Summary

Birth:
09 Mar 1928 1
Topeka, Shawnee, Kansas 1
Death:
08 Jun 2007 2
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Personal Details

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Full Name:
Billie Marie Bothwell 1
Full Name:
Billie M Blanco 2
Also known as:
Billie Marie Jones 1
Birth:
09 Mar 1928 1
Topeka, Shawnee, Kansas 1
Female 1
Birth:
09 Mar 1928 2
Death:
08 Jun 2007 2
Residence:
Last Residence: Chino Valley, AZ 2
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Birth:
Mother: Grace Burchit (possible adopted parents) 1
Mother: Pearl Bothwell 1
Father: Elmer E Jones (possible adopted parents) 1
Father: Robert Mevin Maze 1
Marriage:
Joseph Ramon Blanco 1
08 Sep 1950 1
Los Angeles County, California 1
Spouse Death Date: 13 Feb 1992, Canoga Park, Los Angeles County, California 1
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Social Security:
Card Issued: Unknown Code (PE) 2

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Stories

Billie Marie Bothwell-Jones-Blanco

We do not know if she was out of wedlock or not.  We have found out that her birth parents were Pearl Bothwell, Kansas and Robert Mevin Maze, Kansas.   This is stated on her birth certif.  on her death certif. it states Elmer Jones and Grace Burchit.  We do know that on the 1930 census we have her with the Jones family.  

 

We would love to know more, if anyone knows of this family Bothwell and Jones.

