header image

[Sign Up Now] to Receive Our FREE Daily SCVTV-SCVNews Digest by E-Mail

Inside
Weather


 
Calendar
Today in
S.C.V. History
February 26
1923 - U.S. release of Charles Chaplin film "The Pilgrim," partially shot at Saugus Train Station & Newhall First Presbyterian Church [watch]
The Pilgrim


Bobbie Trueblood Davis at an SCV Boys & Girls Club Auction at CalArts

Before there was a city of Santa Clarita, there was Bobbie Trueblood Davis.

She was a force unto her own.

With her family by her side, “Bobbie” died Saturday, December 16, 2017, at home in Morro Bay, where she retired with her late husband – former LAPD chief and state Sen. Ed Davis – after more than half a century as an influential participant in the social and political fabric of the Santa Clarita Valley. She was 93.

It was an uncharacteristically quiet end to a transformative epoch in Santa Clarita Valley history.

“Mrs. Republican,” as she was known here, actually hailed from the south coast of England where she was born Oct. 30, 1924, as Aileen Nash. She never used her real first name. According to a 1996 biography by her good friend from the other side of the political aisle, the late Ruth Newhall, Bobbie’s father expected a boy and went to the hospital looking for his “little Bobby.” It stuck.

Bobbie was a war bride. In England she met a U.S. soldier named Fred Trueblood Jr., son of the owner-editor of the Newhall Signal and Saugus Enterprise, a little weekly paper in a little town north of Los Angeles that had no stoplights but quite a number of oil workers and bomb makers.

Truebloods were Democrats back then, but that fact didn’t stop Bobbie from registering as a Republican as soon as her citizenship came through. Her family back home was with Winston Churchill’s Conservative Party, and she’d never dream of going “Labour,” as Newhall notes.

Her beau’s parents lived on a section of William S. Hart’s ranch in Newhall. (Today, the “Frew house” is the Hart Park headquarters building.) Bobbie arrived in June 1946, just in time for Hart to die. In July she and Fred married. That same month she was indoctrinated into Newhall life when she attended her first Fourth of July Parade. Later she helped organize the parades.

There almost wasn’t a parade in 1955. The organizers couldn’t get it together that year. At Bobbie’s insistence, 14 of Newhall’s finest, including several Truebloods, grabbed flags and marched down what is now Main Street.

Funny story. Her “friends” insisted she carry the Union Jack, what with her being a Brit and all. Nobody could find one. But some wag came up with a relatively close approximation – a flag of the South – and they made her carry it. To this day, people wonder why the only known photo of the 1955 parade shows somebody carrying a Confederate flag. They thought nobody would know the difference. And they certainly couldn’t have predicted this “Internet” thing that has kept it in play.

The Signal, 7-6-1973

It was a virtual repeat in 1973 when July 4 fell on a Wednesday. The Chamber of Commerce wanted to move the Fourth of July Parade to the weekend, when the businesses were closed, and make it the Seventh or Eighth of July Parade. Bobbie would have none of it. The Fourth of July is the Fourth of July, darn it. On July 4, she marched down the street in what was thereafter known as “Bobbie’s parade.”

More correctly, she was carried.

“The centerpiece was Bobbie in a flowing white dress,” Newhall writes, “carried on high on a litter borne by six volunteer Rotarians and waving, on a single staff, the Stars and Stripes and England’s Union Jack” – the real Union Jack this time.

The Signal (then under Scott and Ruth Newhall’s ownership) made a big deal of it, and the message took. Three short years later, for the nation’s bicentennial, Jo Anne Darcy was in charge of the parade. Darcy’s parade on July 4, 1976, had more entries than the parade has seen since.

