Roger R. Block
April 15, 2012—Washoe Valley, Nev.
Roger Richard Block passed away April 15, 2012, in the home he shared with Gayle, his wife of 37 years.
Roger was born and raised in southern New Jersey, graduated from Gloucester Catholic High School in Gloucester City, N.J., in 1971.
Family, faith and friends were most important to Roger. Roger and Gayle traveled the world for business and pleasure, and were active in the northern Nevada business community since 1984.
Roger was a member of Corpus Christi Catholic Community in Carson City, Nev.; a member of the Knights of Columbus, serving as its Grand Knight from 2007-2009; an avid pilot, having flown more than 125 missions with Young Eagles, sharing his love of aviation with children; a member of Carson City EAA Chapter 403; on the education and outreach committee of the Reno Air Race Foundation; an Amateur Radio Operator, KD7UT, for more than 40 years; loved astronomy, serving as president of the Orlando Astronomy Society in 1973. He was awarded two U.S. patents and one Canadian patent. Other hobbies included scuba diving, with more than 200 dives, as well as golfing and bowling.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Walter and Grace, and is survived by his two brothers, W. Ronald Block of Clarksboro, N.J., and Robert Block Sr. of Tulsa, Okla.
Donations in Roger’s memory may be made to the Corpus Christi Kitchen Fund, 3597 Sunridge Dr., Carson City, NV 89705; EAA Chapter 403, 2500 College Pkwy., Suite 403, Carson City, NV 89706; or the Reno Air Race Foundation Education and Outreach Committee, 14501 Mt. Anderson Street, Reno, NV 89506.
Joseph E. Duhart
March 3, 2012—Reno, Nev.
Joseph E. Duhart passed away March 3, 2012. He was born Nov. 5,1918 in Worcester, Mass., to Joseph and Octavia Duhart.
Joe raised three children: Ronnie Wilt, born in Saint Louis, Mo., in 1943, and Michael and Cherie Duhart, born in Reno in 1946 and 1949, respectively.
Joe attended schools in Worcester until the ninth grade. While growing up during the Great Depression, and being raised by a single mother, Joe left school in 1934. He sought work to help his mother with family expenses. He worked in a number of factories and foundries, as well other short-term jobs for the first two years after leaving school. He would send 50 percent of his wages home to his family. In 1940 he enlisted in the U.S. Army.
Because of near-blind vision in his right eye, he was stationed stateside and was honorably discharged in 1943. He worked on the docks and shipyards in Seattle and San Francisco.
In 1944, he met the love of his life, Alice Marie Wilt. Alice, her sister Doris, and their mother, Letha, were moving to Reno, and Joe followed Alice.
Joe and Alice were married in Reno in the spring of 1945. He joined the local fire department that summer, and went on to work five of the largest fires in the history of the city of Reno, including the Lake Street fire in 1948; the Sierra Street blast in 1957, the Grand Hotel fire in 1959, the Golden Hotel fire in 1962, and the Alley Kat club explosion in 1965.
Joe and Alice raised not only their own children, but had a very productive 13 years of raising numerous infant foster children until they were placed into adoptive homes. In 1974, Joe and Alice divorced, but remained good friends until her passing in 2004. During retirement, Joe coached girls fast-pitch softball, and coached many of the best players who have ever played in the community. Joe was preceded in death by his father in 1929, mother in 1984, sister Jean, 1974, brother Henry 1984, brother Paul 2008, and brother Norman (Pete) 2011, his daughter Cherie 1987.
Joe is survived by Ron and Marissa Wilt, Mike and Dorene Duhart, nine grandchildren and 11 great-grand children.
Richard O. Kwapil
April 18, 2012—Reno, Nev.
Richard O. Kwapil, 73, known passed away April 18, 2012. He was known as “Buzz,” a nickname from his older sister, Carmel, because he was always “buzzing around” as a young child.
Buzz was married for almost 20 years to Nancy Edwards Kwapil. In 1992, Buzz asked each of Nancy's three adult children, Kathi, John and Jim, for her hand in marriage, explaining he'd been diagnosed with cancer in 1990 and wasn't sure how long he had to live, but wanted to spend the rest of his few years with their mom, if they approved. Nancy's children happily agreed and joined Corinne (Cori) and niece Elena to become a blended Kwapil family spanning Reno, Houston, Denver and Johannesburg, South Africa. Buzz frequently commented how blessed he was to have had two wonderful, beautiful wives and such a large, loving family to whom he became a father.
Buzz's first sweetheart was Leah Rae Larson, whom he married in 1962 and who passed away on 1991. Buzz and Leah were blessed when Corinne Marie Kwapil arrived on May 14, 1969; the couple was predeceased by two stillborn sons in 1970 and 1971. Buzz's niece, Elena, arrived to the Kwapil home in 1979 after his sister, Carmel Bannick, passed away from cancer. Buzz and Leah raised Elena as their second daughter.
A lawyer, world traveler, philanthropist, devout Catholic and bon vivant, Buzz fought non-Hodgkins lymphoma for more than two decades, becoming what he called a poster boy for his Reno oncologists and Stanford experimental treatment programs. What finally defeated him was the late effect of radiation on his heart and lungs after a treatment in July 2011 for a tumor near his heart. Regarding his prognosis-defying ordeal with cancer, Buzz declared, "When the going gets tough, the tough get going."
He graduated from Reno High School in 1956, from the University of Santa Clara in 1960 and from the University of California Hastings College of the Law in 1963.
Often referring to himself as "just a country lawyer," Buzz was a member of the Woodburn and Wedge law firm in Reno, Nev., from 1963 until his retirement in 2005. From its establishment in 1994, he served as chairman and president of the Leonette Foundation, a philanthropy that supports innovative medical and assistance programs for needy seniors and deprived children who fall through the cracks of government assistance programs in northern Nevada.
For the last 30 years of his professional law practice, Buzz served as attorney for the Catholic Diocese of Reno-Las Vegas, encompassing the entire state.
In 2005, Pope Benedict conferred on Buzz a special Papal Award, Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice, a token of recognition for a life of service to the Catholic Church and the public. Buzz was also a Knight of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre, having received the highest rank of Knight of the Grand Cross. Since 1963, Buzz was also a member of Reno Prospectors' Club.
Buzz is survived by his widow, Nancy, daughters Corinne Kwapil-Golden (Kenny), Elena (Nena) Bannick Ross (Ben) and Kathi Walther Bouma (Richard); sons, John Walther (Kay), Jim Walther (Lisa); 18 grandchildren and one great-grandchild.
Memorial contributions may be made to Catholic Charities of Northern Nevada, 500 E. 4th Street, Reno, Nevada 89512, and Bishop Manogue High School, 110 Bishop Manogue Dr., Reno, Nevada, 89511.
Edward C. Spoon, Sr.
May 11, 2012—Reno, Nev.
Edward C. Spoon, Sr., 80, died May 11, 2012, of complications from dementia and Parkinson's. Born Dec. 24, 1931, in Reno, the lifelong Nevadan graduated from Reno High School and attended the University of Nevada, Reno. He served the city as third ward city councilman twice.
He enjoyed softball, playing well into his 60s, travel, Nevada football and basketball, and was an avid golfer.
Ed was passionate about Reno, a loving father and respected man. His infectious smile and laugh will be greatly missed by all those who knew Ed along the way.
He is survived by three children, Gene, of Reno; David, of Dallas, Texas; and Edward Jr., of Las Vegas; eight grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.
Memorial contributions may be made in his name to First Tee of Northern Nevada, 1575 Delucchi Lane, Suite 104, Reno, NV 89502; or to Wolf Pack Athletics c/o Ed Spoon Memorial, Mail Stop 162, Reno, NV 89557.
Don C. Prusso ’58 (botany), emeritus faculty of biology
April 3, 2012—Fernley, Nev.
In lieu of flowers, please send a donation in Don Carlos Prusso's name to the SPCA, 4950 Spectrum Blvd., Reno, NV 89512.
Gregory J. Rice, boxing coach
May 11, 2012—Reno, Nev.
Greg Rice passed away on May 11, 2012, at the age of 77. He was born Sept. 8, 1934 in Detroit to John and Mae Rice. After retiring as an account executive, Greg relocated to Reno in 1990 where he immediately found a new home as a coach with the University of Nevada, Reno Boxing Team. You could find Coach Rice at the Fourth Street Gym every afternoon training young men to be champions, not only in the ring, but also in life. Greg is survived by his wife, Janet, and his two daughters, Colleen and Shannon. The family requests that in lieu of flowers; please consider a memorial contribution to either www.MyStuffBags.org or Kids Kottage.
Deane A. Stites, School of Medicine clinical instructor
April 23, 2012—Reno, Nev.
Deane Stites, 65, passed away April 23, 2012. Deane was born Feb. 22, 1947, in Oakes, N.D.
