Surrounded by her family, Billie Loraine Welch Fortlage died peacefully in her Petaluma home on Nov. 9. All who knew Billie will testify to the fact that she was a remarkable Christian woman whose love for God was evident as soon as you met her.
She was born Aug. 8, 1921, in San Francisco. She grew up enjoying the East Bay, attending Anna Head girls school in Oakland. Billie told of taking the ferry with her sisters across the Bay to San Francisco, and remembered the Golden Gate Bridge being built, often celebrating her birthday by walking the famous span. After graduating from the University of California, Berkeley, she taught school in the Bay Area for 26 years. She and her husband, Arndt, enjoyed traveling and visited family and friends on almost every continent.
She was preceded in death by her sister, Lois George; and her husband, Arndt Charles Fortlage.
She is survived by her sister, Caroline Grimditch of Boca Raton, Fla.; daughters, Darcie Newton of San Antonio, Texas, Beth DuVardo of Petaluma, Calif. and Teri Kinnier of Turlock; and son, Scott Fortlage of Montara, Calif. She and Arndt were devoted grandparents of 14 and great grandparents to seven.
A memorial service will be held at 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 4 at First Presbyterian Church of Petaluma, 939 B St., Petaluma.