Norman Westbay June 18, 1949 – March 13, 2023
Norman Ralph Westbay, 73, of Nipomo passed away peacefully at home, surrounded by his loved ones, on March 13, 2023, after a long courageous battle with cancer.
Norman was born on June 18, 1949 in Corcoran, CA, and graduated from Corcoran High School in 1967. He was the son of Ralph and Leona Westbay.
Norman was a heavy machinery mechanic for almost 50 years and absolutely loved his work.
He loved taking things apart and putting them back together again. Even more than turning wrenches, Norman’s real joy came from operating heavy earth moving equipment. He spent many an hour in the dirt yards of Quinn Company (Caterpillar) with his children, Jonathan and Crystal, teaching them how to run loaders, backhoes, and graders. They could see how much joy it brought him. He also enjoyed helping mentor younger mechanics and teaching them the ropes, knowing that sharing his wisdom with others was much more important than keeping it to one’s self.
When the work day was done, Norman spent his remaining hours teaching his children how to play baseball and softball and coaching their teams. He spent countless hours pitching batting practice, drilling, and coaching. His philosophy towards coaching was simple, teach the kids the game, let them play the game, let them make mistakes, and help them get better. Winning was important, yes, but more important than winning was that each player became better by practicing and working through mistakes. This not only made them better ball players, but better people. Norman’s teams won several league championships an even a big regional girls softball tournament.
Most important to Norman was his family and setting the right example for them. Although he only had two children, it was not uncommon that people unrelated to Norman would call him “Pops” or “Uncle Norman”. This included his children’s friends and teammates and close relatives, several of whom who grew up in broken homes without a solid father figure. Many of these people to this day still look up to Norman as one of the most important male role models in their life. This was possible because he was always a man who lived by and stood by his principles, his honor and his integrity. He instilled these values into everyone’s life he touched.
He was survived by his children, Jonathan and wife Lauren Westbay, his daughter Crystal Westbay; his grandchildren Mahdyson, Riley and Fisher Stark and Dylan, Isaac and Brielle Westbay; his sister, Wanda Murphy; niece Kim Rodrigues and her husband Dan, their children Megan and Lauren Rodrigues, niece Ronnette Whitaker and her husband Darrell, nephew Eugene Murphy and wife Eva, and daughter Kristin; and several cousins. No services are planned at Norman’s request.