He graduated from Oakes High in 1965 and attended the University of North Dakota, where he received a bachelor’s in 1969 and a master’s in physiology and pharmacology in 1972. He earned his medical degree from Tufts University in 1975, and completed his orthopedic residency at the University of California, San Francisco in 1979.
Deane started his orthopedic practice in Truckee, Calif., in 1979, and soon became a board certified orthopedic surgeon. He served several appointments as chief of staff of Tahoe Forest Hospital, taught as a clinical instructor for the University of Nevada, Reno and UC Davis, and was a member of the Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. He was a dedicated surgeon, respected mentor and inspiration to many.
"Papa Deano" was a loving husband, devoted father and doting grandfather. He was an avid golfer and loved the outdoors. In the past two years, he bravely battled pulmonary fibrosis, the same autoimmune disease that claimed his own father. Deane received the ultimate gift of a lung transplant in April—he was extremely excited for his second chance at life. He fought so hard to live and was optimistic about his future. Deane had six beautiful days at home, off oxygen for the first time in years, before having a pulmonary embolism.
Deane's interests included golf, boating (always as captain of the boat), travel, snow skiing, music and family. Deano's innate shyness was more than offset by his dry humor and engaging smile. He was the quiet center of our family—he had an eternal twinkle in his eye and he gave the world’s best hugs.
Deane is survived by his wife, Sue Stites; his children, Ryan and Anneliese, Alison and Ty and Julie; his grandchildren, Bodi, Jaxson, Kinley, Finnegan, and Resi; his brothers, Randy, Tom and Syl, and Greg and Nancy.
Memorial Fund for Deane Stites has been established t Wells Fargo Bank—account number 7219070195—where donations will be distributed to transplant-related nonprofit organizations, so the gift of life can continue in Deane's honor. Please donate at the Galena, Incline or Truckee Wells Fargo Banking Centers, or mail to Wells Fargo 5340 Kietzke Lane, Reno NV 89511 c/o Steve Russell.
John H. Woodbridge, School of Medicine professor
March 28, 2012—Reno, Nev.
John Howard Woodbridge passed away March 28, 2012. He was born in Mississippi to Hardy and Bertha Woodbridge on Oct. 7, 1915. They lived in several towns in Mississippi; Hardy worked for the railroad. John graduated from high school in Canton and attended the University of Mississippi, where he was a member of the Delta Psi fraternity. Following in the footsteps of his grandfather and uncle, he transferred to Tulane University in New Orleans, where he completed his undergraduate degree. John then took his medical training at Tulane University Medical School and joined Phi Chi medical fraternity.
World War II came along just as he finished his training. He joined the Army as a flight surgeon and was sent to North Africa, attached to General Montgomery's army, and later to Sicily and Italy with the American forces. He was promoted to major, receiving seven battle stars. John returned to New Orleans nearly four years later to complete his residency at Charity Hospital.
It was in San Luis Obispo, Calif., that he met and married Madelin, his wife. While in San Luis Obispo he was active in Rotary, the Caballeros Club and the San Luis Obispo Symphony. He practiced internal medicine for nearly 20 years, and then moved to St. Louis to do complete sub-specialty training in Cardiology at Washington University. He was chief of cardiology at Deaconess Hospital and served on several charitable boards.
After seven years in St. Louis, the couple moved to Reno, where Dr. Woodbridge taught physical diagnosis at University of Nevada Medical School. John was active in Trinity Episcopal Church, served on the board of directors of the Nevada Opera and Nevada Self Help, and was a member of the Rotary Club International for more than 60 years.
He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers George and Hardy, Jr.; son, Fredrik; and daughter, Marguerite. He is survived by his wife, Madelin, and daughter, Catherine
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Trinity Episcopal Church or the Food Bank of Northern Nevada.
Terri L. Sonner
March 29, 2012—Sparks, Nev.
Terri Sonner passed away March 29, 2012, of complications from a brain aneurysm March 17, 2012.
She loved the outdoors, hiking and camping, from the trails of the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest, Rocky Mountain National Park and Italy's Cinque Terra coast, to her favorite beaches in
Rehobeth, Del.; Myrtle, N.C.; Cocoa, Fla.; and Pismo, Calif.
Born Feb. 6, 1960, she graduated with a degree in geology from the University of Iowa in 1982,
where she and classmates formed the fictional rock band “Mary Metamorphic and the Gneiss Girls.” That year she married her high school sweetheart, Scott, who she met on the band trip to march in the Cotton Bowl parade. Daughters Angela (1985) and Kathryn (1988) were born in Des Moines, and son Zachary (1996) in Manassas, Va., where Terri worked as assistant manager at Chevy Chase bank outside Washington D.C. and served on the Prince William County Litter Council.
She was a soccer mom, baseball mom, basketball mom and softball mom who loved spending time with her family more than anything. She returned to school at the University of Nevada, Reno to further her study of nature and the environment and earn a degree for her job at the U..S Forest Service. As a civil engineer tech, she wore many hats, but her passion was helping design and build campgrounds and facilities accessible to the disabled, the most recent at the summit of the Mount Rose Highway connecting Reno to Lake Tahoe. She and Zachary were active at Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd, where she taught Sunday school. She loved the Iowa State Fair, Rose Bowl, Omaha Zoo, Shenandoah National Park, Disney World, Chicago blues festival, Kansas City jazz, Rubicon trail, Venice, Florence, Rome, the Iowa Hawkeyes, Nevada Wolf Pack and Reno Aces. She and Scott shared their love for music the past year with Widespread Panic, Mickey Hart Band, Buster Blue, and most recently, in February with Terri's favorite band, Mumbo Gumbo, where she sang and danced like there was no tomorrow.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Ed and Lucille Hoovler, and sister Karen. Terri is survived by her husband, Scott, daughters Angela and Kathryn, son Zachary, and numerous nephews and nieces, the eldest Daniel Dickensheet of Oklahoma City.
John “Jack” A. Goetz, Jr. ’43 (electrical engineering)
March 12, 2012—Reno, Nev.
John “Jack” A. Goetz, Jr. passed away March 12, 2012. He is preceded in death by his beloved wife of 68 years, Dorothy, who passed away in July 2011. He is survived by his daughter, Claudia; sons Russ, Ted and Tom; and five grandchildren.
A native of Oakland, Calif., Jack obtained his bachelor's degree in electrical engineering school from the University of Nevada, Reno in 1943. Following graduation, he was recruited by NACA (pre-NASA) to work at the Ames Aeronautical Laboratory at Moffit Field, Calif. He was involved in wind tunnel and free flight testing of military aircraft.
In 1949, after moving to the East Coast, he began his lengthy career with IBM at the Poughkeepsie, N.Y., electronics lab. He worked with electron tube design and development during IBM's pre-computer programs. Later, he rose to senior electrical engineer and then to managerial positions while working on a variety of projects on both coasts, including NASA's Gemini and Apollo space programs. He had the opportunity to meet and plan with Werner von Braun and other rocket scientists and engineers at the Huntsville, Ala., facility during this time.
Jack retired from IBM after 30 years, and for the next five years focused his efforts on the International Standards Committee of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers in Manhattan. He represented the United States at several meetings of the International Electrotechnical Commission around the world. This whet his appetite for travel and he and Dorothy continued to explore both domestically and internationally for several years before settling back in Reno in 1990.
Jack volunteered his time at the College of Engineering at the University of Nevada, Reno, and on scholarship committees of the University Club and the Alumni Association. For many years, he volunteered at the Community Food Bank. He enjoyed a diverse world that ranged from biblical archeology to gardening, symphony concerts, tennis, walking and all Wolf
He was an active parishioner at St. Albert the Great Catholic Church, serving as a Eucharistic minister until a few years ago.
Jack's passion for amateur radio (ham radio) activities was second only to his love for Dorothy. He held the oldest ham radio license in the state of Nevada and was an active member of both the University’s Radio Pack and the Sierra Nevada Amateur Radio Society. He participated in numerous training and actual emergency events.
H. Allen Gallaway ’47 (mechanical engineering)
April 21, 2012—Fernley, Nev.
H. Allen Gallaway passed away April 21, 2012. He was born July 6, 1920, to Harry and Elizabeth Gallaway. He was raised in Thompson, Nev., where his father worked at the smelter for Mason Valley Mines Co. His family later moved to Reno, where he attended Mount Rose Elementary School, Franklin McKinley, St. Thomas Aquinas and Reno High School. He attended the University of Nevada, Reno for two years, before joining the Marines during World War II.
In 1944, he married his high school sweetheart, Marion L. Rovetti, in Quantico, Va. As a
Allen was at the Battle of Guam, the Battle of Iwo Jima, where he acted as beach commander, and in Okinawa, where he was training for the invasion of Japan as the war ended. Allen was honorably discharged as a lieutenant colonel and returned to Reno to attend the University, where he graduated with a degree in mechanical engineering in 1947.
