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Agnes Ann Zumwalt

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Agnes Ann Zumwalt Obituary

Agnes Ann Zumwalt, 95, of Colusa, CA died in her home on May 30, 2014. She passed away peacefully among family members and caregivers.

Ann was born on September 18, 1918, in Oklahoma City, OK to Oscar and Agnes Ann (Monahan) Salzman. She came from a pioneering family that was involved in the schools, banks, and oil wells of early Oklahoma. Her maternal grandparents participated in the first Land Run of 1889.

After graduating from Minco (Oklahoma) High School, Ann went to Oklahoma College for Women on an art scholarship. In 1940, she moved north to attend the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana. Ann lived in her aunt's home, a boarding house for young college men. Between classes she danced to Big Band music at the USO club, ice skated, and met numerous dates at the corner soda fountain. She received a bachelor's degree in Home Economics with a minor in Chemistry.

During WW II, Ann worked in Chicago as an aviation fuel tester in the laboratory of Standard Oil. When the war ended and the soldiers returned home, Ann was laid off. She decided to follow her father's unrealized dream and moved to California. She settled in San Francisco. Like her mother, Ann chose high school teaching as her profession. She earned a teaching credential in Homemaking from the University of California at Berkeley.

In 1947, Ann moved to the small rural town of Colusa to teach Home Economics at the local high school. When she arrived the temperature was over 100 degrees and the prune harvest was in full operation. She considered taking the bus back to 'the city'. Soon her vivacious personality and cooking talents caught the attention of Mr. Ivy Zumwalt of Colusa. They married in 1950. 'Annie' was an enthusiastic supporter of Ivy's business, Zumwalt Travel Agency, and together they took many trips near and far. They were married 51 years. After Ivy's death, Ann became the principal partner of Ivy G. Zumwalt and Associates, a rice land leasing business.

Ann approached motherhood with zest. Her love for her daughters was steadfast in spite of the grey hairs they caused her. She was active in the Colusa County Fair parades and exhibits, 4-H, Sunday School, PTA, Girl Scouts, AFS, Young Life, and the Colusa Ski Club. She turned the garage of her Butte Vista home into a neighborhood playhouse. Years later she joked that the playhouse had saved her sanity and marriage.

She was devoted to her grandchildren and never hesitated to ask each of them about their goals, challenges and most importantly, their romantic interests. When they were young, Ann drove them all over town and taught them how to 'cut the square'. To her delight, she became a great-grandmother twice in 2011.

During her 67 years in Colusa, Ann was a member of the Butte View Racquet Club, Omega Nu, Trinity Methodist Church, the Community Theater Foundation and First Presbyterian Church where she served as elder. At Christmas time, Ann and her crew installed tissue-paper stained glass in the windows of the Presbyterian Church. She painted plywood nativity scenes for churches, working in her backyard among her poodles and many cats. She made signs for the Methodist Church's spaghetti luncheon fundraisers. In her golden years, Ann stored piles of signs under the area rug in her entry causing the rug to warp. More than one person tripped coming through her front door.

Published in Colusa-Sun-Herald from June 11 to June 18, 2014
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