Bettie Zane Paul, age 88, passed away on November 10, 2020, after a long battle with Parkinson’s Disease. She was loved by many and will be sorely missed here on this earth. We look forward to a heavenly reunion.
Bettie was born in Taft, California, on March 17, 1932, to Oscar and Nellie Collins. When she was young they moved to Avenal, California. She graduated from Avenal High School in 1949. Oscar was in the Army and stationed in Korea so she, her sister, and her mom moved to Japan. Her high school sweetheart (Donald E. Brewster) traveled over to visit not long after. They were married there in October, 1949, in three weddings – civil, religious, and traditional Japanese. They returned to California and established their home in Avenal.
They had three children: Karen, Craig, and Ron. Bettie was very involved in the lives of her children and the community. Many of the Avenal “kids” remember her as their Scout Leader. She also worked in Avenal for the Reef-Sunset Elementary School District.
In 1976, Don and Bettie moved to Bass Lake, California. Bettie worked at the newly established Yosemite High School in Oakhurst. In June, 1979, Don passed away from cancer.
Bettie was blessed with a second love. She married Emil J. Paul on July 4, 1980. This marriage added Emil’s two daughters to the family: Cinde and Donna. Bettie and Emil made their home at Bass Lake. They purchased the Bass Lake Theater and added on the Show Boat Ice Cream Parlor. She also worked in real estate and with the local ambulance company. For seventeen years she served on the Bass Lake School Board.
In 2002, they moved to a new home in Coarsegold. While in Bass Lake and Coarsegold, they were both involved in the Elks’ Lodge, the Lion’s Club (26 years and Bettie was the first female member), the American Legion and the American Legion Auxiliary. They were a part of many community events and fundraisers. They regularly traveled to the Veteran’s Hospital in Fresno to host activities such as bingo.
Bettie loved her family and friends. The Bass Lake home always had an open door. Many have memories of celebrations, reunions, birthdays, and weddings there. If you were the last to arrive and missed out on a bed, there was always floor space and food. Pets were welcomed as well! If you didn’t find them at home, you knew they were traveling. This was another passion. It started with their honeymoon in Tahiti/Fiji and continued, including Matzatlan, Mexico, Australia, Costa Rica, Alaska, and more.
In 2017, due to health concerns, they chose to move into the newly-built California Veteran’s Home in Fresno. There they found old friends and made new ones.
Those preceding Bettie’s death were her parents and first husband. Surviving her are her husband, Emil Paul, and her children: Karen (Mark) Lopez, Craig (Carol) Brewster, Ron (Laura) Brewster, Cinde (Joe) Olephant, and Donna (Bill) Mattern. She also has 7 grandchildren: Brent (Brittany) Brewster, Zach (Elizabeth) Lopez, Micha (Abe) Miller, Kevin (Rachel) Brewster, Steven (Katelynne) Brewster, Will Mattern, Amanda (Franklin) Phillips and 13 great-grandchildren.
Arrangements are being made by Palm Memorial-Sierra Chapel of Oakhurst.
Graveside services will be held at Oakhill Cemetery in Oakhurst, California on Thursday, November 19th, at 10:00 a.m. for the family.
A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date for both family and friends.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Sierra Pines Church in Oakhurst or Nancy Hines Hospice in Fresno.