Allen started Gallaway Construction by building 20 homes on a ranch purchased from Marion's parents on the outskirts of Reno at Plumb Lane and Lakeside Drive. He went on to build numerous commercial buildings in Reno. After 30 years of building, Allen retired and bought a 40-acre ranch in Fernley, Nev., where he lived for the next 25 years.
He enjoyed hunting, fishing and traveling the country in his Winnebago. He then sold the ranch and moved back to Reno, to be close to family.
Allen was preceded in death by his parents; loving wife, Marion; his brother, Howard Gallaway; and his sisters, Marion Edwards and Edith Downing.
He is survived by his son, Rodd G. Gallaway of Montana; his daughters, Marilynn A. Gallaway (Robert Lowen) of California and Sandra L. Meiser (Mark Meiser) of Reno, and his grandson, Douglas Allen Meiser of Reno.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the American Parkinson Disease Association.
John R. Gamble ’48 (agriculture), ’56M.Ed. (education)
Feb. 29, 2012—Carson City, Nev.
John R. Gamble passed away at his home in Carson City, Nev., on Feb. 29, 2012. He was born in Reno on Feb. 18, 1923, to Robert R. and Lura T. Gamble of Hazen, Nev.
John's early school years were spent in the Churchill County schools, and he graduated from Fallon High School in 1940. He attended the University of Nevada, until he was called upon to serve his country in World War II. He served in the infantry in the European Theatre for three years. After returning to the United States in 1946, he re-entered the University and earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees.
His professional life was spent serving the state’s public schools system as a teacher and administrator. He began his teaching career in Smith Valley, Nev., followed by several years in teaching vocational agriculture at Pershing County High School. He moved into administration when he was appointed principal of Pershing County High, moving to the county superintendent's position in 1958.
In 1961, John moved to Carson City to serve as curriculum director for the state Department of Education. He worked in several positions there until retiring in 1978 as the state superintendent of public instruction for Nevada.
In retirement, he was instrumental in the establishment of the Bethlehem Lutheran School in Carson City. He is is a longtime member of the Bethlehem Lutheran Church, having served as a volunteer principal for a number of years at the school, as well as an active member of the congregation. He served in many capacities, offices and committees, to assist in the functioning and growth of the church.
John had a deep love for the state of Nevada. He hunted and fished all over the state, sharing these experiences with his sons and teaching them all he knew of the outdoors. In baseball and life in general, he was their most important coach and everyone's biggest fan. These loves have been handed down to his sons and grandchildren and will surely be his enduring legacy.
He was married to Muriel M. Gamble in Lovelock, Nev. in 1946. He is preceeded in death by his wife, Muriel; his mother, Lura T. Gamble; father, Robert R. Gamble; and sister, Lura Gamble Batjer.
He is survived by his sister, Ann Walts, of Fallon, Nev.; his sons, John R. Gamble Jr., David R. Gamble (Diane) and Douglas R. Gamble (Laura); eight grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
Memorials may be made to Bethlehem Lutheran School in Carson City.
Alice R. (Doyle) Leggett ’48 (psychology)
April 13, 2012—Reno, Nev.
Alice Ruth Doyle Leggett passed away April 13, 2012. Known as Ruth, Ruthie or Ooee (family name), she was the daughter of Howard and Willa Doyle, born July 26, 1924 in her family's home on what is now Arlington Avenue. She was one of five children.
As a child, she loved growing up on their ranch on South Virginia, riding her favorite horses. When she was 12, she earned the title of "Best Dressed" in the Reno Rodeo. It was also at a young age that she began to cultivate her talent for singing. She sang at countless weddings and special events. She attended Huffaker Elementary School, Billinghurst Junior High School and Central High (now Reno High). She graduated from the University of Nevada, Reno earning a bachelor’s in psychology, and minored in English. She was active in her sorority, Delta Delta Delta, and remained lifelong friends with many of her sorority sisters.
She married John Brice Leggett in 1948 and they had three children: a son, Jan, and two daughters, Linda and Liesa. She was active in anything her children were doing and served as a PTA president, Cub/Boy Scout leader, Bluebird/Campfire Girl leader and anything and everything else that was needed. She was also active in the First Baptist Church of Reno and the 20th Century Club for many years.
When she discovered metaphysics, her life changed. She was one of the earliest members of the First Church of Religious Science (now Center for Spiritual Living, Reno), serving in every capacity over the years, including as president of the board. In fact, she was at helm when they purchased the property on Lakeside Drive in the 1970s, where it stands today, and was instrumental in its construction. It is part of her legacy, vision and determination that this church community still thrives to this day. She also loved serving as the editor of the church's newsletter and did that for more than 10 years. The church was her passion for many years. Later, her daughter, Liesa, became the minister of this church, with the path paved by her mother.
Later in her life, Ruth took care of not only her own grandchildren (helping to raise a few of them), but also took in other babies and toddlers and gave them a wonderful grandma-type daycare. She loved them all like they were her own.
Ruth loved angels, and had the license plate "ILUV444" (sign of angels) for years. She belonged to book and discussion groups and deeply explored the mystical realm of life. She was open-minded, accepted everyone just as they were, and always took the high road. For years she studied A Course in Miracles and was the model of love, forgiveness and peace. She generously supported organizations all around the world, because she so believed in helping to better humanity.
Until she had a stroke five years ago, she had an active social life. She loved attending local theater performances, going to the movies, and out to lunch and dinner with friends.
Ruthie was one of five children. Her surviving brother, Howard Doyle, Jr., also lives in Reno. His wife, Norma, passed away earlier this year. Their two children, Greg and Gail Doyle, were also so special to Ruth.
She loved her daughter-in-law, Terese, and both her sons-in-law, David Galloway and Joe Garcia. She was adored by her grandchildren, Jan's children: Joshua, Jason, Amy and Emily Leggett; Linda's children: Tony (wife Michon) and Chris Spinelli, and Meagan Olsen (husband Eric); Liesa's children, Stevie Leggett and Felice Garcia. Last year she had her first great-grandchild, Sofia Spinelliilled.
She loved her friends and her family and always kept close tabs on everyone, calling, sending cards, and always letting them know she loved them. Everyone who knew her saw and felt the bright light that emanated from her.
The family wants to extend a heartfelt thank you to her cousin, Joanne (Joey) Kimball, who has been her daily guardian angel for the last five years, as well as the caring staff at her assisted-living facility, Classic Residence.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in her name to the "Grow with God" building fund at Center for Spiritual Living, Reno.
Kenneth C. Williams ’49 (education), ’58M.Ed. (education)
April 12, 2012—Reno, Nev.
Kenneth passed away at his home in Reno April 12, 2012, after battling Parkinson's disease for more than 15 years.
Ken was born June 10, 1925 in Ogden, Utah, to David E. and Mabel Johnson Williams. The family moved to Sparks just days later. He enjoyed his youth, attending Sparks schools. Always an athlete at heart, Ken enjoyed football and basketball while at Sparks High School.
When Ken was 17, World War II interrupted his youth, and he joined the Air Force to follow in his brother's footsteps. Due to flight training programs being suspended, Ken used his typing skills to join the Flying Tigers as Lieutenant General Claire Chennault's clerk.
Ken returned from the war and took advantage of the GI Bill, enrolling at the University of Nevada, where he became the first person in his family to graduate from college. It was there that he met Shirley Campbell, and the two were married in 1948.
Ken began his teaching career in 1948 in Gardnerville, Nev. From 1950 to 1954, Ken taught in Fernley before returning to his Sparks roots at Sparks High School in 1954. He taught chemistry and coached baseball for many years, in addition to being an assistant coach in basketball and football. Ken culminated his Sparks High career by becoming vice principal/athletic director in 1969. In 1973, Ken departed Sparks High to take on the challenge of opening a new school. In 1974, Reed High School opened its doors with Ken as its first principal, a job he held until his retirement in 1982. During his teaching career, he was also the director of the Reno/Sparks Junior Ice Skating Program, where he exposed hundreds of area youth to skating at both the Squaw Valley Blythe Arena and Reno's Centennial Coliseum (now the Reno-Sparks Convention Center). Ken's love of athletics lasted late into his life, as he continued to enjoy tennis, skiing and ice skating.
Ken was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Lloyd Williams; wife, Shirley Williams; and daughter, Kendyl Depoali. He is survived by his sister, Beverly Williams Sausa of Inwood, N.Y.; daughter Jan Martin (Larry) of Sparks; son David Williams of Upland, Calif.; grandchildren Justus Jackson of Inverness, Fla.; Gina Schade (Art) of Fullerton, Calif.; Christina Sheppard (Kris) of Reno; Michelle Depoali (Mark Dunagan) of Reno; and Brenna Williams of St. Louis, Mo.; and five great-grandchildren. Other people who shared his life include former wife, Nancy Williams, and longtime companion Norma Carder.
The family would like to thank Rhodora "Dora" Estrada, her staff and Circle of Life Hospice for their exceptional care of Ken during the last five years.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Kendyl Williams Depoali Scholarship Fund, c/o The Community Foundation of Western Nevada, 1885 S. Arlington Ave., Suite 103 Reno, NV 89509.