thank you

Her story by Billie

Billie Marie Bothwell (Jones) Short History (Edited from interview with Lorie Blanco in March of 2006) Billie Marie Bothwell was born March 9, 1928 at 6:05 AM in Shawnee county, Topeka township, Topeka city, Kansas. Her biological mother was Pearl Bothwell, and her biological father was Robert Maze. Pearl Bothwell lived at 115 Tyler in Topeka, Kansas. On the birth certificate of Billie, Pearl is listed as 20 years of age, white, birthplace Burlingame, Kansas, a house wife, and she was the mother of 3 children, all living. Robert was listed as 23 years of age, white, and an order clerk by profession. Robert lived at 201 Polk in Topeka, Kansas. Billie was given up by her biological parents at birth, and she was raised by Elmer E. Jones and Grace Jones (maiden name Burchit). Billie was never legally adopted by the Jones couple, but Billie took on the name of Jones as her maiden name her entire life. There is no known reason why Billie was given up at birth beside the fact that Pearl was not married to Robert, but was married to a Raymond Dell Peel at the time of Billie’s birth. Nor is there any known reason why Billie was not officially adopted by the Jones. The idea that Billie was given up at birth was an emotional issue with Billie, and brought sadness to her most of her adult life, though she loved the Jones family, especially Elmer, all of her life and considered them her parents. A 1930 Federal Census reports that Elmer, Grace, Billie, and a son named Leonard lived at 1107 N Jackson, Topeka, Kansas on April 8, 1930. On this census Billie is listed as “daughter” to Elmer and Grace, and she was listed as 1 ½ years of age. There is no known connection between Billie and the Jones family except for Billie being raised by them. Billie often stated that she thought her real father was Elmer, but pictures of Elmer show no likeness to Billie while pictures of Robert Maze do show a strong resemblance to Billie. Grace Jones died approximately in 1937, and Elmer remarried to Doris Metcalf. Billie stated that Doris was real possessive of Elmer, and because of this Billie moved and lived with her “Grandma Jones”, Etta May Jones (maiden name Sanders) from about 1937 until 1942. During this time she visited Elmer and Doris on a regular basis, but she did not live with them. Billie attended grade school in Kansas City. Billie remembers that she stayed after school one day to try out for a part in an Easter play to be given by her school. When she came home late that day she was punished by her Grandma Jones for being late. Billie never participated in any school activity after that. Billie states that her Grandma Jones was very involved in her church and attended meetings during the week and on Sundays, but Billie was confused with her Grandma Jones because when she returned from church she would cuss and use profanity, and would yell at Billie and say she would grow up and be “just like your mother”. In Billie’s later years she understands how hard it could have been to raise a younger child at an old age like her Grandma Jones, but at the time it hurt Billie to hear these things, and it always made Billie think in later years that there was a connection between the Jones family and the Bothwell family, besides Pearl giving birth to Billie. At the age of about 11 or 12 Billie moved and lived for a short time with her aunt, Bessie Dalrymple, on a farm in Silver Lake, Kansas, just outside of Topeka, Kansas. Billie remembers it being cold in the winters, and having to walk 1 ½ miles to the bus stop to go to school. Billie remembers coming home from school one day and finding that all of the children in the Dalrymple home had chickenpox and whooping cough. There were eight children in the family, and all got it. One day her Aunt Bessie asked her and her cousin Harold to kill a chicken for dinner. Harold told Billie to hold the head of the chicken while he chopped off its head. As soon as he cut off the chicken’s head, Billie let go and the chicken “wobbled all over the yard.” Billie said she couldn’t eat dinner that night, and couldn’t eat chicken for some time after that. To make matters worse, Billie went on a field trip at school shortly after this, and the class went to a meat packing house. For quite awhile after both of these incidents Billie could not eat meat and became a vegetarian for awhile. While on the farm, she did the usual chores like feeding the horses and milking the cows and washing clothes on a washboard. Sometime when she was 12 Billie moved back with her Grandma Jones, and they moved to Chicago, Illinois. She remembers the snow being to her waist. They lived across from McKinley Park, and she went to school at Moody Bible School. She remembers being a hall monitor at this school and she remembers one day telling a black girl to “get in line”. Well, the black student didn’t like being told what to do, so as Billie puts it, “she beat the **** out of me!” At about the age of 14, Leonard Jones, the son of Elmer and Grace and the person Billie called her brother, invited Billie to move out to California with him, his wife, and their baby girl Kay. Leonard said that Billie could help with the baby and could go to school out there. At the time Elmer and Doris lived in Kansas City. Billie jumped at the chance. Grandma Jones was at her church at the time Leonard invited Billie, and Billie wanted to get out of there as fast as she could so she didn’t even pack a pair of underwear. She wanted to be gone by the time Grandma Jones returned. Well, Grandma Jones returned before they could leave, and when Grandma Jones saw Billie in Leonard’s car she chewed her out again saying she was an ungrateful person and would grow up “just like your mother”. As an adult Billie had more sympathy for her Grandma Jones, but at the time she couldn’t get out of there fast enough. Billie drove out to California with Leonard and his family in a 1938 Buick Coupe. Billie sat in the back seat all the way holding baby Kay in a bassinet. Once they arrived in California Billie helped out with the household chores. Since this was during the time of World War II, Billie remembers the sacrifices the citizens of the United States had to make. Each person in the family got coupons for leather shoes. Billie didn’t use all of her coupons, so she gave them to others in Leonard’s family. This decision would have lasting effects on her for the rest of her life since she wore shoes that were the wrong size because she was growing at this time, and Billie’s feet always bothered her as an adult. They would save bacon grease and other oils to be used for cooking or to grease other items. They would receive stamps to get an allotment of meat. Tuesdays were called “Meatless Tuesday”. The only place you could get beef was at restaurants, unless you could get some on the black market. While attending junior high school it got to the point