Thelma Louise Robinson
Thelma Louise Robinson, 95, was born on January 13, 1913 in Hornitos, California and passed away peacefully at her daughter's home in Modesto, California on November 10, 2008. She spent her early years between Hornitos and Merced Falls and attended schools in both communities. She married Kermit T. Robinson in 1931 and after spending six years on the Robinson Ranch near Merced the two built their home and settled in Snelling.
Thelma was very active in her community. During World War II she was one of the spotters responsible for standing at the top of a tower between Merced and Snelling to spot enemy planes. She was a 4-H Leader and her and Kermit owned and ran a skating ring in Snelling for many years. She was active in the Women's Club and many of her recipes were printed in annual cookbooks sold for fundraisers. She was active in helping her community get a community center and park and enjoyed participating in fund raising events and gatherings.
Thelma was an active member of the Novara Rebekah Lodge in Snelling for more than 30 years. She served as a state officer to the Rebekah Lodge as well as Noble Grand of the local chapter several times. She attended meetings faithfully up until this past year. During her tenure with the lodge she was part of the State Noble Grand's Marching Team and traveled to installations all over the state as well as events throughout the United States. In 2006 she was one of the Grand Marshalls for the Merced County Sesquicentennial and boasted she and Kermit had won best costume when the County celebrated its 100th anniversary in 1956.
Known for her cooking, Thelma completed a cookbook in 2002, which featured her famous ravioli recipe as well as the many candies she was famous for, sauces, and her much requested enchiladas. Thelma loved to dance and when she was 16, was crowned State Charleston Champion. It was at a dance hall that she met Kermit, and for years the two could be seen on their anniversaries dancing a waltz or two to music performed at a Lawrence Welk performance.
Thelma also loved to play the slot machines and enjoyed many trips to Tahoe with her husband, and later, daughters, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. She also enjoyed fishing, hunting and camping. Her family spent many weekends water skiing on the family ranch, fishing, bird hunting locally or hunting the Sierra Nevadas or Colorado for deer, and camping at Silver Lake. Known as a good shot, she often told the story of her winning a trap shoot during a cruise in which she surprised all the men in competition by taking first.
Thelma was preceded in death by her husband Kermit and her sons Ted and Terry Robinson; two grandchildren, and one great grandson.
Thelma is survived by her daughters, Janette Arnold of Modesto and Dennise Griffin of Merced; 12 grandchildren, 28 great-grandchildren, and 18 great-great grandchildren.
Visitation for Thelma will be held on Thursday, November 13, 2008 from 5:00 P.M. until 8:00 P.M. in the Chapel of Ivers & Alcorn Funeral Home in Merced. The funeral service will be held at 10:00 A.M. also in the Chapel of Ivers & Alcorn Funeral Home in Merced with a graveside service to follow at the Snelling Cemetery where a Rebekah Ceremony will be performed.
In lieu of flowers the family has requested that donations in Thelma's name be made to the Novara Rebekah Lodge in Snelling or Hospice.
All funeral arrangements are under the direction of Ivers & Alcorn Funeral Home in Merced, California.