Thousand Oaks, CA
Norma Lou Oteham Rich, 79, died Saturday, April 27, 2019 at her home in Thousand Oaks. She was born in Lafayette, Indiana on April 30, 1939 to Frank Francis and Bernice Oteham and was raised on a farm near Attica, Indiana.
Norma attended a small elementary school in Davis Township and graduated with 4 other students. She graduated from Attica High School with the class of 1957.
While in grade and high school Norma was active in 4-H, raising prize Angus cattle which she showed on the open show circuit in and around Indiana. She was also involved in homemaking projects with 4-H.
Through her 4-H achievements, her dream was to attend Purdue University. She did so and graduated with a B.S. in home economics education in 1961. While at Purdue, she met the man of her dreams, veterinary student Bob Rich, while helping perform a caesarian on a cow.
After graduation from Purdue, Norma taught home economics, physical education, and biology in a small rural school in Newtown, Indiana. Norma and Bob Rich were married September 22, 1963. They spent the two years of their married life in Waco, Texas while Bob fulfilled his service requirement. From there they moved to Thousand Oaks in 1965, where bob went into a veterinary practice. In 1966 a son, Jeffrey Lynn Rich was born, followed by Douglas Alan Rich in 1969.
Norma was active in helping her husband start is own veterinary practice in Newbury Park in 1968 working as a receptionist. She was heavily involved in her sons' school and sporting activities while they were growing up, serving as team mother, president of the Redwood PFA, and president of the Newbury Park High School Scholarship Committee. Norma was a 4-H leader in both beef and sheep projects while her sons were in 4-H.
In 1982, she started her own business, Norma Rich Interiors, where she did design work for both commercial and residential clients for 35 years.
After retirement, she enjoyed traveling, being a grandmother to her two grandchildren, and driving her antique International Cub farm tractor in parades. She was one of the first lady members of the Topa Topa Flywheelers, an antique farm tractor and engine club and was a charter member of St. Matthews United Methodist Church in Newbury Park.
Funeral services will be held at 2:00 p.m. Saturday May 4 at St. Matthew's United Methodist Church, 1360 S. Wendy Dr., Newbury Park. Interment will follow at Valley Oaks Memorial Park, Westlake Village.
Norma asked that in lieu of flowers, donations in her name be made to the Ventura County 4-H Clubs or to your favorite high school scholarship fund.
To send flowers to Norma's family, please visit our floral section.