that in order for Billie to be able to eat, she had to work. So, she would go to school in the day time and work at night. Eventually, Elmer and Doris moved out to California to the town of Glendale where Billie lived. Billie then moved back into the home of Elmer and Doris. At this time Billie was 15 years of age and she went to Roosevelt High School in Glendale. At 15, Doris saw a newspaper add for a live-in babysitter position. The classified add said the person would take care of the couple’s child while the parents worked. This seemed like a great job for Billie, so Doris and Billie made contact with the couple, Ernie and Barbara Gallego. Their child was named Carol Ann, and this would become a life-long friendship between the Gallegos and Billie. Eventually, the babysitting job would be during the day and Billie got another job working at a restaurant right after school. Needless to say Billie’s school work suffered, and she left school in the 12th grade. In order to get to work at the restaurant, Billie had to learn how to drive a car. Leonard taught her how to drive a model A stick shift, and she drove this car often to work before she ever got a license. While still working at the restaurant, Billie moved out of the Gallego house and moved into an apartment with her best friend from the restaurant, Betty. Betty got a ride to work each day to the restaurant from a friend named Joe Blanco. He would pick her up at 4:30 AM in the morning when he was working his job as a route salesman for a bread company, and would drive her to work at the end of Glendale Boulevard, not the best place to be at 4:30 AM. That was the reason he picked her up, to protect her from possible danger or harassment. One morning Joe came to pick up Betty and Betty wasn’t ready yet. Billie was asleep on the couch and Betty introduced Billie to Joe. Billie didn’t seem too impressed and rolled over on the couch and went right back to sleep. One Sunday Joe came over to the apartment after being out all night on Saturday and wanted to take Billie out for breakfast. Billie told him no, that she needed to wash her hair and get ready for the next week. Billie didn’t want to have anything to do with Joe since he had been married before for about a year, and Billie didn’t ever want to be married to someone who was married before. Joe was persistent and Billie finally did agree to go out on a date with Joe, but on the day of the date Billie stood him up. Billie would walk to work during the day time and she would notice that Joe was following her to work in his truck. She would look away from the truck and look into store windows and see him following her. Finally, Joe would come into the restaurant and sit at the counter Billie worked. Now, she had to talk to him since she had to serve him. After awhile Joe finally talked Billie into going on a date again, and this time she kept the date. Once they went out Billie never went out with another guy. Billie said of Joe, “He became a habit that I couldn’t give up.” Billie became pregnant with Joe’s baby and they decided to get married. When asked if Billie ever thought of giving the baby up for adoption she stated she would never do to someone else what was done to her. Joe and Billie went to Las Vegas, Nevada and got married on 9 July 1950. About two months later they were informed that the person who married them was not licensed at the time to perform marriages, so they were remarried in Glendale, California on 8 September 1950 by Municipal Court Judge Kenneth A Whia. Though their first marriage was not legal, they always used and celebrated their 9 July marriage as their anniversary date. Their first child, Joseph Ramon Blanco, was born on 11 January 1951 in Los Angeles, California. He was born at 11:22 PM in the California Hospital in Los Angeles, and his vital statistics were 8 lbs 12 oz and 20 ½ inches long. Joe and Billie were living at 544 W. Broadway, Glendale, California at the time, and the doctor was Dr. Mueller, the family doctor of the Blanco family. After the birth Billie stated that giving birth was so easy she could have eleven more. That would change. At the time Joe was working for Sherman Donuts, and Billie was a stay-at-home mom. On 26 October 1953 Billie gave birth to her second child, Sharon Lee Blanco. She was 9 lbs 20 inches long, and was born at 8:56 PM. After that birth Billie stated, “That is it. No more children!” Obviously, this birth was substantially more painful than the first. In 1954 Joe and Billie purchased a house in Canoga Park, California using the GI Bill. It was a small three bedroom track house in a growing area of Southern California. The address was 7038 Cozycroft Ave, Canoga Park, California. At the time the streets were dirt, there were citrus and pumpkin groves throughout the community, and most of their neighbors were World War II veterans like Joe, who was in the Navy from 3 February 1943 until 5 February 1946. Eventually this area became known as the San Fernando Valley. Life was simple, concentrating on family life. Billie’s life was focused on her kids and being a homemaker. She became a great cook, in fact her recipes are well known not just in the Blanco Family, but in other families that have asked for her recipes to try and duplicate them, but never get there. Her recipes were notorious for such descriptions as “a pinch of …” or “a dash of…” Her children have continued on with these recipes and now her grandchildren are mastering them as well. Another interest Billie had during the early years of her marriage was being a member of bowling teams with Joe at the Canoga Park Bowl. They were members of several bowling teams usually comprised of other neighbors in the neighborhood. Billie was a big woman standing 5 foot 8 inches and weighing 180 pounds. She was very athletic and her bowling style was very strong and smooth. Her highest recorded game during the league was a 251, and her highest series, a total of three consecutive games in one night, was a 713. Needless to say, the Blanco home was littered with bowling trophies from Billie. Joe had his share too, but Billie was the trophy queen at the Blanco house. Joe and Billie were also very involved with their kids activities: YMCA, Little League, school sports, Demo Lay, Rainbow Girls, tap dance, etc. Many times Joe was the coach and Billie was the team Mom. The other interests of Joe and Billie were camping and fishing, dancing at neighborhood parties, and playing card games. If there was one interest that stayed with Billie her whole life it was playing games: card games, Yatzi, Monopoly, etc. The bad thing was that everyone got tired of playing with her because she always won. It was a common site to either have the ladies of the neighborhood over at the Blanco house during the day playing Canasta or Hearts, or having a poker game at night with the wives and husbands. Sometime around 1960 the