Venus (Jolley) Marriage ’50 (physical education)
April 14, 2012—Carson City, Nev.
Venus Jolley Marriage, 83, passed awat April 14, 2012, in Carson City, Nev.
She was born in Springdale, Utah, Oct. 1, 1928, to Nora Crawford Jolley and Donal Jones Jolley, the first park ranger for Zion National Park, where she spent her early years growing up with her sisters Alta, and Lorna, and brother Donal, inside Zion National Park. The family moved to Boulder City, Nev. in 1943, where Venus graduated high school and was active in softball and basketball. She headed off to college at Utah State University, and then transferred to the University of Nevada, Reno, where she earned a bachelor’s in education.
After graduation, she accepted a position as a teacher in Carson City. She taught school and was also involved in the girls physical education program until she married Charles Marriage in 1952. She then returned as a substitute teacher in Carson High School.
She was very active in the Carson community, belonging to a number of bowling leagues over the years, and was an active member in the American Association of University Women during her teaching years.
Venus served tirelessly in many capacities within the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints all of her life, and this allowed her to share her love of music. She played the piano and organ for many years for the church. Her legacy was service to others. She will forever be remembered for her wit, honesty and humor. She set a wonderful example for all to follow.
She is survived by her brother, Donal Jolley of Rimforest, Calif.; and sons, Dan Marriage of Reseda, Calif. and Alan Marriage (Mary) of Carson City.
Deloy H. Anderson, Jr. ’51 (history), ’57M.Ed. (school administration)
March 1, 2012—Reno, Nev.
Deloy H. Anderson, Jr., long time Washoe County School District educator, passed away March 1, 2012, following a lengthy illness.
He was born Nov. 15, 1925, to Deloy H. and Anna Anderson in Ely, Nev., where he attended the Ely elementary schools and graduated from White Pine High School in 1943. He was a multiple-sport athlete, achieving all-state honors in football and basketball and earning a football scholarship to the University of Nevada.
His college education was interrupted when enlisted in the United States Navy. He served four years as a signalman aboard the Destroyer U.S.S. Rooks in the South Pacific, and was involved in numerous battles, including Iwo Jima and Okinawa. Following his honorable discharge, Deloy returned to Reno in 1947 to pursue his education and football career with the Wolf Pack, where he was a member of the 1940 football team.
In 1948, Deloy and the love of his life, the former Pauline Sirkegian, were married in Ely. They returned to Reno where Deloy completed his education at the University and was hired as a history teacher and head football coach at Sparks High School in 1951 by the late Proctor Hug and Edwin "Tip" Whitehead. Deloy remained at Sparks High School until 1968, serving as a coach, teacher, athletic director, vice-principal and principal. From 1968 until 1984, he served as the assistant superintendent in charge of personnel, where he was able to meet, mentor and hire many of the current educators in the Washoe County School District.
Deloy was a member of the University of Nevada Alumni Association, Lambda Chi Alpha Fraternity, American Association of School Administrators, American Association of Secondary School Principals, Nevada Association of School Administrators, Phi Delta Kappa, past president, Rotary Club of Spark past President, Washoe County Parks Commission, White Pine High School Athletic Hall of Fame, Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association Hall of Fame and the "Tin Can Sailors" National Association of Destroyer Veterans.
He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Pauline; daughter, Kim Seidler (Gary) and son Paul, both of Reno; and son, Dee (Elsa) of Houston, Texas. He is also survived by brothers James (Jan) Anderson of Carson City, Nev., Richard (Donna) Anderson of Reno, Jerry (Ann) Anderson of Grass Valley, Calif., brother and sister-in-law Charles and Jacquie Springer of Reno, four grandchildren and three great grandchildren.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Sparks High School Athletic Department, attention Rob Kittrell 353-0550, or the Northern Nevada Food Bank.
Bruno Benna ’53 (physical education)
April 1, 2012—Reno, Nev.
Bruno Benna passed peacefully away April 1, 2012, after a nine-year battle with liver and prostate cancer. Bruno was 83. Ever the fighter, Bruno lived life to the fullest until his final week. Two weeks before his death, he attended the last Nevada home basketball game, cheering his alma mater to victory in the second round of the NIT.
Bruno was born to Italian immigrant parents in Garfield, N.J., on Feb. 13, 1929. His parents met after their arrival in the United States. Had fate not intervened, Bruno's mother would never have made it to this country. Her family was leaving Europe during World War I. They missed their scheduled ship and were forced to take the next available one. As fate would have it, the first ship was sunk by the German Navy. Fortunately for her and northern Nevada, hers arrived safely in America.
Like most immigrants of the time, Bruno's parents labored hard to support their young family. While a teenager, Bruno worked summers as a farm hand, picking lettuce in New Jersey. During the school year, Bruno played basketball and football for Garfield High School, receiving All State honors in basketball in 1947. Due to his size—6-foot-3— and his talent as a basketball player, Bruno was afforded an opportunity to advance his education.
Although he was recruited by Roanoke University and Syracuse University, Bruno accepted a scholarship offer at the University of Nevada from the legendary Nevada basketball coach, Jake Lawlor. In the fall of 1947, Bruno set out West by bus. Thirty-six hours later, with $50 in his pocket, he arrived in Reno. He never left, making Reno his home.
While at the University, Bruno met the love of his life, Edna Baldwin from Los Angeles, Calif. Two years later, on July 2, 1950, Bruno and Edna were married. While working part-time as a bartender at the Little Waldorf Saloon in downtown Reno, Bruno completed his studies, graduating from Nevada in 1953 with a business major and Spanish and education minors.
Upon graduation, Bruno started teaching at B.D. Billinghurst Jr. High in the fall of 1953. When his former teammate, Ingvart Christensen, offered him a job to work in his company, Ready Mix Concrete Co., Bruno started his business career. The two founded C.B. Concrete Company and remained partners until Ingvart's retirement 28 years later. The iconic yellow concrete trucks with the black "Bumble Bee" logo delivered concrete to all major Reno area construction projects for almost 60 years. Bruno's three sons, Steve, Alex and Chris, worked in the business until it was sold to Granite Construction in 1997.
Bruno was passionate about many facets of the community, including his church, his industry and the fine arts. He served his church with honor and humility and supported our community's church-based schools with an open mind, an open heart and an open pocketbook. He served as president of both the Little Flower Parent's Club and the Bishop Manogue Parent's Club. He served on the inaugural board of directors of Bishop Manogue Catholic High School. He received a Certificate of Appreciation for Outstanding Christian Service to the Church of the Little Flower Diocese of Reno on April 1, 2002. Bruno and Edna were recipients of the First Annual Award from St. Therese, the Little Flower Parish for service to the parish and school, and were named to the Bishop Manogue High School Hall of Fame in 2004.
Bruno had a natural sense for business. He served on the Reno Chamber of Commerce Board, the U.S. Interstate Commerce Commission and as an advisor to the U.S. Small Business Administration. He was committed to improving his trade, and held distinguished posts with Associated General Contractors, the Northern Concrete and Cement Association and the National Ready Mix Concrete Association. He also served on the boards of the University of Nevada Foundation, First Interstate Bank of Nevada and Saint Mary's Hospital. He received many business-related awards, including the 2002 Chairman's Award for Extraordinary Dedication to the National Ready Mix Association. He was honored as a University of Nevada, Reno Alumnus of the Year and was inducted into the Junior Achievement Business Leaders Hall of Fame. Bruno and Edna were jointly honored with the AGC SIR award in 1995 and received the Distinguished Nevadan award in 1991 from the University of Nevada, Reno.
Bruno had a special place in his heart for community-based music and arts. He appreciated musical and theatrical talent, both locally and around the world. He understood the importance of its presence in his community and had a strong desire to keep it alive and accessible. He served on the board of directors of the Reno Opera Guild Board and the Nevada Opera Advisory Board. Bruno and Edna received the Governor's Award for Distinguished Service to the Arts in 2002. The Bishop Manogue Catholic High School Fine Arts Building bears their name.
At the time of his death, Bruno was serving as a longtime adviser for the U.S. Military Academy Selections Committee, to which he was appointed by Sen. Harry Reid. Bruno loved serving on this committee, as it gave him the opportunity to meet the area's best and brightest high school seniors interested in attending one of our country's military academies. This appealed to Bruno's strong sense of patriotism and his interest in quality education. Bruno was also serving as an executive advisor to the Rafter 7 Sheep Ranch, and was a member of the Prospector's Club, the Italian Benevolent Society, Little Flower Parish, the University of Nevada Athletic Booster Club and Hidden Valley Country Club.
The Benna Family Foundation is a major contributor to the University of Nevada, Reno. The Edna and Bruno Benna Endowment for Excellence in the Arts sponsors visiting musical and theatrical artists at the University. Bruno and Edna are founding contributors to the Discovery Museum, the Nevada Opera, the Nevada Museum of Art, and the Reno Little Theater. They also sponsor endowments at Little Flower School and Bishop Manogue Catholic High School.
