Beverly “Bev” Ann Wheeler O’Donnell has come to live with us at Caring House. We are honored.
Bev was born in Los Angeles, the first of two children to Gertrude and Vincent Wheeler. She was reared in the Westwood area of Los Angeles.
Her grandparents lived in a small house adjacent to her parents. An endearing part of her childhood was spending long hours with her grandmother who taught her to knit. This started a lifelong love of knitting.
Bev attended St. Mary’s Academy / High School in Los Angeles. She then attended UCLA, majoring in education. She was a member of Delta Gamma Sorority. It was while at UCLA that a friend introduced her to her future husband, James Philip O’Donnell. She and Jim married in Los Angeles in 1954.
Bev and Jim had five children, Timothy, Mary Kathleen, Brian, Colleen, and Sharon. Bev is a proud grandmother to 13 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
Except for one year when Jim’s work took them to Missouri City, TX, Bev has lived in Southern California – Westwood, Van Nuys and most recently Rancho Palos Verdes.
For a few years prior to rearing their children, Bev taught grade school in Temple City and Culver City. Bev taught second grade at Holy Trinity Catholic School in San Pedro for many years. She later learned to transcribe from a Dictaphone and began working at a company that provided home health services. She eventually became an assistant to the administrator of that company.
After Jim retired, they enjoyed traveling – Europe, Canada, Japan to visit their daughter in Okinawa, and Australia visiting family there. She loved the many European jazz river cruises she shared with Jim and friends. Bev also has many other interests including reading, book club, movies and music, especially live performances of the LA Philharmonic at Disney Hall.
Volunteering has been a calling for Bev. She was a docent at the LA Phil. As part of a group she would go to elementary schools taking an instrument such as the violin to
introduce young students not just to the instrument but to the beauty of the music it could produce. Bev volunteered at the Palos Verdes Library in the gift shop and in the craft room.
Her talent for knitting and crocheting was especially useful in making baby blankets and caps for babies in need or to give to hospitals. Knitting was a bit of a passion for Bev, from a simple baby blanket to very intricate designs.
Her religion and her church, St. John Fisher, are a very big part of her life. Bev volunteered in the pray room once (and sometimes twice) a week at the church.
Bev is known in her family and by all who know her for her sweet disposition and her strong Catholic faith. Bev has always been there with kind, supportive words for her children. She is dearly loved by her family.
We are glad that Bev is with us at Caring House. We look forward to caring for this caring woman of service and faith.
Bev died on October 23, 2019. Honor her. Remember her.