Virginia “Vinnie” Marion Rasch passed away in Orange, Calif., on Jan. 21, 2021. Vinnie was born on Oct. 29, 1941, at 9 p.m. in Los Angeles, Calif., joining her 10-month-old brother.
She was born prematurely and did not leave the hospital until after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, when she immediately traveled to Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada, to spend her early years with her mother, brother, and maternal grandparents while her father was off at war.
After the war, she returned with her family to Los Angeles, where she participated enthusiastically in the Girl Scouts, and graduated from Los Angeles City High School and Long Beach State College. She moved to rural Ojai, Calif., in the 1960s. For over three decades, she taught at elementary schools in the Ojai Valley, including for many years at Mira Monte.
On almost every trip into downtown Ojai, Vinnie would run into former students, always stopping to chat. She took special delight in teaching the children of her students, and in a few cases the grandchildren of former students. Many of her favorite stories included these parents complaining to her about their children's behavior.
“Miss Rasch, Jimmy isn’t doing his homework,” and with narrowed eyes she’d reply “neither did you.”
In addition to her love for dogs, Vinnie had a lifelong passion for horses. She loved riding and competing in regional shows. Her interest in horses started in the late 1970s with her first horse Wendy, and grew through the decades. She was particularly fond of CJ (Cherries Jubilee) and her baby Jube (Don’s Jubilation).
A few years after she retired from teaching, Vinnie moved to Bear Valley Springs, Calif., a place that reminded her of Ojai “back in the day.” She enjoyed her friends, horses, and dogs during her Bear Valley years. For the last couple of years, she lived at an assisted living facility in Orange, Calif. Her death came somewhat suddenly, a week after testing positive for COVID.
Vinnie was kind, direct, and uncompromising, and had a love of life, friends and animals. She was a great listener with a knack for no-nonsense advice, and an ability to put issues in perspective, often with her familiar phrase: “not today’s problem.” Vinnie was dearly loved and will be greatly missed.
She is survived by her brother, Phil; her sister-in-law, Karen; and her nieces and nephews, Douglas, Barbara, William and Mary.
No services are planned at this time.