Bruno is survived by his widow, Edna; his four children, Stephen Benna (Karen), Cathleen Benna Trachok (Rick), Alexander Benna (Theresa), and Christopher Benna (Joy Ellen); his 12 grandchildren and one great-grandchild.
Memorial contributions are suggested to Bishop Manogue Catholic High School, 100 Bishop Manogue Drive, Reno, NV 89511; St. Therese Little Flower School, 875 East Plumb Lane, Reno, NV 89502; the Terry Lee Wells Nevada Discovery Museum, 490 Center Street, Reno, NV 89501; or the Nevada Museum of Art, 160 Liberty Street, Reno, NV 89501.
Lelan A. Ceccarelli ’55 (economics)
April 3, 2012—Sparks, Nev.
Lee Ceccarelli, 78, passed away in his home on April 3, 2012. Born in Sparks Sep. 11, 1933, to Mary and Aldo Ceccarelli, he was proud to be a third-generation Nevadan. Lee graduated from Sparks High School in 1951 and attended the University of Nevada, graduating with a degree in business in 1955. A star athlete from an early age, he was a three-sport letterman at Sparks High, going on to play baseball and basketball under coach Jake Lawlor at the University.
His success was not limited to the athletic field. For 20 years, Lee was a dedicated employee of the Shoshone Coca-Cola bottling company, rising to the position of sales manager. In 1971, he took an opportunity to move to a well-known local company, Andersen Dairy. He was a key part of the leadership team that helped build the company into Model Dairy, from which he retired after 25 years of service in 1996.
Lee was also involved in professional and community organizations. He was a longtime member of the Reno Lions club, and deeply involved in the Executive Association of Reno, where he was honored multiple times as Executive of the Year. His business style was one of work ethic, integrity and honoring commitments.
Lee's highest priority was always his familia. He married his high school sweetheart, Barbara Wright, in 1953, and the two have been inseparable for the past 58 years. Travel and friends have been a big part of their life, including cruises through the Caribbean, Panama Canal and Alaska. Lee and Barbara raised three boys Jeff, Mike, and Kevin, who inherited their father's passion for sports. He coached them all, and was a regular volunteer on the Little League circuit for more than a decade. In later years, as part of an annual road trip, the "boys" traveled to over 20 major league parks and stadiums to enjoy the camaraderie and time together. One of the most memorable was a visit to Yankee Stadium and visiting the top of the World Trade Center on Sep. 10, 2001.
Surrounded by boys his entire life, Lee's world changed with daughter-in-laws Rhonda and Cindy, who provided four granddaughters (Jessica, Angela, Megan, and Natalie). Taking after their grandpa, these young ladies were successful athletes in their own right, with Jessica and Angela excelling in basketball at Reno High and Megan and Natalie being outstanding softball players at Reed High. Grandpa rarely missed a game and was their biggest fan.
Lee Ceccarelli will be remembered as a valued friend, a compassionate and competitive man, a loving husband, father and grandfather, and a positive role model for all.
Lee is survived by his 97-year-old mother, Mary; his wife, Barbara; and his sons Jeff (Rhonda), Mike (Cindy) and Kevin; as well as his granddaughters.
Virginia S. Palmer ’55 (education)
March 2012—Reno, Nev.
Virginia Palmer passed away in March 2012. She was born Jan. 21, 1914. the last of nine children of Italian immigrants. She was raised in Eureka and was the first to go to school there, as her siblings had all gone to a rural one-room school. She graduated from White Pine High School in 1932, and was the first in her family to go to college. She attended the University of Nevada began her teaching career in Antelope Valley, Eastgate and Yerington. She began teaching at Mt. Rose Elementary School in 1942, and with her quick wit and steady, loving discipline, she instructed many Reno students who prospered and became future Nevada leaders.
Her prowess in the classroom is legendary, but with her retirement in 1976, she continued to give back to the community. She sought a four-year term on the Washoe County School Board. She walked her huge southwest Reno district in 1977, defeating three rivals in the primary and winning the seat. She claimed that walking door to door gave her a marvelous education. She was a quick learner and won a second term unopposed, and captured a huge margin on her third-term run. School discipline was on everyone's mind when she initially sought election and she soon won the respect not only of the public, but of fellow trustees and school administration with her attributes of honesty, caring and diligence. As she always did her homework and was prepared, she faced her critics, listened well, disagreed agreeably, often prevailed and always followed up when she promised she would.
Her trustee achievements are numerable, but she was most proud of her help in fighting the demolition of the historic Mt. Rose School. She and others fought hard for the restoration and it came to pass. She also battled for the establishment of Washoe's Development Center, where top-flight educators instruct teachers how to teach, and the establishment of an internship program for Washoe teachers at the University of Nevada, Reno. She was not only an advocate for women principals in the high schools, but also fought to have more counselors in the schools and was one of the leading allies in alternative education programs.
Through the years, she received many honors and awards. She was especially proud of the Virginia Palmer Elementary School, which opened in 1981 and was dedicated in her name in 1989. In her final illness, she was still conducting board meetings and thinking about her former students.
In addition to her teaching Virginia was an avid golfer.
She is survived by her niece, Irene Marich , and great-nieces Jacqueline Starkweather and Marjorie Uhalde. She appreciated her caregivers Elizabeth Mariscal and Elaine Serra, and other caregivers and many friends—too numerous to mention individually.
Donations in her memory can be sent to the Virginia Palmer Elementary School c/o principal Sue Parks: 5890 Klondike, Sun Valley NV 89433.
Donald L. Damon ’60 (electrical engineering)
April 3, 2012—El Cerrito, Calif.
Larry Damon passed away April 3, 2012, in El Cerrito, Calif. He was born and raised in Winnemucca, Nev., received a degree in electrical engineering from the University of Nevada, Reno, married Emily "Emmy" Hanf, and moved to the San Francisco Bay Area in 1960.
He was involved in the development of nuclear power plants at the Bechtel Corporation. After 35 years, he retired from Bechtel and was councilmember and mayor of El Cerrito. He was a member of the Masonic Lodge, Lions Club, Richmond Yacht Club, California Society of Professional Engineers and the National Society of Professional Engineers.
Larry was known to have a tough exterior, but a big, kind heart. He helped many people make positive changes in their lives, he adored children, and he was a wonderful grandfather whose last big act was designing and building a beautiful, wood swing set.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Ernest Damon and Marian Grauvogel; his wife Emily (Emmy) Hanf Damon; his brother Carl Grauvogel; and brother-in-law Keith Droegemeier.
Larry is survived by his brothers, Lyle Damon (Karen), Douglas Damon (Diana) and Dean Grauvogel (Janet); sisters Nancy Singley (Hank) and Bettie Tuttle (Lyle); sisters-in-law Anita Droegemeier and Laura Grauvogel; his children, Wendy Gallo (Rick) and Stuart Damon (Fadia); and grandchildren Alysse Gallo, Daniel Gallo, Sahara and Bradley Damon.
Donations may be made to the Alta Bates Summit Foundation, 2450 Ashby Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94705.
Cecilia A. (Clayton) Cluff ’61 (English)
Mar. 12, 2012—Shafter, Calif.
Cecilia passed away March 12, 2012. Cecilia was born Jan. 27, 1940, in Oakland, Calif., to Albert and Denez Clayton. She moved to Reno in grade school, graduating from Reno High School in 1957 and University of Nevada in 1961, with degrees in English and library science. She married Larry Cluff in 1961. Cecilia and Larry began their teaching careers in Kayenta, Ariz., on a Navajo reservation. After their daughter Lori was born, Cecilia became a stay-at-home mom. The family moved to Yerington, Nev., in 1969, where Larry taught art and daughter Rebecca (Becky) was born.
Cecilia, Larry and their daughters left Yerington in 1976 when Larry entered the ministry for the United Methodist Church. When the family moved to Ely in 1979, Cecilia returned to work as a librarian in the White Pine County Library. She later took the position of school librarian at White Pine Junior High. When Cecilia, Larry and Becky moved to Shafter, Calif., she continued her library career, working for Kern High School District. She also was very active in church, both in Shafter and Porterville, where they lived for five years. Cecilia and Larry returned to Shafter in 2001, where she resided the rest of her life. She was an active member of the Wasco United Methodist church at the time of her passing.
Cecilia is preceded in death by her parents and her husband, Larry. She is survived by daughters Rebecca Cluff of Shafter and Lori (Tom) Hatch of Reno; brother Richard Clayton of Reno; and grandchildren Emily and Celia Rodriguez of Shafter and Stephanie and Stephen Hatch of Reno.
Cecilia was known for her incredible kindness and gentleness. She was constantly generous to those who suffered misfortune. Her love and commitment toward her marriage and children was extraordinary. She was known for her passionate love of reading, genealogy, trivia and Nevada history.
