February 29, 1928 - November 6, 2021
Opal Mae Van Horn was born on February 29, 1928 in Elk City, Oklahoma. She entered into rest on November 6, 2021. She is survived by her son Ron and daughter in-law Karen, daughter Cindy, four grandchildren, seven great grandchildren, and four great great grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her sons Tim and Randy, and her husband of 72 years, Lynn Opal and her family were migrant farm workers. She was picking cotton at age 3, and was so proud that her momma made her a sack to go picking with her daddy. She didn’t like school, preferring the work of her family and the freedom she had in the outdoors. Although they didn’t have much, she always said her childhood was happy because the family was together. And the family she built was together until the very end. Opal came to California as a teen. She lied about her age to get a job at Hudlow’s Drive-In as a car hop. That’s where she met her husband, Lynn. The story she tells is that she spied him at the pinball machine and finagled him a job when the dishwasher didn’t show up one night. They soon married and worked together at Hudlow’s for nearly forty years. Opal and Lynn raised a family of four and were actively involved in the activities of their kids. Countless days and nights were spent at baseball and football games; concerts and competitions. Mom was a true benchwarmer. She watched little league and junior high sports with the same loud enthusiasm as the high school and college teams. Her presence was always known and there was nothing like having her there her cheer you on. After Hudlow’s closed, Opal worked for several years at Griswold’s Restaurant as a hostess, and then in an antique shop in Yucaipa. She was a very hard worker and loved being around the customers. In fact, for many years, she and Lynn were caregivers to two maiden ladies she met while at Griswold’s. Opal was a uniquely accomplished woman. She could drive a team of horses, carry dinner plates six at a time, sew a wedding dress, install sprinklers, build a bird aviary from scratch and build a family to last a lifetime. She had the most beautiful yard on the street, with beautiful flowers, featuring her massive rose collection. In her last months, she and Ron built a new garden that she could get to on the front porch. Her almost daily trips to Home Depot for new blooms was her favorite thing to do. Opal’s laugh was infectious. She brightened every room she came in. She had a warm hug and a welcome heart for loved ones and strangers alike. She loved shocking people just a little bit with her stories about things she did in her youth. In her words, she did “anything she was big enough to.” She had hundreds of little turns of the phrase that were funny like that. Opal loved a family vacation in Mexico, throwing a good party, and tackling a home improvement project. She was a devoted grandma to several pets in her later years - even though she pretended not to want them. This spring, she helped hand feed six kittens who were rejected by their mother. Her chihuahua, Baxter rode around in her lap and slept with her each night. The most important things without a doubt in Opal’s life were her kids, her extended family and friends, and her loving husband, Lynn. She was an wonderful example of strength, courage and devotion and is remembered with great admiration and love.
Opal Mae Van Horn was born on February 29, 1928 in Elk City, Oklahoma. She entered into rest on November 6, 2021. She is survived by her son Ron and daughter in-law Karen, daughter Cindy, four grandchildren, seven great grandchildren, and four... View Obituary & Service Information
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