By Kelsey Hoppe Mobers
HOW WE GOT HERE
My great-great-grandparents Richard E. Dewire and Jennie S. Dewire came to Long Beach from Cincinnati, Ohio, on October 10, 1910, with their 4 children, including my great-grandfather William Alan Dewire, age 8. My great grandparents Frederick A. Watkins and Garlin (Lemmon) Watkins were born in Nebraska and Oregon respectively, but moved to Long Beach before the birth of their first child in 1923.
WHO’S STILL HERE
My grandparents Frederick S. Watkins and Frances Dewire Watkins both graduated from Wilson High School and were married at Bay Shore Community Congregational Church in 1948. My mom, Connie Watkins Hoppe, and I both attended all LBUSD schools and are graduates of Lakewood High School. There are 11 Dewire-Watkins family members living in Long Beach, including my 3 daughters, who are 6th generation Long Beach residents.
My grandmother, Frances Dewire Watkins, began volunteering at Rancho Los Cerritos around 1990, and was heavily involved there, including portraying Mrs. Margaret Bixby in a live history one-woman show called “Tea with Margaret Bixby.’’ She even recruited me to volunteer as a child and young teen, portraying various members of the Bixby family during their Candlelight Holiday Tours. My husband, Patrick Mobers, and I chose Rancho Los Cerritos as our wedding venue to honor our Long Beach roots, and were honored to have grandma Fran in attendance.