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Florence Oswald
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Florence Mable Oswald, 93, passed away on Wednesday, Feb. 1.

She was born on March 9, 1918 in Texas to Moman Talmadge Coburn and Cora Etta McCorcle. She was married for 65 years to Ralph Oswald, who preceded her in death in 2000. They moved from Texas to Escalon in 1938 in an old Model-T with the mattress on the roof of the car to begin a new life.

She worked for Escalon Packers and though she was unable to attend high school, she went to Modesto Jr. College when she was 39 years old, and graduated from Stanislaus State with a Bachelors Degree in Education to begin her teaching career at Lone Tree School and then Dent Elementary School. After retiring from teaching, she and her husband traveled the United States in their RV.

She lived in Escalon for 73 years and was involved in the Girl Scouts and Escalon Methodist Church, especially the Sunday School Department. While at Lone Tree School she began supplying needy children with clothing as her interest and love for the more unfortunate child continued. She took time to visit families and discuss their problems and needs and then make arrangements for helping them. At Dent she started the "Clothes Closet" that continued on to the church. After retirement she made many trips to Columbia to bring clothes to Geraldine McConnell for the Indian Reservation.

She had a positive influence on her family, friends and students as she was a kind, giving and supportive person who will be dearly missed.

Survivors include her three loving daughters, Betty Oswald, Patsy Oswald and Judith Bournival and son-in-law John Bournival; grandchildren, Doug Smesrud, Lisa Johnson and Cinnamon Butler; three great grandchildren, Allisan, Paige and Rhys Johnson; brother, Martin Coburn; sister, Gladys Fox; and many nieces and nephews.

In addition to her husband, she was preceded in death by a son, Charles Ralph, in 1942.

Special thanks are given to her loving caregiver, Cherie Goss, and those caregivers at Bethel Assisted Living, English Oaks and Community Hospice who provided much comfort and all the kind family and friends who visited her.

Graveside services will be held at Burwood Cemetery on Thursday, Feb. 9 at 1 p.m.

A gathering to share memories will be held after the services at the Escalon United Methodist Church.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Escalon United Methodist Church, 2000 Jackson Ave., Escalon, CA 95320; or Community Hospice, 4368 Spyres Way Modesto, CA 95356.

Arrangements by Deegan Funeral Chapel; there is an online guest book available for you to share your memories; please visit our website at

The Escalon (Calif.) Times

Feb. 8, 2012