household expenses became a little high and Billie decided to get a job. She took a course at a local junior college on medical dictation, and she got a job as a medical receptionist with a Doctor Mailman. This job lasted for over 8 years, and she not only worked the front desk, but she also helped with the patients in the back though she was not a nurse. She loved her job and it gave her confidence in herself that she did not have before. Billie quit her job so she could be home with her kids while they were going to high school. There were a lot of good times in the Blanco house, but there were challenges also. Joe developed a drinking problem which developed into Joe becoming an Alcoholic. Billie felt that she had to participate with Joe in his drinking, so she would also drink and get drunk, but only on the weekends. Billie never became an alcoholic, but she was addicted to cigarettes. It finally caught up to her in 1977 when she was diagnosed with stomach cancer. The doctor told her that only 15% of those who have this kind of cancer will survive. Billie was one of the fortunate 15%. She recovered so well that the medical center at UCLA wanted to study her in hopes of finding some silver bullet in fighting cancer. One negative aspect to this cancer episode was that Billie became dependent on pain medication. She dropped from about 200 pounds in weight to 98 pounds. At this time she seemed like she was always in a medicated stupor state, which greatly upset her family. In 1987 she either unknowingly overdosed on her drugs or had some kind of medical reaction to the drugs she was taking, and she went into a coma. This lasted 3 days, and the medical personnel did not know if she was going to come out of this condition. Through prayers of family and friends she did come out of the coma, and the first thing Billie’s family did was to get another doctor for her who immediately took her off of the pain medication she was on. This didn’t make Billie happy, but was necessary because she was addicted to them, which later in her life she admitted, but at this time in her life she was not a happy camper. But, she did value the feelings of her family and went along with their plan. Within a short period of time Billie’s health, demeanor, and outlook on life changed substantially. She gained about 40 pounds, which brought her to about 130 pounds, which she maintained for the rest of her life. Even though she had a history with cancer, she still smoked and said she would never stop smoking because she loved it too much. The drugs she gave up, but the cigarettes stayed. During this time Sharon had married Derek A. Davidson in 1974, divorced Derek in 1977, Joe junior married Lorie Jeanette Stine in 1978, and Sharon remarried to Sam Gaines in 1980. Joe junior joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in 1980, and between the years 1982 through 1992 Billie became a grandma of 7 grandchildren: two from Sharon (Samantha and Greg) and five from Joe junior (Clinton, Darren, Taylor, Briana, and Dylan). Sharon lived in California and Joe junior moved to Arizona in 1987. During the time that Sharon and Joe junior started having children Sharon and Joe junior had a separate serious conversation with Joe and Billie about their concerns with Joe’s drinking and Billie’s drug use. Sharon and Joe junior told their parents that they loved them, but they could not trust them to watch over their children, and their grandchildren would not be able to come and see Grandpa and Grandma on their own. This really tore up Joe and Billie because being grandparents was all they thought of at this time in their lives. This caused Joe to evaluate his life, and he put himself into a recovery program and joined Alcoholics Anonymous. As Joe would later say, “This saved my life” Joe and Billie became very involved in AA, organizing activities and holding leadership offices, even though Billie was not a member of AA. Joe became a speaker for AA, and would visit prisons to work with the inmates to try and help them when they would be released. Needless to say, Joe and Billie were welcome grandparents in both Sharon’s and Joe junior’s homes. On 13 Feb 1992 Joe died from lung cancer. He died at his home at 7038 Cozycroft Ave in Canoga Park. Billie and Sharon were there when he died. Joe was buried at the Oakwood Memorial Park in Chatsworth California on 18 Feb 1992, and his funeral services were conducted by Joe junior. The family was amazed at how many people attended Joe’s funeral. The family had contracted to have 1 motor patrolman for the funeral precession, but the funeral company had to call in 3 more patrolmen because of the long line of cars that went to the cemetery. After Joe’s death Billie lived in her home in Canoga Park until about 1995, when she sold her home. For about one year she lived with Sharon and her family in Quartz Hill, California. Then she moved into Joe junior’s home in 1996. With Joe junior having 5 kids and owning a 3 bedroom house, Joe junior’s home was getting pretty crowded. Billie shared a bedroom with her granddaughter Briana. Joe and his wife Lorie bought some property in Chino Valley, Arizona and they built two homes on this property: one for them and their 5 kids, and a one-bedroom mother-in-law house for Billie so she could have her own house with her own kitchen. They moved into these homes during the Thanksgiving holiday of 1996. In August of 1996 Sharon and her family moved to Arizona to be with Billie and Joe junior. From 1996 to 2007 Billie saw her grandchildren Samantha and Darren get married, and she was blessed to see one great-grandchild born: Aryanna to Samantha. As of the writing of this history, Billie now has 4 great-grandchildren with one on the way. In 2003 Billie was baptized a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints by her grandson Clinton Thomas Blanco, who had just returned from serving a mission in Taiwan. Billie received her temple endowments in 2004 at the Mesa Temple in Arizona, and she was sealed to her husband Joe at that time. On 8 June 2007 Billie died of liver cancer. Her funeral service was held in Chino Valley, Arizona and was conducted by her son Joseph Ramon Blanco, who was currently serving as the Bishop of the Paulden Arizona Ward which Billie was a member of. Billie was buried next to her husband at the Oakwood Memorial Park Cemetery in Chatsworth, California. She was survived by her son Joe, her daughter Sharon, her daughter-in-law Lorie, her son-in-law Sam, grandsons Clinton, Darren, Taylor, Dylan, and Greg, granddaughters Briana and Samantha, great-daughter-in-law Shaundra, great-son-in-law Andres, and great-granddaughter Aryanna. Billie’s love of life was her family, and her family will always cherish the great love they have for her throughout eternity. (Edited from interview with Lorie Blanco in March of 2006)

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