In lieu of flowers the family asks that donations be made in Cecilia's memory to the Kern County Library system at kerncountylibrary.org.
Melinda M. (MacKie) Denton ’61 (business education)
March 5, 2012—Tiburon, Calif.
On March 5, 2012, Melinda M. Denton, 71, passed away at home in Tiburon, Calif. She battled PSP (a neurodegenerative brain disease) for the last few years.
Melinda Margot Mackie was born May 2, 1940, in Manhattan, N.Y. A 1961 graduate of the University of Nevada, Reno, Melinda was president of Gamma Phi Beta Sorority, a member of Cap & Scroll, Sagens and the AWS Judiciary Committee. She moved from Reno to San Francisco in 1963. She enjoyed a successful business career as a manager, director, vice president and consultant in the field of market research. Her major employers were Pacific Bell, Constat and Wells Fargo. She was an executive member of AMA, and taught marketing research classes at the University of California, Berkeley.
A resident of Tiburon for more than 40 years, Melinda enjoyed volunteering after retirement at the Belvedere Tiburon Landmark Society,where she was a docent at China Cabin. She also volunteered at the Tiburon Thrift Shop, and was an active member of Christ Episcopal Church in Sausalito, Calif. Travel was one of her hobbies, and she enjoyed visiting Hawaii, Australia, Tahiti, Europe, China, Russia, Turkey and other international destinations.
Melinda was a remarkable, exceptional and cherished lady who touched the lives of many people. She had many dear friends, too numerous to name, whom she cared about and who cared about her. Her caregivers were exceptionally dedicated to her.
She was preceded in death by her husband of 34 years, the Hon. Brian B. Denton; her mother, Louise Sheldon Mackie Schute, an international model; and her father, Richard Mackie, a movie star and BBC Executive who also used the surname of Fraser.
Melinda is survived by her daughter, Julie C. Denton of Sausalito, Calif; brother Gordon Fraser (Lynne) and brother-in-law Russell L. Denton (Joan) of Lebanon, Penn., and Holly Denton Tate (Bill) of Frisco, Texas.
Donations in Melinda's memory may be made to the CurePSP website or 30 E. Padonia Road, Suite 201, Timonium, MD 21093; Hospice By the Bay, 17 East Sir Francis Drake Blvd., Larkspur, CA 94939; or the Marin Humane Society, 171 Bel Marin Keys Blvd., Novato, CA 94949.
Harvey J. McKibben ’61 (accounting)
Mar. 29, 2012—Mesa, Ariz.
Harvey "Joe" McKibben died peacefully at his second residence "The Tindominium" in Mesa, Ariz., on March 29, 2012.
Joe was born February 1, 1936 in Alamosa, CO to Everett and Della (Kipp) McKibben. At age 2 the family moved to Northern Nevada and after living in Hawthorne, Silver City, Yerington, Smith Valley and Washoe Valley they settled down in Reno.
On November 26, 1958 he married the love of his life, Mary "Jane" Aufdermaur from Lovelock, NV and in March of 1962 they had their only child, Kip.
Joe attended Elementary School in Yerington and Northside Junior High. He was a graduate and standout basketball player at Reno High. He graduated from the University of Nevada, Reno with a B.S. in Business Administration.
Joe worked his entire career at SPPCo. (Nevada Energy) and after 35 years working his way up from the survey/map room through the accounting department he retired on August 1, 1989 as the company's Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer.
Joe was a member of the Knights of Columbus and Our Lady of the Snows. He was a past Board of Director of St. Mary's Hospital, a former officer with Junior Achievement, a former board member of the Kiwanis Club, and a former member of the Pacific Coast Gas Association.
He is survived by his wife of 53 years Jane, son Kip (Mimi), two grandsons Joseph and Jacob, brother Herb (Catherine), stepsister Judy Mick and numerous close relatives. His father Everett, mother Della, sister Mary Ann, brother David and stepfather John Sheesley preceded Joe in death.
In lieu of flowers, please send donations to the Women's and Children's Center of the Sierra (Diaper Bank) 255 W. Peckham Lane, Suite B, Reno, NV 89509.
Ivan C. Slotto ’67 (counseling and educational psychology)
Mar.16, 2012—Reno, Nev.
Ivan C. Slotto passed away peacefully on Friday, March 16, 2012. He was 86 years old. Ivan was born August 31, 1925 to Minnie and Ole Slotto in Fillmore, North Dakota. He was one of twelve brothers and sisters, all of whom predeceased him.
At a young age, Ivan knew the importance of education and left home to pursue his dream of a High School Diploma. He worked on local area farms in order to fulfill that dream. Ivan was drafted by the Army upon graduation in 1943 and joined the Paratroopers serving in France until the Wars end, when he was awarded the Purple Heart <http://www.legacy.com/memorial-sites/purple-heart/?personid=156589073&affiliateID=2254>.
After returning home, he attended college in Colorado where he earned his teaching degree. Ivan moved to Reno in 1950 for his first teaching position at Reno High School, where he taught Chemistry for seventeen years. He later achieved a Masters in Education and a Masters in Administration. Ivan left Reno High to go into administration at Wooster High School and Swope Middle School retiring in 1980, when he began his second career as a much sought after handyman.
Ivan met and married the love of his life, Sara in 1950 and was blessed with two children. He leaves behind his beloved wife Sara, son Andrew Slotto, daughter Jenice (By) Sprenger, granddaughter Corrie (Cecchi) Thomas, and great-grandson William Thomas. He will be sorely missed.
Richard K. Macauley ’68 (journalism)
May 3, 2012—Reno, Nev.
Richard Kenneth "Rick" Macauley passed away suddenly on May 3, 2012. Rick was born in Rochester, New York on August 18, 1946 to Lucille and Kenneth Macauley. The family moved to Las Vegas when he was six years old, and always considered it his home. He graduated from Las Vegas High School and the University of Nevada Reno majoring in journalism. While growing up in Las Vegas, Rick enjoyed scuba diving, fencing, martial arts and scouting where he received his Eagle Scout Award.
After a year long nationwide trip in his milk truck he joined the Army, became a decorated helicopter pilot, and served in the 3rd of the 17th Air Cavalry. As a result of his service, he wrote the book "Charley Horse: America's 'Day by Day' Air Cavalry, Vietnam War Correspondences.”
After his military service Rick returned to Las Vegas where he married Bonnie Ann Davis and adopted their wonderful son Skyler. At this time he was instrumental in funding the Ronald McDonald House, was an active member of the Las Vegas JCs, and started the Nifty Nickel newspaper. At this time he worked as a photographer/reporter for the Las Vegas Sun. Rick moved to Reno to pursue his life as an author and a teacher of grantsmanship. There he met his companion Mary Mingo. Rick was active in the Reno Air Race Foundation, the local Boy Scouts, EAA, and the Aviation and Aeronautics Advancement Alliance.
He is preceded in death by his father and mother. Surviving are his brother and sister-in-law, David and Connie Macauley, son and daughter-in-law, Skyler and Angela Macauley, all of Las Vegas and his companion, Mary Mingo of Reno.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Reno Air Race Foundation or to the local Boy Scouts of America area council.
Chris E. Harris ’71 (business)
May 7, 2012—Reno, Nev.
Chris passed away while undergoing cancer treatments in Los Angeles, California on May 7th at the age of 67 years. He was born in Oakland, California to Hazel Robuck Harris and Bart Harris.
Chris was a long time resident of Reno, graduating from Reno High School (1962) and the University of Nevada, Reno with a Bachelors of Science in Business (1971). Chris valued hard work. He served in the Nevada Air National Guard (1965) then began his working career at Warehouse Markets in the meat cutting department, working into supervisor and management positions at a young age.
Chris was a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Nevada (1972). He served on numerous local, state, and national Realtor Association committees (1977-2012). He is a past President of the Association of Realtors, local and state, and was awarded Realtor of the Year. Chris worked in real estate much of his life as a broker and owner of Keystone Realty and First Choice Realty 500.
Chris loved cars having a passion for drag racing (NHRA) and restoring classic cars. He enjoyed boating, fishing, RV traveling, spending time with his friends, family, and spoiling the grand kids. He lived his life giving service to others, volunteering for Junior Achievement, The Easter Seals Society, and serving in various church capacities as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Chris was a loyal husband, fathe, and a friend to all.
Chris is survived by Marva, his loving wife of 40 years; daughters, Dayna Wolf and Emily Francis (Tony); mother, Hazel (99 years); sisters, Judy Harris and Jeannie Blom; and 7 grandchildren, Bert, Dane, Carter, Harrison, Parker, Cash, and Gwen.
Donations may be made in his name to The Solace Tree, for grieving children, teens, and family, at P.O. Box 2944, Reno, NV 89505.
Donald J. Decker ’72M.S. (geology)
April 16, 2012—Bend, Ore.
