Romelia "Rickie" Tetrick
1926 - 2021
Born on August 20, 1926 in Monticello, NM, 73-year Bishop local, Romelia "Rickie" Tetrick nee Glavis, died on September 3, 2021 in Sacramento, CA. She was 95.
Her father, George Glavis, came to America as a 14-year-old stowaway on a Greek ship heading to New York harbor where he jumped ship and swam to shore when discovered by a ship's officer. Relying on tips from the tight-knit Greek émigré community to find employment in New York City and then Chicago, George eventually made his way to New Mexico, where he found work as a foreman on the railroad. He soon married Monica Barela, a tall beauty of Navajo and Spanish ancestry.
Romelia's first home, was a simple adobe brick house with a packed dirt floor that her mother, swept clean every day. The family shared an outdoor wood-fired oven with other members of the Monticello neighborhood. Her mother rolled her own loose-leaf tobacco cigarettes and was known for her excellent chile rellenos and flour tortillas that she rolled out with the sawed-off and sanded end of a broomstick; Rickie always joked that her own tortillas always came out square in shape, but her mother's broomstick rollers remain in Rickie's kitchen to this day.
During the Great Depression, when Romelia was six, the family migrated westward in hopes of finding work, first to Brawley, CA, where her father worked at a restaurant owned by a fellow Greek. It was in Brawley that Rickie's parents welcomed a baby boy, Jimmy. Following the lure of factory jobs in Southern California, the family moved again when Rickie was ten, living in the Los Feliz neighborhood of Los Angeles. Shortly after the family's third child, George, was born, the family moved to So Cal's South Bay region, living in Hawthorne and then Alondra Park, now Gardena. There, Romelia's parents eventually bought a little house on Lemoli Avenue where the three Glavis' kids grew up and made lifelong friends, including Gretchen and Mary Hasche, whose parents had befriended the family when they first moved to the neighborhood.
One evening, 16-year-old Rickie was out in the driveway visiting with her girlfriends Gretchen and Mary when a jalopy full of boys, including 18-year-old Marvin Tetrick, drove past on their way to meet a girl whose address they had scribbled on a scrap of paper. Marv spied the young women in the driveway and figured this was the place. It turned out to be the wrong address but the right girl. Rickie thought Marv was the right boy, too. The handsome couple announced their engagement around the time that Marv was drafted into the United States Army in 1943, the same year Romelia graduated from Leuzinger High School.
Marv volunteered for the Army's paratrooper division, entering the 517th Parachute Regimental Combat Team. Returning from training for a five-day leave, Marvin married Romelia on March 31, 1944, shipping out to the European combat theatre in June of the same year. Marv saw action in Italy, Belgium and France, surviving two hard winters on the front and fighting in the bloody Battle of the Bulge. Meanwhile, back in Gardena, Rickie joined the war effort as a riveter on an airplane production line for Northrop Aircraft and belonged to the Civil Air Patrol. As the war concluded, Marv's team became part of the occupying force in Berlin until he returned home. He and Rickie welcomed a son, David, in 1946 and soon followed Marv's lifelong buddy Gene Snyder to Bishop, CA for employment at the Division of Highways, now known as Cal Trans, in 1948. Marv and Rickie's second child, Donna, arrived in 1949.
There's no denying the palpable chemistry between Rickie and Marv from the moment they first laid eyes on each other. Many have commented on it over the years. The charisma they exuded together also attracted a wide-ranging group of friends. As soon as they arrived in Bishop, the Tetricks began building a social network they would enjoy their entire lives.
Local legend Ray "Fish" Milovich used to tell the story about the first time he met Rickie and Marv and on Main Street shortly after their move to Bishop. "There goes a damn cute couple," he said. "We've got to help them get settled!"
