Thelma Callan Birkhead
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6/5/1920 - 9/27/2012
Thelma Callan Birkhead, 92, of Rocklin, Calif., passed away on Thursday, September 27, 2012. She was born to the late Leonard Gus Callan and LaVanche LeMoyne Callan, June 5, 1920 in Dardanelle, Arkansas. She graduated valedictorian of Dardanelle High in 1938 and later that year married the love of her life, the late Hoyle Bentley Birkhead. They lived in Atlanta, Georgia until her husband was deployed in 1943 with the Army Air Corp to the Pacific Theater. Thelma then moved with her mother and sister to Berkeley, Calif., and worked for several years at the Oakland Army Base. After the war, she and Hoyle settled in Orinda, Calif., and Thelma was a very active community and church volunteer while raising her two children, Ron Birkhead and the late Russell Birkhead. In her fifties, Thelma found a new passion when she returned to work as a Real Estate Agent for Century Twenty-One, earning successive awards as a Top Producer. In 1989 she and Hoyle moved to Rocklin, Calif., and after his death in 1990, she immersed herself in a myriad of volunteer activities, remaining constantly on the go until suffering a stroke in 2010. A life-long member of the Presbyterian Church, she was very involved in the Roseville First Presbyterian Church, including serving as an officer in Polaris and hosting an every Tuesday night Bible group at her home for fifteen years. Passionate about working with young children of the congregation, she taught Sunday school for many years. She also loved her work with both the Rocklin Chamber of Commerce and the Rocklin Friends of the Library, where she served as an officer and spearheaded the Children's Story Time.
Thelma is survived by her son, Ron Birkhead of Auburn, Calif., and his wife, Frances; her sister, Margaret Miller of Vancouver, Washington; former daughter-in-law, Frances Jacobs; grandsons, William Birkhead and Michael Birkhead; granddaughter, Robynne Birkhead Rutledge; two great-grandchildren, Tyler Birkhead and Destynni Rutledge; her nieces, Sharon Grechowsky and Gayle Miller; and nephews, Michael and Jon Miller.
Thelma truly never met a stranger. She always saw the glass as "half full" and spent her life sharing her half with others.
Family and friends are welcome to a memorial service celebrating Thelma's life on Saturday, October 13, 2012 at 11 a.m. at Centerpoint Community Church. The family requests in lieu of flowers, donations in honor of Thelma's life and her two favorite activities can be made to either of the following: Rocklin Friends of the Library 4890 Granite Drive, Rocklin, CA 95677 http://rocklinfriends.org or Centerpoint Community Church 515 Sunrise Avenue, Roseville, CA 95661 for Thelma Birkhead Memorial for Children's Sunday School program.
Published in Gold Country Media Newspapers on Oct. 5, 2012