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Laura M. Gatch


1926 - 2010 Obituary Condolences
Laura M. Gatch Obituary
Laura M. Gatch died at home in Forest Ranch, Ca on June 9, 2010 after a short illness with cancer.

Laura was born Laura Maybell Shook in Los Angeles, CA, September 9, 1926 to Westley Emmet Shook and Laura Maybell Shook (nee Owen). She grew up in Southern California, mostly Riverside and Rubidoux. In her youth she took violin lessons, played piano, and enjoyed involvement in gymnastics.

Also in her youth she started employment. Over her working life she had a diversified career, including working in a tank assembly plant during WWII, a poultry processing plant in the 1950's, waitressing, clerical and bookkeeping for the City of Riverside, home child care and medical billing. After moving to Paradise in 1976 she kept the books for Heritage Land Company. Moving to Morgan Hill where her husband, Roy's work took the family in 1979, she switched careers again by taking bus driving training. She drove busses in Santa Clara County and then Paradise where she was known to her kids as "Miss Laura".

Even though employed, Laura found time to be involved in community events, from being a den mother for Cub Scouts to maintaining Little League uniforms. She also enjoyed Square Dancing and Round Dancing. Over the three plus decades she danced she was a member of the Highland Swingers in Redlands, the Inland Empire B Sharps, and the Merry Twirlers of Glendora. She also enjoyed membership in the Morgan Hillbillies and the Paradise Ridge Runners where she was treasurer for several years, and served as the club's historian, as well.

Not one to be idle in retirement, she drove the veterans van for medical appointments in Martinez and was involved with the Butte County Veterans Council. Very important to her was the American Legion Auxiliary. She held many offices, the most recent being secretary/treasurer, Girl's State chairperson, and membership chair. In addition, Laura took on the responsibility for writing and distributing the Auxiliary newsletter.

Other interests included reading, sewing, bowling and traveling. She and Roy were avid RV'ers going on Good Neighbor Sam and square dance trips. Their personal travels took them to Canada, throughout New England down the East coast to Florida, to Mexico and Alaska, Nebraska, Texas, and several times to Hawaii, once "house-sitting" there for a period of five months.

She was predeceased by both parents, two sisters and a brother, her firstborn son, Larry Wilson, and her beloved husband of 36 Years, Roy P. Gatch, who died in 2005.

Her legacy is her children, Ronald Gary MacPherson (Carlene) of Kaneohe, HI, Laura Kathleen MacPherson, (John H. Schosanski) of Napa, CA, David Alan Carman of Perris, CA, Allison Beverley Mayo (Steve) of Forest Ranch, CA, Arthur Westley Hazleton (Laura Lefferts-Hazleton) of Los Banos, CA and her many grandchildren, Wendy Carman-Coffman (Brian Coffman) of Austin, Texas, Harmony MacPherson of Brooklyn, NY, Rachel Cudia (David) of Paradise, CA, Rayna Zaragoza (Andres) of Redlands, CA, Liam Lefferts and Laurel Hazleton of Los Banos, CA and Azalea Bell (David) of Parker, CO.

She is also survived by 8 great grandchildren.

Saturday June 19, 2010 a graveside celebration of her life will be held at Glen Oaks Memorial Cemetery in Chico at 1:00 p.m. with reception following at Veteran's Memorial Hall in Paradise.
Published in Paradise Post from June 15 to July 15, 2010
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