Obituary: Beverly Jean Smith Gosnell

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Beverly Gosnell

Beverly Jean Smith Gosnell, 88, died in her Serra Retreat home on Dec. 19.

Beverly was born in rural San Diego on Nov. 14, 1926. During the lean depression years, the family moved several times before returning to San Diego where her mother, Edith, raised her and her brother, George, on a small chicken ranch.

Beverly often told stories of bike rides to Coronado Beach and Point Loma to enjoy sun and surf. During the war years, she worked with volunteer organizations assisting the sailors that were passing through the naval base.

Beverly attended San Diego State University and was an active member of the Gamma Phi Beta sorority. At the wedding of sorority sister Carolyn Gosnell, Beverly met future husband Raymond Alwood Gosnell Jr., who had returned from Beirut, Lebanon, for his sister’s wedding. After marrying, the newlyweds moved to Los Angeles, where Raymond pursued a career in the emerging field of broadcast television, while Beverly taught at several local schools, including Marlborough School for Girls in Hancock Park.

After retiring from teaching to raise children, Beverly stayed active in education, serving on many PTA boards, and also in the Gamma Phi Beta organization, serving several years on both the UCLA and the national Panhellenic boards.

Beverly and Raymond moved to Malibu in 1978, settling in the wooded Serra Retreat neighborhood. She became active in the community, working for the Malibu Surfside News, where she authored articles about history and noteworthy residents of Malibu. She also became active in the Malibu Historical Society and worked with the Malibu Adamson House Foundation to have the home declared a historical landmark by the State of California. Beverly was a docent and volunteer at the Adamson House for 29 years, giving her final tour in September. She was honored with Emeritus status in a garden ceremony.

Beverly is preceded in death by her husband of 54 years, Raymond Gosnell. She is survived by daughter Cheryl Schwartz of Las Vegas; son Raja Gosnell of Malibu; and grandchildren Bryan, Caroline, Emily, Bradley, Cayley and Audrey.

Memorial services will be announced shortly. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to the Malibu Adamson House Foundation in her name.