Donald James Decker, after a short season of cancer, finished his earthly journey on April 16, 2012 to enter his heavenly home. He was born August 22, 1944 to Glenn and Elizabeth Decker of Corvallis, OR. He grew up on the family farm on Decker Road and was involved in 4H and Future Farmers of America throughout his school years. As a youth he attended a revival in Philomath, OR and accepted Christ as his Savior. This very important decision was a life changing event for him.
He attended local Corvallis schools and graduated from Oregon State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Geology. In 1968, he married Suzanne Whitney from Fortuna, CA. After graduation in 1969, they moved to Reno, NV where they attended University of Nevada. Don went to graduate school at MacKay School of Mines (now known as Mackay School of Earth Sciences and Engineering) where he earned his master's degree in Geology.
His geology career spanned the next 40 plus years in Nevada, Alaska, and Oregon where he searched for gold, silver, barite, and other precious metals. Over time he acquired many interesting and compelling mining properties. A gifted geologist and successful businessman, he developed his own mining related companies: Decker Exploration, Century Gold, LLC, Faith Land, Faith Land and Minerals, and participated in American Innovative Minerals, LLC.
After moving to Winnemucca, NV in 1973, he became the proud father of Russell (married to Lori), followed by Mary in 1977 (married to Dustin Baker), Amy in 1980 (married to Nathan Gillespie), and Matthew in 1984 (married to Melodie). Don often read to them and wore out Picture Bible as they were growing up. He loved each of his children so very much and was proud of the adults they have become. The family lived in various northeast Nevada locations before settling predominately in the Elko area. In 1986, he and his family built a home in Lamoille, NV. The Ruby Mountains were a wonderful view from their home and over the years he and his family enjoyed many outings there.
Don and his family relocated to Corvallis, OR in 1989. In 1991, he earned another master’s degree in Christian Leadership from Western Conservative Baptist Seminary in Portland, OR. He and Suzi moved back to Elko, NV in 1998.
Later, grandchildren came to delight his life as well - Jared, Emily, and Ethan Decker, Kase Baker, and Digeo Decker. As each grew, he was able to show them how to pan for gold as well as garnets from the Ruby Mountains and teach them basic geology. He loved playing games and wrestling with them.
His gift of giving was another source of joy for him. He encouraged many people to venture into short term mission work and supported many on long term missions in a variety of countries for his Savior and Lord. He was privileged to travel to Mongolia and China on short term mission trips with Campus Crusade for Life and Jesus Film Projects. He enjoyed giving to help build churches in various countries as well as funding education for future Christian leaders and workers through Multnomah University and various Christian schools in Oregon and Nevada.
He is survived by Suzi, his wife of 43 years, children, grandchildren, brothers Van Decker of Corvallis, OR and Everett Decker of Culver, OR, and their families.
In lieu of flowers, please donate in Don’s memory to:
- The JESUS Film Project, PO Box 628222, Orlando, FL 32862-8222
- Crown Financial Ministries, 1035 Old Peachtree Road NW, Lawrenceville, GA 30043-3309
- Young Life Foundation, P.O. Box 520, Colorado Springs, CO 80901-0520
- Spring Creek Christian Academy, 285 Spring Creek Parkway, Spring Creek, NV 89815
- Multnomah University, 8435 NE Glisan St., Portland, OR 97220
-Santiam Christian Schools, 7220 NE Arnold Avenue, Corvallis, OR 97330
Laura E. (Kersten) King ’75 (anthropology)
April 30, 2012—Chico, Calif.
Laura Elizabeth Kersten King was born on November 20, 1953 in Reno, Nevada. She passed away on April 30, 2012 in Chico, CA. Laura was preceded in death by her mother, Betty Campbell Kersten. She was greatly loved and will be missed by her husband, Guy of Chico, CA; daughter Mary, of Seattle, WA; father Earl W. Kersten; brother William Kersten (Phyllis Beverly); sister Ann Ebner (Greg); nieces Charlotte and Rosemary, all of Sparks, NV and brother-in- law, Tim (Christine) of Reno, NV.
Laura grew up and attended schools in Reno, graduating from the University of Nevada Reno in 1976 with a BA in Anthropology. At UNR she met her husband, Guy. Laura received her MA in Anthropology specializing in archaeology from the University of Arizona in 1978. Jobs and education took Guy and Laura to Salt Lake City, Utah; St. Louis, MO; Washington DC; and Albuquerque, NM where their daughter, Mary was born. They settled in Chico, CA in 1988.
Laura was a wonderful writer and put her skills to work as a technical writer and editor. She enjoyed her co-workers and having jobs where she could use her intelligence and skill to help the people with whom she worked. Laura was a devoted mother and loved being involved with Mary's school activities over the years ranging from Chico Co-Op Preschool to classroom aid to a Chico High Band Mom. She attended every single one of Mary's college music performances.
Laura loved the Nevada desert and mountains and she amazed her family by finding beautiful rocks, arrowhead points and flakes during hikes. Laura especially enjoyed Historic Williamsburg, VA, the northern Pacific coast, and the landscape, cultures and foods of the Southwest -she made the best tacos and green chili stew ever! Laura was a talented cook and flower, herb and vegetable gardener; she had an artist's eye in her home and garden. She was passionate about reading, learning, traveling, and enjoying life.
In lieu of flowers please consider making a donation in Laura's memory to one of the following:
The Jane Goodall Institute (http://www.janegoodall.org) or the (http://www.cancer.org) in care of Newton-Bracewell Chico Funeral Home.
Steven W. Griswold ’82 (social services corrections)
May 1, 2012—Sparks, Nev.
Steven William Griswold, born at Saint Mary's Hospital Nov. 7, 1955, died May 1, 2012.
Steven was a loving and generous participant in life. He was a devoted son, a spirited brother and friend, a role model of an uncle, a best friend and a loving supportive husband.
He worked at Saint Mary's as a medical social worker for 30 years. He gave generously of his time and spirit, well beyond his professional responsibilities. A third-generation Nevadan, he attended local schools including the University of Nevada, Reno, class of ’82, and completed a master’s degree in social work at New Mexico Highlands University in 1986.
He is preceded in death by his beloved wife, Billie Griswold, and his sister Susanne Griswold-Glew. He is survived by his parents Bill and Evelyn Griswold, his sisters Morlee Griswold and Gayle Calhoun, as well as nieces and nephews.
He was a great sportsman, the wildlife of Nevada can rest a little easier. He was a champion trap and clay target shooter.
As a board member of Reno Cancer Foundation, he would have appreciated donations to RCF at 1155 Mill Street, Reno NV89502
Mitchell E. Larson ’85MBA
March 8, 2012—Reno, Nev.
A 29-year resident of Reno, Mitch passsed away after a long battle with lung disease. He grew up in Big Bear City, CA and graduated from Big Bear High School. He earned a BA from UC Santa Barbara and a MBA from University of Nevada, Reno. He worked in computer sales and marketing and was an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.
He is preceded in death by his mother, Marjorie. He is survived by his loving wife, Michelle: daughters, Victoria and Marleena: sons, Jared and Nolan: his father and step-mother, Ed and Rebecca: 5 brothers, Ken, Darryl, Tim, Kevin, and Tom: 4 sisters, Becky, Christie, Debbie, and Sharon: and many, many nieces and nephews who adored and looked up to him.
Mitch loved spending time with his family and friends, watching movies, and talking politics. He had a wonderful sense of humor and a beautiful smile. He will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved him.
James P. Martin ’85 (accounting)
March 25, 2012—Washoe Valley, Nev.
Jim Martin, longtime resident of the Reno-Tahoe area, passed away unexpectedly Sunday, March 25th at his home in Washoe Valley. He was 53 years of age. Jim is survived by his wife, Kris, and son, Austin, as well as his mother, Trudi Martin, also of Washoe Valley, siblings Michael Martin, Larry Martin, Mary McAllister, Judith Schraut, and Jane Martin, and numerous nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends. He graduated from George Whittell High School in Zephyr Cove in 1976 and from UNR in 1985.
Jim was known for his tenacity, his strong work ethic and principled business practices. He was a self-made businessman who always rolled with the punches and let no business remain unfinished. Jim had a big laugh and an even bigger heart. He was a kind and gentle soul and valued family and friends above all. Jim's family loved being with him outdoors, boating, hiking, camping, and cutting down his annual Christmas tree. He moved so freely, so fast and so happily. His energy was contagious.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Reno-Sparks Gospel Mission (P.O. Box 5956
Reno, NV 89513 or <http://rsgm.org/>) or the (<http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/>).
Sharon M. (Nelson) Meade ’85 (nursing)
April 14, 2012—Yuma, Ariz.
Sharon Meade died on her birthday April 14, 2012 in Yuma, Arizona of Alzheimer's. She was born in Reno on April 14, 1936 to Henry and Mildred Nelson. At the age of 2 the family moved to Tonopah, and she graduated as valedictorian from Tonopah High School in 1954. She received nursing degrees from Sacramento City College and University of Nevada Reno. She moved to Elko in 1972 and was a RN and Family Nurse Practitioner working at Elko General Hospital, Wells Clinic, Nevada Home Health Service and Head Start retiring in 1998.
