Reimers raised race horses, rescued dogs & boosted ‘Tigers’

Woodlake residents, of both the two-legged and four-legged variety, mourned the loss of a woman who tirelessly supported the cubs of her community last week.

Ann Burke Reimers, local orange grower and philanthropist, passed away on July 27 at the age of 92 having lived a long and wonderful life. A Rosary and Mass were held last week at St. Francis Cabrini Catholic Church of Woodlakeh. Burial will be private.

She was born in Visalia on Sept. 5, 1919. Ann graduated from a local high school then attended the University of California for three years and graduated from Smith College in 1941. She was a member of Phi Beta Kappa and an avid lover of the bounty of nature. Her Woodlake home is nestled among the oaks along the banks of the St. Johns River.

It was a the perfect seeting to raise thoroughbred race horses, including her most successful horse Beau St. John. She was an expert equestrian and owned and showed Quarter Horses throughout her life. One of her favorite horses was Kaweah King or better known as “Bucky”. Among his many championships, he was Hackamore Champion at the prestigious Del Mar Horseshow.

Ann’s house and heart were a refuge for unwanted dogs and cats. With Ann at the wheel driving her white pickup truck through town, there were always multiple canine passengers enjoying the ride.

She gave new meaning to the words “Tiger Boosters.” Whether flipping burgers at the high school football games or working at the Tuesday Bingo fundraisers, this selfless woman was always ready to serve. She supported the Woodlake Food Pantry, Boys and Girls Club, YMCA, California Agriculture Leadership, Cat Haven, local SPCA, dog rescue and numerous other charities.

Ann was a devout Catholic and attended mass daily. The church was only one of Ann’s favorite charities.

Auntie Ann was preceded in death by her loving husband, Don Reimers in 1975. Married in January 1942, Don carried her over the threshold of their first home on a ranch outside of Lemon Cove. This wonderful Victorian home held many special memories of their years together. They moved to Woodlake in 1970. She was also preceded in death by her cousin, Franklin Otis Booth Jr. Ann and Otis each inherited a 40 acre parcel, which Don Reimers planted in oranges in 1950, thus sparking Otis’s interest in the orange industry which today is Booth Ranches.

She will be missed by many, including her niece, Loren Booth and Loren’s son, Jake Sill, his wife, Chiara and her daughter Blair and her husband, James (Bubba) Moffett. Ann’s other nieces include Jenny Booth, Stephanie Murray, and nephew, Spike Booth. The Chavez family, Rogelio and his wife, Rose Elena and their children Veronica, Brenda, Joel, Abel, Andrew, Andrea, and Rogelio Jr. have always been there to brighten her days in many ways. Her caregiver and special friend with a contagious smile and positive spirit, Mona Lynn Letson has given her so much in these last few years. Also a thank you to the staff at Booth Ranches for all of their help and support, a special thank you to Brenda Sanchez and Paul Adams for everything they have done.

This remarkable, independent, generous woman will be missed.

In lieu of flowers, please donate in Ann’s memory to one of her favorite charities. Please call Brenda at Booth Ranches for more information.

Condolences may be offered at

Arrangements are entrusted to Miller Memorial Chapel, 1120 W. Goshen Ave., Visalia, CA 93291.

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