co-coach of “the Dream Team” and it goes on and on and on. Nancy was a dear friend and mentor to all her athletes and friends.

In 1991, prior to Matthew’s birth, Nancy was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (MS). However, this did not deter Nancy. As Technical Director of the 1994 World Baton Twirling Championships that were held in Newmarket, Ontario, Canada, Nancy worked endless hours with the Director, as a volunteer. The championships were a huge success!!

In 1997, Nancy co-coached “The Dream Team” with Kim Genton, Canada’s World Team gold medallists. After hours of training and rehearsing, Nancy, Bob and Matthew and the team travelled to Waikiki, Hawaii for the World Baton Twirling Championships. With Nancy’s support, patience and expertise, the team went on to win the bronze medallion. Canada was so proud of everyone’s accomplishments.

Nancy was a hero to a lot of people. People who respected her, her colleagues; loved her, her family and friends; and adored her, her only son, Matthew.

This hero left us too early in 1999, however, will never be forgotten, especially in the world of baton twirling.