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Blanche Lucille West Brouillard

1917 - 2015 Obituary Condolences
Blanche Lucille West Brouillard Obituary
BLANCHE LUCILLE WEST BROUILLARD July 20, 1917- November 13, 2015 Blanche Brouillard, age 98, of Chico joined the love of her life her husband, Fire Chief Elmer Brouillard, on November 13, 2015 where they are dancing on the clouds surrounded by their many loved ones and friends. She died suddenly of a pulmonary embolism surrounded by her daughter, son-in-law and her adored cat Pandora. Blanche was born on her family's ranch in Yerington, Nevada to Edward Anderson (Andy) and Carrie Blanche (Gifford) West. Blanche's family moved to California in 1927, first to San Francisco and finally to Chico. She made many life long friends while attending school in Chico. She graduated from Chico High School in 1935 and from Chico State in 1939 with a BS degree and an elementary teaching credential. Blanche's first teaching job was in a one-room schoolhouse outside of Orland, California. She liked teaching in this environment so she moved to Grass Valley, California to teach in a one-room schoolhouse until her marriage. Blanche married her high school sweetheart, Elmer L Brouillard, on June 3, 1941 in Reno, Nevada at her Aunt's home. She then settled into married life with her firefighter husband. Blanche's life was devoted to her husband and his chosen career as a firefighter and her two daughters. The fire service was her life and she was the woman beside the man, helping Elmer build his career to be the Chico Fire Chief from 1953 1977 when his career was cut short by the diagnosis of Parkinson's disease. As Elmer held many state and national association offices so did Blanche. She was instrumental in starting the Chico Fire Department Ladies Auxiliary who, among other things, fed the firefighters on long fires, took care of burned out victims and arranged the retirement gifts for retiring firefighters. Blanche was very active in the community, these activities included volunteering at Enloe Hospital, CHS Class of 1935 reunion committee, member of Josephine Chapter #104 of Eastern Star, Past President of Western Fire Chiefs Ladies Auxiliary, Blue Bird and Campfire Girls Leader, Trinity Methodist Church, Job's Daughters and many more. After Elmer's retirement they traveled in their camper and enjoyed many organized tours all over the USA making new friends along the way. After Elmer's death in 1986, she spent time with her grandchildren. She was an excellent seamstress and spent hours reading. Many of her friends and family were the recipients of her many crocheted projects. Blanche's dream of going to Bornholm, Denmark, where her Grandfather was born was realized twice where she met long lost cousins and built a lasting relationship with them. Her love of family history and genealogy was an important part of the life that she wanted to pass down to her grandchildren. Blanche was preceded in death by her parents, husband, Elmer Brouillard, daughter Lucille Estella Murphy, brothers Edward Clifton West and Loyd Alford (Al) West, nieces Donna Crosby and Carolyn Sellers, nephew Oliver Clark (Corky) Brouillard and several Nevada cousins. She is survived by her daughter, Diane Brouillard Kennedy, son-in-law, who she considered her son, Gregg Koechlein, her grandsons who she adored Cody Kennedy, Cory Kennedy (Castlen). Grandsons Peter, Andy, Aaron and Ryan Murphy. Great Grandson William Foster Kennedy and numerous other great grandchildren, niece Judy Taylor, nephew Dale West and niece Pat Mulder, Nevada cousins Myron and Mary Goldsworthy and Mariana O'Meara. Blanche had many friends whom she considered her family and the Ukrainian grandson that adopted her, Misha Bardashov and her devoted cat Pandora. A special thanks to Lynsey Virden, Seniors Helping Seniors of Reno, and her special staff for all they did. Services are under the direction of Brusie Funeral Home and will be held Tuesday, November 24, 2015, 11am at the Masonic Lodge 1110 W. East Ave, Chico, California with a reception to follow. Blanche had spunk and was not ready to go. "I have too much to do. I want to finish my life story and my other projects."
Published in Chico Enterprise-Record on Nov. 19, 2015
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