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1923 – 2018
Opal Lewis Obit
Opal passed away after a short illness at a care home in Escalon, California. She was 95 years old. Born at home in the Willamette Valley, Oregon six months after the death of her oldest sister Elsie, Opal was a gift to her grieving mother. Her early years were spent in Oregon, Nebraska and Washington States where she attended public schools, then Walla Walla Academy and college in College Place, Washington. A child of the depression, she learned how to work in order to help fund her schooling and necessities. She never had difficulties finding a steady job.
In 1955 Opal moved to California and began working on the raw boning line for a turkey processing plant in Modesto that was later acquired by Campbell’s Soup Company. There she worked for more than 40 years, first on the pie line, then as timekeeper and later a management employee in the personnel department until her retirement.
Golfing was her primary hobby as a member of the Turlock Golf and Country Club. It was not unusual for her to play 36 holes of golf on a Sunday. Two of her trophies attest to a hole-in-one shot at Dryden Golf Course in Modesto. She also belonged to the Modesto Area Model A Club where she won awards in vintage dress competitions. She also belonged to the V-8 Car Club of Modesto. Besides her Model A bearing the license plate “Opal’s A”, her favorite car was her 1966 VW bug that she (at 80 years old) could push by herself when it would not start. Travel adventures for Opal included a tour of Europe in a VW bug, visit to Scotland and England, golfing in Mexico and Canada and cruising to Alaska, as well as on the Columbia and Mississippi Rivers where she always enjoyed experiencing new scenery. She was an avid reader, preferring non-fiction and true crime stories.
A single parent, Opal was the momma bear providing food, shelter, hand-sewn clothing (she was an excellent seamstress) and transportation for her two daughters Lynn M. Hansen and Gail J. Cardoza. She was very proud of both of them.
Opal is survived by the following: two daughters, Lynn M. Hansen (Richard Anderson) of Modesto, CA and Gail J. Cardoza of Escalon, CA, a step daughter, Linda Doan of Canyon Country, CA, a stepson Eddie Barnes (Fayrene) of La Grange, CA, two granddaughters Jenni Silveira (Jim) Escalon, CA, Jan Thompson (Sean) Philomath, Oregon, one grandson Jeffery Hansen (Lisa) of Turlock, two great grandsons, Matthew Silveira of Corvallis, Oregon and Stephen Silveira of Marina, California.
Opal was predeceased by her parents Robert I. Lewis and Mernie Daisy Lewis of College Place, Washington, sister Elsie Irene Lewis of Gaston, Oregon, brother Robert R. Lewis of College Place, Washington, brother Jack Lewis of Seattle, Washington, sister Nellie Nolan of Roseburg, Oregon, sister Mary Beason of Portland, Oregon, sister Grayce Lobek of Salem, Oregon and son-in-law Calvin Cardoza of Escalon, California.
Her service was private. For those who knew Opal and wish to make memorial contributions in her memory, her grateful family would appreciate donations to Community Hospice, Modesto, CA, who were so kind and helpful during her last days.

The Escalon (Calif.) Times
July 4, 2018