Patricia Dreizler “Matriarch of Redondo Beach,” dies at 96

Patricia Dreizler, 1926-2022, led, created and/or facilitated a list of non-profits in the South Bay. Photo courtesy of Dreizler family

Redondo Unified School District Superintndent Steven Keller poses with Patricia Dreizler at the 2018 naming of Patriciat Dreizler Continuation High School.

by Garth Meyer

On June 5, a week before her 96th birthday, Patricia Dreizler died in her sleep at her home in Redondo Beach.  

Renowned for her community involvement since the 1960s, she was honored four years ago with the re-naming of Redondo Shores Continuation School to Patricia Allen Dreizler Continuation High School. 

Though she never worked for the district, changing the school name was a way to recognize Dreizler’s service to the community.

“Patricia Dreizler was the true matriarch of Redondo Beach,” said Mayor Bill Brand. “She was universally loved because she was classy, smart and compassionate. She will be missed but remembered.”

Dreizler lived in Redondo Beach since 1956. A native of Independence Missouri, she was a schoolmate of President Harry Truman’s daughter. Her great uncle was Phogg Allen, the man who built the University of Kansas basketball program.

In Redondo Beach, first acting as a volunteer with city Parks & Recreation, Dreizler’s work led to a paid supervisory position. She created and became the head of the Department of Community Resources in 1975, “because nobody knew what I did,” she joked.

She was the first female department head in city history. 

All told, across the decades, Dreizler led more than 35 non-profits and created, facilitated and/or supported hundreds of others, including Redondo Beach Historical Museum, Juvenile Diversion Project, South Bay Drug Abuse Coalition Board, Beach Cities Committee on Aging and South Bay Coalition for Alternatives to Domestic Violence. She helped create the annual Redondo Beach Sunrise Easter Sunday service in Veterans Park in 1960.

“Patricia Dreizler embodied love, care, and a relentless advocacy for the underdog,” said Redondo Unified School District Superintendent Steven Keller. “RBUSD is a better learning community because of her. It makes sense that we named a school after her. God, I will miss her.”

She retired from the City in 1989.

Dreizler then collaborated with writer Mary Ann Keating, aided by the city Historical Commission to write “Redondo Beach 1880-1930”, illustrating local history through old postcards. 

Divorced in 1969, Dreizler raised her six children from then on as a single, working mother.

In later years, to the end of her life she was an advisor for Redondo Beach Round Table.

Other volunteerism included work with South Bay Youth Group, 1736 House, the Redondo Beach Woman’s Club and serving on the Beach Cities Health District Board. 

She is survived by her four sons, two daughters, 12 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. 

“She was very much loved by many in the community,” said son Carl Dreizler. “She’s leaving a big hole in the community. Luckily there’s a lot of other leaders to pick up where she left off.”ER

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