Obituary: Anita Morris Shields |

Obituary: Anita Morris Shields

1/19/16 – 9/30/13

Anita Morris Shields was born at home during the great blizzard of 1916 on Queen Anne Hill in Seattle, Washington. She was the middle child of the five children of Erma and Ernest (Ed) Morris. Her siblings were Ed, Leonta, Robert, and Bernice. While the Morris family lived in many places on the West Coast, her high school years were spent in Calistoga, California. She attended Calistoga Joint Union High School, and was THE cheerleader for the boys basketball team (They didn’t have enough boys for a football team.) Upon graduation in 1933 she attended the University of California, Berkeley. She joined Casa Hispana Sorority with her sister Leonta and learned to speak Spanish. Anita dreamed of traveling the world and so took a class in international business. There she met Charlie Shields, a graduate of the California Maritime Academy, who was studying business. Her brother Ed had known Charlie at the Academy and set them up. They fell in love and in 1940 were married in San Francisco. They settled in Oakland, California and raised three children: Andy, Peter, and Hana. Together, Charlie and Anita had many adventures. They lived in Japan after World War II and traveled extensively in Europe, Africa, and Asia. They also took many trips by car across the United States, including a camping trip to Alaska.

Charlie and Anita also loved the mountains. In 1963 they purchased 10 acres in Christmas Valley near Lake Tahoe. When snowmobiles were invented (and they knew they could access the property) they built a house in 1968. Every weekend after was spent driving from Oakland to Tahoe to work on the house. In 1974 they retired and moved to Tahoe. They said that this was the best time of their lives. They were very active in the community joining such organizations as the Retired Officers Association, the Lake Tahoe Historical Society, Cal Bears in the Woods, and they worked on the Tahoe Rim Trail. Anita also joined the South Lake Tahoe Republican Women and was a volunteer at Barton Hospital. She loved participating in the Living History Festival at Valhalla. Charlie passed away in 1988, but Anita continued to live in Tahoe on her own until she was 87. She loved golf, hiking, cross country skiing, Cal football, and white wine. She was known for her exploits chasing bears and coyotes from the property. She was passionate about her family and treasured her grandchildren Rosie, Grant, Naomi, Chad, Juliette, Chloe and Isobel, and her great grandchildren Allison, James and Henry. Her grandchildren called her their Mountain Grandma.

Anita passed away at the age of 97 on the 25th anniversary of Charlie’s death. As in birth, she died during a storm. We like to think Charlie rode in on the wind and swept her off on their next adventure. The world is a lesser place without her. She shall be sorely missed.

Graveside Service at Happy Homestead Cemetery on October 7, 2013 at 11:00am

Celebration of Life to be held on October 6, 2013 at her home at 2:00pm.

Please email for directions.

Friends May Visit: October 6, 2013 2:00 pm

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