Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Rosemary Hewlett

After a short illness, Rosemary Kopmeier Bradford Hewlett died on Oct. 29, 2010, at her home in Atherton, Calif., surrounded by her family and loved ones. 

Rosemary was born March 18, 1919, in Milwaukee, Wis., to Norman and Loretta Miller Kopmeier. She attended Sacred Heart Boarding School, and entered Smith College at the age of 17 after her debut in Milwaukee in 1935. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English. While on a ski trip to Sun Valley, Idaho, Rosie met her future husband, Robert Adam Bradford of Boston, Mass., a graduate of the University of Virginia. They married in 1942 and lived in Milwaukee until they moved to Atherton, Calif., in 1957.

The Bradfords had four sons and a daughter. In addition to raising her family, Rosemary was actively involved in the Palo Alto Junior League, the Sacred Heart School in Atherton and Woodside Priory in Portola Valley. She was also an accomplished horsewoman, avid tennis and golf player and an experienced bridge player. The family spent many holidays in Sun Valley where they were all enthusiastic skiers. The Bradfords were happily married for 27 years until Bob sadly passed away from cancer in March of 1969.

Eight years after his death, Rosemary captured the heart of William R. Hewlett, and they married in 1978 in Palo Alto, Calif. Rosemary and Bill enjoyed a wonderful 22 years together, often travelling the world and dividing their time between Portola Valley, the Cedars and Sun Valley. They shared common interests in the outdoors, their large families and multiple charities. Bill ignited Rosemary's philanthropic interests and she became actively involved on the boards of Menlo College and the San Francisco Opera Company, and was one of the founding board members of the Peninsula Bridge Program, promoting academic and personal success for motivated middle school students from under-resourced local communities. This program in particular gave Rosemary much satisfaction and a great sense of pride. Rosemary was also a member of the order of the Dames of Malta and numerous other clubs and organizations.

Rosemary was truly a vibrant spirit that touched all who met her. She loved life and until very recently continued to travel the world and take holidays with family, close friends and her beloved caretaker for 17 years, Jose. Rosemary's stimulating conversation and exuberance for life will be forever remembered. She never hesitated to let you know how she felt and would often say, "I love you" or "Te quiero mas."

Rosemary is survived by her son, David Bradford, and his wife, Diane, of Tiburon, Calif.; sons Robert Bradford of Woodside, Calif., and Peter Bradford and his wife, Betty, of Portola Valley, Calif.; daughter, Deborah Bradford Whelan and her husband, Gabe Whelan, of Atherton, Calif. and son, Jeffrey Bradford and his wife, Casey, of Kauai and Sun Valley. Rosemary was much loved by her eight grandchildren, Michael and Melissa Bradford, Brigitte and Michelle Bradford, and Jennifer, Harry, Natalie and Abby Whelan, as well as many nieces and nephews and her dearly loved caretakers, Jose Pinto and Elda Chavez and their family.

A private family service and celebration will take place Nov. 6. Final burial will be at the Ketchum Cemetery in Ketchum, Idaho.

In lieu of flowers, donations of sympathy may be made to the Peninsula Bridge Program at 457 Kingsley Ave., Palo Alto, CA 94301 or

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