• ‘Driller’s helper’
OAKHURST – Juanita Pearl Bannon passed away at her home with the presence
of her family on March 14.
At Mrs. Bannon’s request, no services were held. Inurn-ment is at Oakhill
Dearly beloved wife of 50 years to her husband, Walt, Mrs. Bannon was
the loving and devoted mother of Sunny Duncanson, Oakhurst; Tracey Bannon
Cullen, Sacramento; and Dwight Bannon, Ashland, Oregon. She was the mother-in-law
of Russell Duncanson and Joy Bannon.
Mrs. Bannon was the proud grandmother of Sallie, Brian, Kelsey, Christopher,
Kristen, Tim, Kai, Trevor, Amanda and Michelle. She was the great-grandmother
The only child of William and Sallie Creech, Juanita was born February
1, 1922, in Lindsey, Oklahoma. That same year the Creeches traveled with
their infant daughter, first by covered wagon, then by Model T, to California.
They settled in Pixley.
As Juanita’s parents worked in farming, she grew up a happy and social
child. She attended Delano High School, where her world revolved around
friends, sports, skating and dance. Juanita loved to dance the jitterbug.
She won many local contests, and after graduation she supplemented her
income by winning prize money.
Juanita worked in various jobs until she met and married her lifetime
partner, Walt Bannon, in 1947.
The Bannons moved to the Mountain Area in the early 1950s, where their
water well drilling business began to flourish. Juanita was not only the
homemaker, bookkeeper and main referee of three young children, but also
for many years was the "driller’s helper," the person who followed the
rig from job to job to give the driller, Walt, a ride home.
As her children grew into high school age, there were countless hours
spent on the road from Catheys Valley to Mariposa for sports, drama and
cheerleading practice. Mrs. Bannon was active in the Soroptimist Club,
Parent-Teacher Association and she served as a member of the Mariposa County
In the early 1970s, Juanita and Walt moved to Oakhurst, which was a
more central area for their business. Juanita worked full time in the office
along Highway 41. She was also devoted to her mother, Sallie, and took
loving care of her during Sallie’s last years.
In 1982, Juanita and Walt retired from the business they built. It
is now owned and operated by their daughter Sunny and her husband Russell.
The Bannons didn’t slow down in retirement. They had their motorhome
and they traveled. Together, with friends and family, they had many fond
and happy memories.
Juanita was known for her cheerfulness, humor, charm and wit. Even
in her darkest hours, the twinkle of her blue eyes never dimmed. She will
be greatly missed by her family and friends.
As Walt said recently, "She was one-in-a-million, that girl!"
• YHS custodian
COARSEGOLD – Kenneth Herman Hoskins, 44, a custodian at Yosemite High
School, died in Fresno on March 20.
A memorial service will be held Friday [March 27], 5 p.m., at Yosemite
Lakes Community Church.
Mr. Hoskins was born in Fresno on March 4, 1954.
He had been a custodian at Yosemite High School.
He enjoyed horseback riding, gold panning, and leather work. Mr. Hoskins
also played guitar and sang country-western music.
He was the husband of Tammy Hoskins and the father of Justin David
Hoskins and Ashley Learee Hoskins.
He was the son of Bert Hoskins and Beverly Hoskins of Fresno.
Mr. Hoskins was the brother of Robert Hoskins and John Hoskins, Fresno;
Bonnie Costales and Suzanne Hutchins, Madera; and of Phyllis Odenwelder,
Also surviving are aunts Barbara Jones and Doris Davis, North Fork;
Gloria Garland, Woodlake; and Kay Vanderlans, Lodi.
Arrangements are under the direction of the Neptune Society of Central
• Business owner
OAKHURST – Lindsay Brown Aitken, 67, owner of Joint Ventures Industrial
for 20 years and a resident here for the past seven years, died April 2.
No services are scheduled.
Mr. Aitken was born in Glasgow, Scotland.
He loved fly fishing, gardening and computers and was a member of the
Mountain Area radio amateurs group. Mr. Aitken was a director for the Scottish
He will be greatly missed by his family and friends.
Mr. Aitken leaves his wife of 15 years, Cheryl Aitken of Oakhurst.
He was the father of Simon Aitken, Laguna Beach; and Robert Aitken,
Leslie Aitken and Cameron Aitken, all of Edinburgh, Scotland.
