16 June 2011

Birthday Bio -- Mom -- Lavinia Cresap, Mrs. John B. Gilbert 16 June 1915 - 10 Dec 1997

  • She was the oldest of four children born and raised in the Phillipines.
  • She matured very fast -- pictured here she is only 10 years old, her sister, Florence on the right is only 2 years younger. left to right: Ida May, Lavinia, Andrew Bruce, Florence Cresap
  • She grew to be nearly six feet tall, had the carriage of a queen, but was a bit of a trickster.  
  • She always seemed like a fairytale figure.  
  • She could play harmonica, stand on her hands, make the best billy goat cookies and grape jelly.
  • She learned to fly a plane in the 1920's landing on dirt fields and soloing over Clear Lake. 
  • She was the first in her family to go to college -- University of California, Berkeley class of 1936.
  • She managed to be at great world events -- the 1936 Berlin Olympics where she saw Hitler, Mussolini's Italy, and Pearl Harbor the day it was bombed.  
  • She stood up against McCarthyism, helped establish the first Orinda library, volunteered at Contra Costa County's juvenile hall, and was on Cal's scholarship committee. 
  • She was an active member of St. Stephen's Episcopal congregation in Orinda and the DAR.
  • She was an independent voter.
  • She was a founding member of the first book group I ever heard of back in the 1950s. 
  • She was clever with her hands -- a terrific seamstress and weaver.
  • She loved to sail.
  • She was rarely idle, and each Christmas her Wizard of Oz and angel figures adorn our tree.   
  • She raised four rascally children while her husband traveled at least half the time for his job.
  • She loved her grandchildren and kept the freezer full of popsicles.
  • She is missed every single day.
Happy Birthday, Mom!

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