Of course, Bobbie was in that parade. Bobbie would participate in 50 consecutive Newhall Fourth of July Parades. Nobody comes close other than Montie Montana, and that was the Tournament of Roses Parade, not Newhall’s Fourth. Bobbie and Ruth Newhall were co-grand marshals in 1995.

~~~~~

After Bobbie and Fred wed, they bought a house in Bill Bonelli’s “Santa Clarita” housing tract in Dry Canyon, which was renamed Seco Canyon because someone thought it sounded better in Spanish.

They raised four children – Fred III, John, Michael and Kyltie – and sent them to Hart High. It was the town’s only high school at the time.

Bobbie’s father-in-law, Fred Trueblood Sr., died in 1960, and the family sold The Signal a couple of years later. Scott and Ruth Newhall bought it in 1963 and hired Bobbie to write the society column. She had written it previously, on a temporary basis, when her family owned the paper. She stayed with The Signal “until (Scott’s) attacks on her favorite politicians became too venomous to overlook,” Ruth writes.

Bobbie wasn’t just writing about the social scene – today we’d call it the nonprofit sector – she was living it. She was the first female president of the Newhall-Saugus Boys Club, which added girls in the early 1970s and became one of the first Boys and Girls Clubs in the United States. They made her “Man of the Year.”

Bobbie with Maureen Reagan, the president’s daughter

“Woman of the Year” was an appellation she received in 1972 from the Newhall-Saugus-Valencia Chamber of Commerce. (The NSV Chamber became the SCV Chamber in 1980, and the SCV Man and Woman of the Year awards were later transferred to an independent committee of past recipients.)

The previous year, in 1971, Bobbie became the first employee of Henry Mayo Newhall (then called Memorial) Hospital. The hospital board formed in 1970 and needed a director of community relations to spread the word about the planned hospital and organize support groups. Her intimacy with the local movers and shakers made Bobbie the ideal candidate. The hospital broke ground in 1972 and opened in 1975.

Bobbie was everywhere – everywhere a charity needed her to be. She helped get the Boys (and Girls) Club Benefit Auction off the ground in 1972 (still going strong). She presided over the first meeting in 1975 of the SCV Historical Society (still going strong). She is credited with naming St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Newhall – for another one of the organizers, Judy Stevens, a Hart High School math teacher. As for the spelling, there’s a St. Stephen but no St. Steven. (Still going strong.)

Ed and Bobbie Trueblood Davis

Meanwhile, she bolstered her Republican credentials both locally and professionally in a town that once voted Democrat but switched around 1970. She was a leader in the Republican Women’s Federated and other GOP clubs, and she represented Assemblyman Newt Russell and State Sen. Ed Reinecke as a field deputy.

Her husband of 33 years, Fred Trueblood Jr., died in April 1979.

In 1980 she latched onto local Assemblyman Bob Cline’s campaign for state senate. He lost. Ed Davis, the fiery ex-LAPD chief, won. In January 1981, Ed hired the woman with all of the local credentials – “Mrs. Republican” – to serve on his legislative staff. Three years later, they married.

Ed drove the car that carried Bobbie and Ruth in the 1995 parade.

“It was more comfortable than being carried in a litter, but maybe not quite so much fun,” Ruth remembered.

~~~~~

Bobbie Trueblood Davis is survived by her four children: Fred Trueblood III, John Trueblood, Michael Trueblood and Kyltie Trueblood; five grandchildren: Lisa Hothan, Holland Hothan, Danielle Hofing, Cielo Fromme and Edward Trueblood; three great-grandchildren: Amelia Fromme, Isobelle Fromme and Hunter Hothan; her brother, Ivor Nash, and his children, Kathryn Nash and Simon Nash.

A private service is being planned in the Morro Bay area.

 

Comment On This Story
COMMENT POLICY: We welcome comments from individuals and businesses. All comments are moderated. Comments are subject to rejection if they are vulgar, combative, or in poor taste.
REAL NAMES ONLY: All posters must use their real individual or business name. This applies equally to Twitter account holders who use a nickname.

5 Comments

  1. Jim Ventress says:

    Bobbie was so community minded. When I first came to the SCV in 1985 as the Executive Director of the Boys & Girls Club she was one of the people who helped shape the Annual Auction. She was also our first female Board President in 1975. We thank her for caring. May she Rest In Peace.

  2. Pat Willett says:

    Interesting that you use a photo of Bobbie with the baby elephant. If it’s the one I think it is, it was used in a telethon to support the Boys & Girls Club on the local cable TV channel. There aren’t enough paper towels in the world to mop up what that baby elephant did in our studio!!!

  3. Oscar Le Rouge says:

    You left out some relatives that survive her.
    Her grand daughter who cared for her for the last 4 years ’Brette’

Leave a Comment


SCV NewsBreak
LOCAL NEWS HEADLINES
Monday, Feb 26, 2024
SCV Realtor Recognized Among Wilk’s Black History Month Spotlight
In honor of Black History Month, California State Sen. Scott Wilk, R-Santa Clarita, is pleased to recognize several prominent Black community leaders and organizations who are making a difference across Senate District 21.
Monday, Feb 26, 2024
Landmark Legislation Announced for School Employees Paid Pregnancy Leave
State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond joined educators and members of the California Teachers Association Monday on the west steps of the California State Capitol to announce historic legislation—the Pregnancy Leave for Educators Act.
Monday, Feb 26, 2024
Santa Clarita Student Earns CA Jaycee Foundation Scholarship
The California Jaycee Foundation announced Monday Alexander Bonfiglio of Golden Valley High School is one of eight graduating high school seniors receiving a $1,000 Scholarship resulting from the annual competition completed in January 2024.
Keep Up With Our Facebook

