Her name was Josephine Moore and she was 98 years old.
Josephine was only six when her family moved to Los Angeles,CA from Mississippi. When she was 16 she was "discovered" and she became a starlet and model. She worked in a few movies as Verna Clair, including ones with Robert Young and Margaret Sullivan. Her image was plastered on more than a few billboards. Her biggest claim to fame was as the "running girl" on a 30's Coca-Cola tray.
Josephine married her handsome husband Prentiss Moore in 1934 and put her career behind her as she raised two sons. Prentiss became a Los Angeles Judge in 1966.
Josephine and her husband moved to their 360 acre ranch out Bedford Street in Placerville in 1976. I met Judge Moore and Josephine in the 1980's when I worked at Superior Court on Main Street. Part of my job was procuring "out-of-county" judges to sit on cases which could not be tried by our three Superior Court judges. We also called them visiting judges. Judge Moore was available most of the time, and he didn't have far to travel!
We Court employees got to know the Judge and Josephine fairly well and went to visit and see their lovely old ranch house, which was filled with very interesting old movie photos and other fascinating things, and also the beautiful quarter horses they raised. I never did get to peek into any of the many gold mines which litter the property.
After the Judge passed away in 1989, I remember Josephine best as the proprietor of a great Christmas tree farm. She had met my husband at the plumbing supply company he works at, and we shopped at her farm several times for our 8 to 10 foot Christmas trees (we had a high ceiling in those days!).
Heidi and I met her son Arnie in the summer of 2010 at a Shakespeare picnic in Apple Hill when he accompanied Josephine as her date. We sat at the same table and had several lively conversations.
The photo above is from Arnie's facebook page, and it is the 2009 wedding of his son Cosmo. Josephine in the gray, with her two sons beside her. Arnie is on the far left.
Josephine was the 1999 El Dorado Rose, and I have always considered her the most beautiful Rose we ever had. She was a wonderful treasure, always smiling, and we will miss her.