She is survived by her husband Dick; son Mike (Sue) Meade of Spring Creek; daughter Rene'e (Greg) Weathers of Allen, Texas; grandchildren Bevan Meade of Reno, Shelby Meade of Reno and Brandon Weathers of Logan, Utah; sister Karen (David) Goddard, brother Steve Nelson of Las Vegas; and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
Jeffrey E. Heath ’88 (biology)
April 2, 2012—Reno, Nev.
Jeffrey Earl Heath died at his residence on April 2, 2012 with his wife and children by his side due to complications of an earlier illness from March, 2009.
Jeff was born November 1, 1965 to Donald Wayne Heath and Barbara Beesley Heath at William Beaumont Hospital in El Paso, Texas. Although born in El Paso, Jeff was baptized at Trinity Episcopal Church in 1966 and belonged to Saint Stephens Episcopal Church for many years. Jeff attended Hunter Lake Elementary, Swope Junior High School and Reno High School graduating in 1983. He went on to attend the University of Nevada Reno, graduating with a Bachelor's Degree in Science in 1988. While a student at Nevada, Jeff was elected to the Student Senate and was President of Lambda Chi Alpha Fraternity. He was also a member of the esteemed Coffin & Keys society. He later graduated from Lewis and Clark Law School in Portland, Oregon then returned to Reno and eventually owned a successful bankruptcy law practice until the time of his illness.
Jeff was predeceased by his paternal grandparents Earl Charles Heath and Violet Susich Heath, maternal grandparents Edward Maurice Beesley and Audrey Maymon Beesley, and brother Robert Goss. He is survived by his wife, Kathleen, daughters Marisa, Karynna (Will), son Tommy, daughter Victoria and son Bobby. He is further survived by his parents Donald Heath (Laurie) and Barbara Goss (Hal), brother Chris Heath (Christina), sister Jill Velazquez (Salvador), brothers Michele Heath (Kaye, fiancée), Adam Heath and Jason Heath, sisters Kate (Matt) and Alice, brothers Patrick (Angie) and Vincent. Surviving uncles and aunts include Dale (Jeanne) Heath, Maurice Beesley, Norman Beesley (Jill) and Nanette Brown. Cousins are Eden (Matthew, fiancé), Kim, Kellee, Riegan and Byron. Nieces and nephews include Lexi, Jacqueline, Nicholas and Elena.
Jeff lived his life with love, decency, kindness and was beloved and respected by all that knew him. He was at his best in his treasured role as father. His five children could not have asked for a better nor more loving dad. Incredibly bright and funny, he was as fair a man as we have ever known.
George E. Fry ’91 (electrical engineering), ’98MBA
Apr. 16, 2012—Reno, Nev.
George is survived by the love of his life, Tina Kinsey, his beloved Children: Raegan, Emily & Nicky; His parents, George and Connie Fry; sisters: Rebecca, Gail, & Mary; & Nephews: Jack, Patrick, & Jeremy. George attended Claremont and Carson City High Schools. He was a standout tennis player. George attended Claremont Mckenna College and UNR, and received the EE degree. He also received an MBA from UNR.
In 1977 George joined the Army. A member of the Black Horse Armored Cavalry Regiment, he commanded a Bradley Troop Carrier. He was stationed along the border between East and West Germany. While on duty President Reagan called his unit on Christmas Eve to thank them for their service. His team also won the Prestigious Boeschlager military competition.
After honorary discharge George worked for Life Touch and went to work for IGT in 1996. He was a lead engineer for much of his 16 yr. tenure He left IGT in 2011.
To him family life was very important. They enjoyed water skiing at Lahonton, house boating at Shasta, and a trip Disney Land. To honor George's memory give to AA or Betty Ford's Center.
Trinda L. (Choquette) McDaniel ’91 (social work)
April 17, 2012—Sparks, Nev.
Trinda passed away peacefully at Saint Mary's hospital with her loving husband, Joe by her side, on April 17, 2012, due to complications from cancer. Trinda was born April 16, 1965, in Reno. She graduated from the University of Nevada, Reno in 1991 with a Bachelor of Arts degree and received her Human Resources Management Certification in 1998. Trinda married Joe McDaniel on September 21, 1996 at St. Luke's Lutheran church. She was the Human Resources Manager at Covance in Reno, NV.
Trinda was preceded in death by her mother and father. She is survived by her husband and step son Justin McDaniel of Sparks, NV; sister Renee Moore (Dennis) of Stagecoach NV; and many family and friends.
Trinda enjoyed camping, traveling and working in her yard. Her generous spirit and contagious laugh will be missed by all who knew her.
Cassidy D. Williams ’94 (general studies)
Mar. 8, 2012—Schurz, Nev.
Cassidy (Chad) Williams, 48, passed away March 8, 2012, at Carson Tahoe Hospital. Chad was born in Schurz, NV on Nov. 28, 1963 the son of Alvery Dale and Darlene Williams. He graduated from the UNR. Chad married Marla L. McDade on Dec. 19, 1992 in Lee, Nev. Chad was an avid hunter and fisherman. He was an athlete having played baseball, basketball, football and softball, he also was a boxer, and most recently was playing golf. He shared special times with his uncles and their race cars, which fostered in him an enthusiasm for modifying whatever vehicle he had in one way or another.
He was a rancher, rode saddle bronc and did some team roping. His family was the most important thing to him and he was proud of his daughter and his niece and nephew. Chad was the Tribal Liaison for the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services and also served as the Chairman of the Statewide Native American Coalition.
He was a past chairman of the Walker River Paiute Tribe and the National Tribal Enviromental Council where he was very proud of his work for Native American Tribes. The job that he most cherished while he worked for the Tribe was that of Fisheries Coordinator/Game Warden. He is survived by his wife, Marla; his daughter, Sydney Williams; his sister, Kimberly and her husband Donnie Quintero; his nephew, Jeremy Means and Niece, Karmen Quintero; and his Father, Alvery Williams.
Michael T. Johanns ’95 (finance)
Feb. 20, 2012—Reno, Nev.
Michael Theodor Johanns, 39, passed away Feb. 20, 2012. Michael was born in San Francisco, on May 28, 1972. He spent his youth growing up in Incline Village, then moved to Reno after high school and graduated from UNR. He was employed by Muzea Consultants. He is survived by his loving wife Jaime Johanns, 3 month old son Benjamin Johanns, mother in law Sharon Clanton, his parents Ted and Ingrid Johanns, brothers Klaus and Tom.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made for Benjamin Johanns: Fidelity Investments, Acct #: 39900001 618669687, Routing #: 101 205 681
Jessica M. Smith ’07 (interior design)
May 8, 2012—Reno, Nev.
Jessica May Smith passed away peacefully at her home in Reno, Nevada May 8th. She was born in Grass Valley and moved to Las Vegas to attend high school. She was awarded a scholarship to attend the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. She later transferred to the University of Nevada in Reno where she earned a bachelor's degree in interior decorating. She had a long time love for music and art and was involved in promoting several events in Reno Nevada. She is survived by her mother Susan Buehler, father Stan Smith and Brother Ben Smith and her grandparents.
Jacqueline F. Gartrell-Lane ’09 (psychology)
Dec. 16, 2010—Reno, Nev.
Jacqueline unexpectedly passed away at her Reno home on Dec. 16, 2010. She was 25. She had just celebrated her son’s second birthday, Dec. 13, 2010, and married Ronald Mac Lane on Aug. 21, 2010.
She was born Nov. 2, 1985, in Arlington, Texas, to Fred and Marla Gartrell. She attended Oakridge School before moving to northern Nevada in 1992. She attended Incline Elementary, Sage Ridge School and graduated from Galena High School, attended Super Camp as a student and junior counselor and attended the University of Nevada, Reno receiving the Millennium Scholarship.
Jacqueline at an early age played the violin, piano; was a member of the choir, ski, and golf teams/varsity clubs at both Sage Ridge and Galena. She enjoyed Lake Tahoe, where she loved to swim, boat and ice skate. She loved children, working as a nanny while going to school.
After graduating from the University, she planned on returning to school to receive a Masters Degree in Psychology, and eventually have a private practice. She was a volunteer at the Crisis Call Center and had been an avid spokesperson for the Epilepsy Foundation.She is survived by her Grandparent’s, Donald and Elizabeth Berry (Denver, Colorado), her parents, Fred and Marla Gartrell, her son, Camden Lane, husband Ron Lane, of Reno, sister’s Monica Ratliff and Stacey Gartrell-Mecca, brother Fred Gartrell, Jr., her aunt, Gina Berry and cousin’s, Ross Williams, (DFW, Texas), Rachel and Rebecca Robins (Denver, Colorado).