2017-03-09 / Obituaries

Isabel West

On March 2, 2017, Isabel West passed away with her son and daughter-in-law at her side. She was 83.

Born Nov. 18, 1933, in Vera, Spain, Isabel fled the turbulent Spanish Civil War as a young girl and immigrated with her parents, Gabino and Serapia Vinatena, to Coalinga, Calif., where her father was first a sheepherder in the central California foothills.

Meeting at Fresno State, she and Charles “Chuck” West married in 1953. Chuck was an agricultural appraiser for Wells Fargo, a manager for Producers Cotton Oil and Firebaugh Cotton Gin and a cattle rancher. The Wests raised their children in southern Arizona, Los Banos and Gridley, Calif. Isabel served as a Spanish translator for Head Start and the U.S. Census Bureau and volunteered in her children’s classrooms. The family enjoyed countless camping and fishing trips.

The couple joined the Mariposa community in 1993, establishing a 30-acre ostrich ranch way down a dirt road. Widowed in 1997, Isabel moved to another Mariposa property where she happily became a next-door neighbor to her daughter and four grandsons and, later, new son-in-law. Here she enjoyed the beauty of daily walks, Mariposa flowers and active wildlife. She was happiest when engaging with family outdoors, especially visiting great-grandchildren.

A lifelong musician, Isabel was a founding member violinist of the Fresno Philharmonic (1954), she performed as the Concertmaster with the Mariposa Symphony Orchestra (2002-2014) and was part of the worship team at St. Joseph’s, her beloved church home.

In later years, Isabel volunteered with her church’s Ladies Guild and Manna House. She was very fond of spending time with her caregivers.

Her family is comforted knowing she is with her Savior Jesus Christ.

Isabel is survived by her children, Charles West and wife Kim of Carmichael, Teresa Hawes Prettol and husband Tom of Mariposa; eight grandchildren and their spouses: Brandon, Chad (Kim), Corey ( Jenna), Sera ( Jake), Billy (Sarah), Chris (Bethany), Casey (Corrie), and David (Melanie); nine great-grandchildren.

A memorial service with luncheon to follow will be held at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church on Saturday, March 11, at noon. Remembrances may be made to Manna House and Helping Hands.

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