Monday, 30 November 2020

Katherine Simpson

Katherine Simpson. Courtesy photo.

NORTHERN CALIFORNIA – Katherine Simpson, known to all of her friends as “Dollie,” passed away peacefully on Sept. 19, 2020, in San Francisco after experiencing a stroke the previous week, just short of her 92nd birthday.

She was born on Oct. 27, 1928, in Denison, Texas, to Sidney Green and Cecil Malone.

While her parents were attempting to make a living during the Great Depression, she and her sister Naomi were raised by her loving grandparents, Amos and Naomi Malone.

Living in Texas until she was 12, she developed a love of farming and animals, which she has carried throughout her life.

In 1940, her parents decided to start a new life together in San Francisco and moved the family to the Inner Sunset where she met her lifelong friends, Gloria and Margie, and was introduced to spending wonderful summers in Lake County with Margie’s family.

Attending Lowell High School for two years and eventually graduating from Presentation High School in 1946, she completed her education at Lone Mountain College and San Francisco State University as an English Major.

Marrying Robert Fitzpatrick in 1950, she worked as an executive assistant for Bigge Drayage Co. in Oakland, her experience eventually leading her to invest in small rental properties where she gained a vast knowledge of the construction and remodeling business.

In 1964, she married her much-loved Charlie Simpson (predeceased in 1996), a general contractor, and the two continued a career of remodeling and investing in small properties throughout San Francisco and Oakland.

In the mid 1970s, Lake County came calling, and Charlie and Dollie began a grape-growing adventure in Upper Lake.

Growing Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel and Sauvignon Blanc grapes became their new hobby, and every weekend was spent in Upper Lake working in the fields and maintaining their 30 acres, each year anticipating the excitement of a good grape harvest for Konocti Winery.

She and Charlie spent many years together enjoying their good friends, outdoor dinners with fresh garden tomatoes and zucchini squash, 4 o’clock cocktails, and cotillion club dances in Lake County, drinking lots of homemade wine along the way.

Always loving the peaceful environment of Lake County, Dollie lived between San Francisco and Upper Lake in her later years, watching her grapevines grow and enjoying her many cats in the Lake County summer sun.

Dollie was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s/dementia in 2009, and her final years were spent living at Coventry Place in San Francisco, where she was wonderfully looked after in comfort by thoughtful caregivers. Thank you also to Healthlink Hospice Care for making her final months very comfortable and peaceful.

She is survived by her loving daughter, Megan, and wonderful son-in-law, Michael; her caring nephews, Jim and Dan Mariner, along with their families Trisha, Cody, Jordan, Ashley, Nick and Lauren; and her big, old, friendly cat, Mr. Whiskers.

We will miss her very much.

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