Born: May 24th, 1931
Died: June 23, 2020
Rachel was a daughter, sister, aunt, wife, sister-in-law, mother, grandmother, and friend, and loved being and adding new roles and titles throughout her life for every new family member and friend she met. She was born in Freeport, Illinois, to Elmer and Esther Smith on May 24th, 1931, and as a young girl, moved to California when her father decided to pursue a new career and different lifestyle mining for gold from a cabin on a mining claim on French Hill, in Gasquet, California. They didn’t get rich, but Rachel loved her new home. After graduating from Del Norte High School, she moved to Arcata and attended Humboldt State, where she fell in love with and married John Tomini. They moved to Blue Lake and never left.
Rachel was beautiful, fun-loving, selfless, and dedicated to her faith. She lived a full life, watching the world move from radio broadcasts, to grainy pictures of men on the moon, to cellphones, and knew the true meaning of God: love equals God. Rachel loved traveling and exploring with her sister Ruth, and never lost her caring spirit. Rachel and Ruth spent many years trekking the country together, time spent together that was cherished more than gold.
Rachel spent the last two years of her life at Eureka Rehab and Wellness, where she met new friends, and presided over open card and board game hours for old ones. Thank you to all the staff for becoming her new family: she appreciated all the love and care you gave her.
She was preceded in death by her parents, husband John, nephew Danny, and grandson Tyler. Rachel is survived by her sister, Ruth King, and her children Joanne Parkhurst, Paul Tomini, David Tomini and Marty Tomini. She was the cherished grandmother of eight grandchildren: Darcy Collins, Cory Frazel, Chad Frazel, Maggie Parkhurst, Bobby Christian, Andrew Christian, and Tommy Christian. She is also survived by her great-grandchildren Parker, Emma, Preston, and Tyler. In honor of our lovely mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, and friend, any acts of random kindness in her spirit are greatly appreciated.
Arrangements are being made by Paul’s Chapel in Arcata.
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