Chloe Campbell Reutzel

Chloe Cahalan Campbell was born on Aug. 24, 1922 in Aberdeen, South Dakota, the daughter of Katherine Cahalan Campbell and Roger Albert Campbell. Her father was an attorney, her mother an English teacher. Her grandfather served on the Territorial Commission when South Dakota became a state.

Chloe was graduated from Central High School in Aberdeen in 1940, and then attended Northwestern University where she majored in chemistry and was president of her sorority, Kappa Alpha Theta. After graduation she was employed as a research chemist at Abbott Laboratories in Chicago.

At one point, her work involved gray hair prevention, and she recalled that while it was possible to prevent graying, the lab results indicated such large quantities of liver would have to be ingested as to leave people preferring to remain gray-haired.

Chloe met her husband-to-be, Emil W. Reutzel, Jr. when he was among a number of University of Nebraska students who had joined the Marine Corps Reserve and were sent to Northwestern’s Evanston, Illinois, campus for training. The two were married in November 1944, when then-Ensign Reutzel was attending a Naval Intelligence school in New York City. The marriage took place at the home of Dr. and Mrs. John Work of Montclair, New Jersey. Mrs. Work was Chloe’s cousin.

The newlyweds lived in New York City briefly and in San Diego before Emil left for duty in the Pacific. Chloe returned to her native Aberdeen and taught school until her husband returned from his World War II overseas service. The two purchased a weekly newspaper in her husband’s hometown of Neligh, Nebraska, when he was discharged from the Navy, but delayed their return long enough for him to obtain a degree from Northwestern and its Medill School of Journalism in 1946. It was during their time in Neligh that their two daughters were born.

Chloe was happy to stay home and raise her girls and be a homemaker. She followed Emil to Washington, D.C. for seven years where he was an an assistant to the director of the Office of Civil and Defense Mobilization in the Executive Office of the President. They left the Capital City shortly after the change of administration in 1961, returning to Norfolk, Nebraska, where Chloe’s husband became editor of the Daily News and was also involved in the ownership of several weekly newspapers.

Chloe and Emil made it a point to do the traveling they loved while in their middle years. Vacations took them to the Arctic and Antarctic, South America, Europe, the Mediterranean, Far East and all 50 states. They felt blessed to have their roots in the Plains and the enjoinment of the near-perfect climate of Southern California.

When Emil retired, they returned to Coronado and lived there for 25+ years. Chloe was always active in the community as a volunteer. She loved playing bridge, thoroughly enjoyed her investment club and was active in her church, Graham Memorial Presbyterian Church. One of her favorite activities there was writing letters to shut ins.

She is survived by her loving husband Emil; her loving daughters, Romney (William) Olson of Lincoln, Nebraska and Sarah Travis (Michael) Lee of Laguna Hills, California; grandsons Quinn Olson, Scott Olson, Cameron Lee and McAllister Lee; seven great-grandchildren; and her brother, Gordon (Jeanne) Campbell of Aberdeen, South Dakota. She is also survived by her devoted caregiver, Angela Mora, who greatly contributed to her quality of life during her last years.

Known for her infectious laugh, more than once it was said, “Oh, Chloe is here!” when someone entered a room and heard her distinct giggle. She is missed.

Private graveside services will be held at a later date.

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