In September of 1957, the Tetricks moved into a new house in the Westridge Manor neighborhood in West Bishop, the place they would call home for the rest of their lives and where they would raise Dave, Donna, two of their seven grandchildren and over two dozen Desert Tortoises. From her headquarters there on Meadow Lane, Rickie involved herself in sundry community activities. Along with several of her friends, Rickie was a member of the Bishop chapter of Beta Sigma Phi and became a charter member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Ladies Auxiliary. A Cub Scout den mother and a room mother at Bishop Elementary School, Rickie always showed up at school meetings or sporting events to root on her kids, quietly taking care of family business. Rickie's sense of duty to family, community and country outweighed personal convenience, no matter how difficult right action may prove
Lifelong friend Betty Jo Forbes recalls Rickie as the consummate good sport who could always be counted on to keep a secret. For Rickie, anything imparted in confidence was strictly "campfire talk," family shorthand for holding sensitive information close to the vest.
Over the years, Rickie and Marv jumped at the chance to travel extensively domestically, including Hawaii and Alaska, but also enjoyed lively international travel excursions with friends to such places as Bora Bora, Hong Kong, Singapore, Bangkok, Mexico, Canada and several European destinations. But for Rickie, or "The Boss," as she was affectionately known, home was where she always wished to be.
There are countless stories to tell about Rickie, like the time she hit a runaway cow while driving the new family car down Line Street or the time she banned homemade soda pop-making after a batch of root beer exploded all over the pantry, but the most important thing one needs to know about Romelia is that she was the revered family matriarch and a true force of nature.
Though she did not suffer fools lightly and would let you know with a single withering glance that you were displeasing her or possibly running the risk of having the family name printed in The Inyo Register's police blotter, Rickie was also quick to laugh and possessed a sparkle in her eye until her last few days on this earth. She was the driving influence behind the family's large family reunions that nobody ever wanted to miss. Romelia was welcoming to all, fiercely protective of friends and family and somebody you never ever wanted to cross – or else! We will miss her and her feisty brand of love for her brood, to be sure.
As far back as anybody in the family can remember, Rickie was the person that always walked visitors out to their cars when it was time to leave; who stood out under the tree at the edge of the yard in the watching family or friends driving down Meadow Lane; who stood watching and waving, with a little tear in her eye, until the traveler's car turned at the stop sign at Manor Market and onto Line Street, eventually melting from sight. The image of Rickie standing and waving is hard to forget.
And now, instead of The Boss doing the waving, it is her loved ones gathered out in the street waving farewell to her, tears streaming, until our beloved matriarch fades from view … She may have turned that final corner at the stop sign, but Romelia shall never be far from our thoughts and remains ever in our hearts.
Romelia is preceded in death by parents George Glavis, Sr and Monica Glavis nee Barela, brother Jimmy Glavis and wife Johnny, nephew Vance Glavis, niece Cathy Glavis, sister-in-law Cecilia Glavis, son-in-law Richard Gollihur and her beloved husband of 68 years, Marvin David Tetrick.
Rickie is survived by her cherished brother George Glavis, son David Tetrick, daughter Donna Gollihur; grandchildren Andrea Tetrick (Karen Robb), Kristen Tetrick, Jason Tetrick (Sunee), Jereme Tetrick (Gina), Garrett Gollihur (Amy), Leslie Springer (J.R.), Janelle Gollihur, nephews Anthony Glavis (Tommy Luna), George Edward Glavis, Richard Glavis (Becky), Robert Glavis (Teresa); nieces Connie Glavis Gore and Stephanie Glavis Sa Mano, eleven great-grandchildren, four great-great-grandchildren and numerous treasured friends.
In lieu of flowers the family asks that you please consider donating in Romelia's name to the charity of your choice.
Published by Inyo Register on Sep. 18, 2021.
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2 Entries
I will always remember Rickie as being so sweet and friendly. I grew up with the Tetrick family on Meadow Lane. It was a wonderful neighborhood. See you in Heaven Rickie! JoEllen
JoEllen Langford
September 28, 2021
Very sorry to hear of Rickie Tetrick´s passing. She and Marv were neighbors for many, many years, and Rickie was a wonderful person. It was always a treat to get a stack of Rickie and Grandma Glavis´ homemade tortillas. Rickie and Marv were quite the team and Marv´s old black pickup truck in their driveway on Meadow Lane should have been registered as a national landmark. Condolences to David, Donna, their children, grandchildren and to Marv and Rickie´s many treasured friends throughout the years. Liz Eastham
Liz Eastham
September 21, 2021
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