Esther Louise Romisch (Etherton) died peacefully in her home on August 30, 2018 in Willits, at the age of 94.

Esther is survived by her three daughters and their husbands; Juanita, Lillian & Keith Levitt, and Della & Bob Bennett. Esther is survived by nine grandchildren, eighteen great-grandchildren, and thirty seven great-great-grandchild. She is preceded in death by her husband, William Fredrick Romisch, and her sister, Betty Jean Oerter.

Esther was born on Thanksgiving Day, November 26, 1923 in Topeka, Kansas to Sarah Bernice Mitchell and Tillman Foster Etherton. She was delivered by her grandma Mitchell and weighed in at 9 lbs. At the age of 16, she started working on a wheat ranch cooking for a harvest crew of seven men, in Eastern Oregon. One week later she met Bill Romisch. They enjoyed a two month romance leading to a marriage on August 28, 1939 which lasted 56 years. While Esther was busy raising three daughters and working a variety of jobs, Bill drove long haul trucks. During their years together they lived in Oregon and Alaska, finally settling in Fortuna. Following retirement, Bill and Esther were able to take road trips visiting all the states of the USA.

Esther worked for the San Juan Fish Packing Company in Oregon and Inglewood Plywood in California. She spent three years as the president of the V.F.W. in Fortuna and was honored as a life member. Esther loved nature, enjoyed reading, travel, and world history. She loved being a mother and was passionate about spending time with family. Esther was an accomplished quilter, making hundreds of beautifully crafted quilts for family and several children’s organizations including Foster Youth Outfitters. She attended Redwood Valley Community Church.

A graveside service is scheduled for Saturday, September 8, 2 p.m. at Sunrise Cemetery, 3315 Newburg Road, Fortuna. Reception to follow at Las Cazuelas Restaurant, 435 N Fortuna Blvd, Fortuna. A memorial service is scheduled for Sunday, September 16, 1:00 p.m. at Baechtel Creek Village Club House, 61 Alder Court, Willits. All are welcome to attend either service to honor Esther’s life. In lieu of flowers, please make donations in Esther’s name to: Foster Youth Outfitters at or to Phoenix Hospice, 100 San Hedrin Circle, Willits, CA 95490. The family would like to thank Hospice and her long term caregiver and friend for their dedicated love and care.


The obituary above was submitted on behalf of Esther Romisch’s family. The Lost Coast Outpost runs obituaries of Humboldt County residents at no charge. See guidelines here.