1917 ~ 2013|
When I come to the end of the road
And the sun has set for me,
I want no rites in a gloom filled room
Why cry for a soul set free!
Miss me a little, but not for long,
And not with your head bowed low
Lolita Knowlton passed away peacefully at home, surrounded by her loving family on June 20, 2013.
She was born Carmen Dolores Castro Ramos in Chachapoyas, Peru, to Juan Castro and Carmen Ramos de Castro. She has always been called Lolita?. She was the youngest of seven. She was most likely born in 1917. Lolita attended elementary school in Chachapoyas, but her fondest memories were of the family hacienda, El Puente?, that her father bought with bushels of gold coins in the early days of the 20th century. She described El Puente as a paradise where they grew and produced everything they needed. In those days in rural Peru, girls were only allowed to attend school through the 6th grade. To attend high school she had to move to Lima. Thus, as a young teenager she crossed the Andes on muleback, accompanied by the ranch hands from the hacienda. In Lima, she became a boarder at the School of the Sacred Heart. After graduation, she worked as a secretary for the Peruvian Air Force. She was a stunning beauty. Her bosses would often send her to the Lima airport to greet dignitaries on the tarmac and escort them into town. She moved to the US in the mid-50's seeking better opportunities, leaving her large and loving family behind. She attended college in Berkeley, California.
When she completed her degree, she moved to Washington DC. There, she became reacquainted with Stewart Knowlton, a US Army colonel whom she had met briefly while he was stationed in Peru as a US military advisor to the Peruvian Army. They married in 1960. They had a long and loving marriage. Stewart died in her arms at age 91, in 2000.
Lolita was always the life of the party. She loved to throw parties, dinners, attend parties, etc. Even in her last years of life she never missed one of our parties. She would sit at the kitchen table all night regaling anyone who would listen with her many interesting stories. Lolita was a caregiver and nurturer. She befriended countless neighbors and young foreign students. The real joy and purpose in her later years was caring for her grandchildren, Katie and Alec. She and Stewart moved from Salt Lake City to Seattle, leaving behind friends and Stewart's large family to be close to their grandchildren.
Lolita gradually slowed down over the last five years. Her loving caregiver, Bree Morrell, gradually took over more and more of her care. Bree made it possible for Lolita to remain at home until the day she died.
We will miss her, but she is now free of pain and with her beloved Stewart in heaven.
Lolita was preceded in death by the love of her life, Stewart H. Knowlton, and her six brothers and sisters. She is survived by her daughter, Carina Moravec, son-in-law Brad Moravec, grandchildren Katie Moravec, Alec Moravec and Angelique Pflueger, and her loving caregiver, Bree Morrell.
At her request, a private burial took place at the Tahoma National Cemetery in Kent, on June 26, where she is buried with Stewart.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in her memory to her favorite charity, The Humane Society or to Evergreen Hospice in Kirkland.
I gave you my love and you can only guess,
How much you gave me in happiness.
I thank you for the love you each have shown,
But now it's time I traveled on alone. (MA Ramish)
Published in Salt Lake Tribune on Aug. 4, 2013