Evelyn Ann Retamal, 85, passed away peacefully on the morning of April 6, 2020 surrounded by loved ones. She will forever be remembered as a beloved matriarch with a gravity that drew many into her loving orbit and as a woman of incredible depth and goodness.
After passing the California Bar in 1978, Evelyn and her husband Sergio opened their Indio law practice Retamal & Retamal, Attorneys at Law. She was a respected family law attorney known for her keen sense of justice and deep concern for her clients.
An Idyllwild resident for nearly 20 years, Evelyn represented many local residents in addition to her desert clientele. Evelyn loved practicing law and in her later years enjoyed sitting as a judge pro tempore.
Evelyn retired from law in 1996 and returned to her long-time home in Sherman Oaks, California. During this time, Evelyn worked as an assistant children’s librarian at a small private school, combining her great love of children and literature. Evelyn enjoyed being a librarian and quickly became a treasured member of her new community, beloved by co-workers, parents and students alike.
She retired in 2005 after being diagnosed with cancer and spent her remaining years doing all the things that she loved most: traveling, crafting, watercoloring, reading in her garden and spending time with loved ones.
Throughout her life, Evelyn was a dedicated advocate for the rights of women and the mentally ill. She was heavily involved in the Los Angeles Chapter of the National Organization for Women and the Coachella Valley Chapter of the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill. She also wrote short stories, nonfiction, and poetry, a number of which appeared in juvenile and feminist publications.
Evelyn was predeceased by her husbands Robert Bruce Anderson and Sergio Aranis Retamal, daughter Evelyn Anderson Escobedo, sister Joan and husband Warren Rohn, and brother Frederick John and wife Joyce Ruopp.
She is survived by her brother John and wife Barbara Ruopp of Bishop, California, surviving children Bruce and wife Sonia Anderson of Granada Hills, Marie Striegler of Culver City, Ben Retamal of Palm Springs, Anne Retamal and husband Edward Knell of Altadena, grandchildren Sean Striegler, Josh Striegler, Milo Knell, Alice Knell, and many beloved nieces and nephews and their families.
A private ceremony will take place at San Fernando Mission Catholic Cemetery. A larger public celebration of life will take place when it is safe to do so.
In lieu of flowers, the family welcomes donations to the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation, the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill or the National Organization for Women.