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Katherine Tofflemire passed away peacefully in Alameda on July 12, 2014, following a long illness. Kay was the last surviving child of Lino and Desideria Brusuelas, of Tularosa, N.M.

Family was most important to her as she often shared her happy memories of growing up on a ranch in Tularosa. That’s where her love of gardening began. She also enjoyed oil painting and was a talented crafter.

She was retired from AT&T where she worked as a telephone operator and was a member of the Telephone Pioneers.

She is survived by her son Mark Tofflemire and wife Jane, her daughter Lois Baxes and husband Michael, and her grandson William Leoppard III, her sisters-in-law Mary Salazar and Juanita Brusuelas as well as many nieces and nephews.

She will be greatly missed by all who loved and cherished her.

The family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations in Kay’s memory be made to the American Cancer Society or the Association for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

Greer Family Mortuary and Cremation Services FD 1408


Elizabeth Cochran Botts Kreitz died July 9, 2014, with her son Bob and daughter-in-law Tina holding her hands. Grandma Betty was 93 years old and filled each of her days with joyful living.

Elizabeth was born Feb. 23, 1921, in Baltimore, the oldest child of Robert Thomas Botts and Sarah Tilgman Cochran Botts. Her brother, Robert, and sister Jane followed quickly. When she was six, her mother died.

Betty’s strong sense of family was formed then.

Betty graduated from Franklin High School in Reisterstown, Md. and after two years of college joined one of the first groups of women to enlist in the WAVES. She trained at Hunter College in New York City and U.S. Naval Training School, Indiana University. Her first orders were to the Naval Air Station (NAS), Alameda. That assignment would change her life.

She met a stunning, tall, blonde Ralph Kreitz at NAS. The two married in 1944 at St. Lawrence O’Toole in Oakland after a whirlwind romance. Their only child, Robert, was born in 1945. Their joy and Alameda family life was shattered when Ralph contracted polio in 1946, causing Betty to return to work at NAS in the Supply Department until her retirement in 1976. Betty was a woman of incredible strength and character. She supported Ralph as he lived with the effects of polio for 22 years and raised a remarkable son.

Friends were a central part of Betty’s life. The Stitch and Chatter Club met weekly for over 65 years. These eight women were the essence of compassionate, supportive, creative friends and were ahead of their time.

In retirement, Betty lived a life of travel and fun with her dear friends. Ireland, England, Canada, Mexico, Hawaii and numerous states were on her active itinerary. She shared many trips and activities with her dearest friend and soul mate, John Sheffield.

They danced, laughed and loved being with her grandchildren. Roberta Elizabeth, her namesake, Erin Christina and her husband Jack Shirey, Tyler Robert and his wife Carla Menchini received Betty’s unconditional love and great cooking. Great grandchildren Makenzie, Emerson, Finley Shirey and Ethan Kreitz brought joy and smiles to Grandma Betty in her last years.

A memorial mass and celebration of Elizabeth will be held Aug. 16, 1 p.m. at Newman Hall, Holy Spirit Chapel, Berkeley. Elizabeth enjoyed her garden and colorful flowers. The family requests you wear bright colors and do not send flowers.

Donations in Elizabeth’s honor can be made to: Mastick Senior Center, 1155 Santa Clara Ave., Alameda, CA 94501

Born in Oakland to the late Michael Angelo Grappo and Jane Walcutt, Suzanne passed away peacefully in Alameda.

She is survived by siblings Barbara (Martin) Grappo Lampe, Carole Grappo, David (Anne) Grappo, Jeffrey Grappo, M. Steven (Kim) Grappo and Donald Grappo, and was predeceased by her brother Thomas Grappo.

Prior to moving to Calistoga, Suzanne was a longtime resident of Alameda and a devout Catholic and member of St. Barnabas and St. Philip Neri churches in Alameda.

A mass of christian burial was celebrated on Friday, July 11, at St. Barnabas Church followed by the committal at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Oakland.

Greer Family Mortuary and Cremation Services FD 1408