Latest Additions to SCVNews.com
The Master's University women's basketball team got to within one in the final quarter, but it was the Menlo Oaks that pulled away in the end to get the 67-60 win Saturday afternoon in The MacArthur Center.
Lady Mustangs Drop Regular Season Finale to Menlo Oaks 60-67
In honor of Black History Month, California State Sen. Scott Wilk, R-Santa Clarita, is pleased to recognize several prominent Black community leaders and organizations who are making a difference across Senate District 21.
SCV Realtor Recognized Among Wilk’s Black History Month Spotlight
State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond joined educators and members of the California Teachers Association Monday on the west steps of the California State Capitol to announce historic legislation—the Pregnancy Leave for Educators Act.
Landmark Legislation Announced for School Employees Paid Pregnancy Leave
The California Jaycee Foundation announced Monday Alexander Bonfiglio of Golden Valley High School is one of eight graduating high school seniors receiving a $1,000 Scholarship resulting from the annual competition completed in January 2024.
Santa Clarita Student Earns CA Jaycee Foundation Scholarship
The city of Santa Clarita’s Film Office released the list of nine productions currently filming in the Santa Clarita Valley for the week of Monday, Feb. 26 - Sunday, March 3.
Nine Productions Currently Filming in Santa Clarita
The Santa Clarita Community College District Board of Trustees will hold a special meeting Wednesday, Feb. 28, at 2 p.m.
COC Board to Consider Amendment to Purchase of 30,000-Square-Foot Tech Center
The regular meeting of the Saugus Union School District Governing Board will take place Tuesday, Feb. 27, with closed session beginning at 5:15p.m., followed immediately by public session at 6:30 p.m.
Saugus School Board to Consider Staff Reductions
Since City incorporation in 1987, public safety has remained a top priority for the city of Santa Clarita.
Ken Striplin | Time to Take a Heads Up! Mindset
The California Department of Transportation has scheduled lane closures on the northbound and southbound State Route 14 between Technology Drive in Palmdale and Avenue A in Lancaster, closing up to three lanes.
Caltrans Announces SR-14 Lane Closures
The Sierra Hillbillies is inviting the community to put on green and add shamrocks and leprechauns to its next monthly dance on Sunday, March 3, from 2 p.m to 5 p.m., at Valencia United Methodist Church.
March 3: Sierra Hillbillies Hosting Leprechaun’s Dance
It's the goal of every basketball team to cut down the nets.
Mustangs Capture Conference Title with Win Over Menlo Oaks 80-73
1923 - U.S. release of Charles Chaplin film "The Pilgrim," partially shot at Saugus Train Station & Newhall First Presbyterian Church [watch]
The Pilgrim
1936 - U.S. release of Silent Era's last feature, "Modern Times" with Charles Chaplin, partially shot in SCV [story]
Modern Times scene
1993 - Jury awards Newhall Land $2.3 million for "Valencia" trademark infringement by Palmer apartments at Valle del Oro, Newhall [story]
Palmer Guilty
Author and illustrator Vashti Harrison (Film/Video MFA 14) has been named the recipient of the 2024 Randolph Caldecott Medal for the most distinguished American picture book for children for her book "Big."
CalArtian Wins 2024 Caldecott Medal
Earlier this month, CSUN’s College of Health and Human Development recognized 10 physical therapy students for winning scholarships from the Roy and Roxie Campanella Foundation and the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation.
CSUN Physical Therapy Students Honored by Campanella, Dodgers Foundations
The Master's University men's basketball team was nearly perfect down the stretch as they defeated the Jessup Warriors 72-65 Thursday night at The MacArthur Center.
Mustangs Defense Comes Up Big in Win Over Jessup 72-65
Scoring 23 points in the final quarter, The Master's University women's basketball team broke open a close game to defeat the Jessup Warriors 59-45 Thursday night in The MacArthur Center.
Lady Mustangs Pull Away in 4th to Defeat Warriors 59-45
Calling all Junior High and High School students – bring your IDs and join us for discounted ice skating at The Cube – Ice and Entertainment Center | Powered by FivePoint Valencia, located at 27745 Smyth Drive.
City Releases Schedule for High School Nights at The Cube
Valencia-based Lief Labs, a premier formulation and product development innovator and manufacturer of dietary supplements which was founded in February of 2008, marked the completion of its 15th year of business with a celebratory event at Lief’s Valencia headquarters on Friday, Feb. 16.
Valencia-Based Lief Labs Celebrates 15 Years
The Santa Clarita City Council will hold a public safety meeting Tuesday, Feb. 27, at 4 p.m., followed by its regular meeting at 6 p.m.
Feb. 27: City Council Expected Consider Parks Vacancy Applicants
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed Friday 78 new cases and one additional death from COVID-19 in the Santa Clarita Valley within the last week.
Public Health Ends Weekly COVID-19 Updates
Recently, the Department of Public Health received a Proposition 65 Notice from the California Department of Toxic Substances Control regarding the threatened illegal discharge of hazardous waste from the Chiquita Canyon Landfill.
Prop 65 Notice Issued to L.A. County for Chiquita Canyon Landfill
One of my favorite passions is traveling, especially to exotic countries to explore different cultures and lifestyles – and if I can’t travel, I love to escape within the pages of a book.
Bill Miranda | Santa Clarita Unveils One Story One City Selection
SCVNews.com