Obituary: Elizabeth Nicholes

Loving wife, mother and friend

Elizabeth Nicholes, a 24-year Claremont resident, died of heart failure Thursday, July 7, 2016 at Casa Colina Hospital in Pomona. She was 59.

She was born in Los Angeles in January of 1957 to Evangelina (DeLuna) and Victor Robles. The fourth child in the Robles family, “Betty” grew up in East Los Angeles and attended local grade schools and eventually Garfield High School. Later she attended high school in Eagle Pass, Texas when the family relocated there.

After high school, she moved back to Los Angeles and supported herself with various waitressing and hotel service jobs while attending junior college. After many years of juggling study with full-time employment, she graduated with an Associate of Arts from Citrus College in 1992. Betty met her future husband, Bruce Nicholes, about the time of her graduation. They were married on November 21, 1992. Prior to this, she served as a missionary in the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Mission of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

The couple, along with their oldest son Michael, moved to Claremont in 1992 and had two more children, Scott in 1993 and Katherine in 1994. Mrs. Nicholes was active in the community and volunteered at Oakmont and Chaparral as well as at El Roble and Claremont High School.

Mrs. Nicholes was a devoted gardener and “plant whisperer.” She had a small jungle of various plants, trees and flowers with which she developed a loving relationship. Frequently she would inform the family of where a particular plant wanted to move, how it was feeling or what it needed. Her other hobby was paper-cutting arts. She made many creative, personalized cards for her own use and for others. Her collection of paper-cutting dies and machines is truly comprehensive.

Mrs. Nicholes had a wide community of friends throughout the area. The warmth of neighbors and the strength of friendships formed here were so satisfying that, even with long commutes to Orange County, the thought of moving could not be seriously entertained.

“If the joys of friendship and the love of others are the true riches of life, Betty was fabulously wealthy,” family shared. 

She is sincerely missed by those who played an important role in her life. She is survived by her husband of 24 years, Bruce, by her sons Michael and Scott and her daughter Katie and by her sisters Rosalind Jue and Irma Kump. She was preceded in death by her father Victor, her mother Evangelina and her brother Victor Manuel.

A gathering to celebrate Betty’s life will take place Saturday, July 30 at 10 a.m. at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 728 E. Baseline Road in Claremont. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Animals Asia to help save the moon bears.

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