January 11, 2020
WHITTIER – A memorial service for Thelma Sinnitt, a World War II U.S. Navy veteran who went on to become an award-winning artist, will be held at 10 a.m. May 23 at Granada Heights Friends Church in La Mirada. Born March 11, 1920, in St. Louis, Mo., Sinnitt had been a resident of Whittier for 50 years. She died of natural causes at Whittier Hospital Medical Center, said her son, Dennis Moonitz of South Whittier. Recently, she had been living in Whittier Hills Health Center. In an interview for this newspaper that appeared Feb. 11, 1997, Sinnitt said she joined the Waves, the women’s division of the Navy, as soon as women were invited to enlist. From 1987 on, she painted every Monday afternoon in Carman Leong’s oil painting classes. During that period her work, especially her portraits, won many top awards. Sinnitt is survived by her brother, Arthur Leighton, of Norfolk, Va.; son Dennis Moonitz of South Whittier; five grandchildren; and 10 great-grandchildren. Sinnitt has been cremated and her ashes will be spread at sea off of Portugese Bend. – From staff reports160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Trained as a yeoman at Stillwater, Okla., she served two years at Great Lakes Naval Base, then finished out her enlistment at the women’s barracks on Coronado Island in Southern California. After her separation from the Waves, Sinnitt married the man to whom she had been engaged for several years. She gave birth to their son. After divorcing her first husband, Sinnitt entered Hollywood Artists Center School and met and married artist Stan Sinnitt. Working as a private secretary for Moore Business Forms in Los Angeles, she moved with the company to Whittier 50 years ago, where she became absorbed in her art and community service. She served as a volunteer for the Rio Hondo Chapter of the American Red Cross, Friendly Hills Health Care Network, and the Whittier Senior Citizens Center.