He was the grandfather of Samantha, Emily, Guy, Niel-son, Debbie and
Arrangements were handled by Sierra Funeral Chapel. 4-9-98
• Retired well driller
OAKHURST – Walt Bannon, 82, founder of Walt Bannon Well Drilling, died
He operated the company from 1936 until his retirement.
There will be an informal memorial for Walt and Juanita at the Bannon
family residence on Friday [April 9] from 1-4 p.m. Friends are invited
He was preceded in death by his wife of 50 years, Juanita, who died
Mr. Bannon was the beloved father of Sunny Duncanson, Oakhurst; Tracey
Bannon Cullen, w and Dwight Bannon, Ashland, Oregon. He was the father-in-law
of Russell Duncanson and Joy Bannon.
He was grandpa to Kristen, Tim, Kelsey, Chris, Kai, Trevor, Brian,
Sallie, Michelle and Amanda. He was the great-grandfather of three.
Mr. Bannon was known for his quiet ways, his strong character and his
devotion to his wife, Juanita. 4-9-98
• Retired entomoligist
RAYMOND – George Wind-wood Beards died at his sister’s ranch near Raymond
on February 22. He was 68.
Private memorial services will be held in June on the ranch for the
Mr. Beards was born November 24, 1930, in Ely, Nevada.
He attended Brown Military Academy and Occidental Co-llege in Southern
California. After graduation, he attended officers candidate school in
the East and joined the Navy as a second lieutenant during the Korean War.
He was assigned to the USS Hollister and served as chief gunnery officer
during China and Korean service.
After his discharge from the Navy, he attended University of California
at Los Angeles for a year and then transferred to UC Davis, where he received
his doctor of philosophy degree in entomology. He practiced for more than
30 years in Califor-nia, Idaho and New Jersey. He resided in Pleasanton
for more than 30 years.
He enjoyed stream and ocean fishing and 4-wheeling on the ranch.
Surviving are his daughter, Carol Conrad of Davis, and his won, Warren
Beards of Ellensburg, Washington. He remained friends with his divorced
wife, Robin Beards, who resides in Davis. His sister, Lee Brooke Combs,
resides on a ranch near Raymond. 4-9-98
AHWAHNEE – Jewell L. Calabrese, 75, died on March 18.
No services were held.
Mrs. Calabrese was the wife of Mike Calabrese of Ahwahnee and the mother
of Judy Harris of Ahwahnee and Janet Rodriguez.
Also surviving are four grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.
Charles Girard Jr.
AHWAHNEE – Charles E. Girard Jr., 83, died April 1.
Memorial services were held at Our Lady of the Sierra in Oakhurst on
Mr. Girard was the husband of Dorothy Girard, Ahwahnee. He was the
father of Lisa McKee, Oakhurst; Denise Bausch, Coarsegold; and Kathleen
Girard, San Diego. He was the stepfather of Judy Girard, San Diego.
Also surviving are his three sisters, his brother and three grandchildren.
Remembrances: Hospice of Madera County, 115 North P Street, Madera
• Retired mill worker
AHWAHNEE – "Beloved husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather"
are fitting descriptions for James Hobbs, who died March 28.
Memorial services were held at Sierra Funeral Chapel on March 31.
A resident of Ahwahnee for 31 years, Mr. Hobbs was a warm and friendly
person who enjoyed the friendship of many.
Mr. Hobbs served in the U.S. Army and later worked at the sawmill in
Oakhurst, long before the days of the Old Mill Village shopping center.
He enjoyed Go-Karting and fishing and had a real enthusiasm for motorcycles.
Mr. Hobbs and his wife, Gloria, were married for 48 years. He was the
father of Dwayne and Jeff.
Mr. Hobbs was the grandfather of Shane, Sheri, Michelle, Lisa, Brandy
and Brittany and was the great-grandfather of Skye and Felicia.
Also surviving are 153 nieces and nephews. 4-9-98
MARIPOSA – Dorothy L. Vannoy, 68, died March 30.
No services were scheduled. Arrangements are under the direction of
Sierra Funeral Chapel of Oakhurst.
Mrs. Vannoy was born in Nacogdoches, Texas. She loved gardening, cooking
and she was an accomplished musician on piano and organ. She was always
willing to lend a helping hand, no matter who you were.
Mrs. Vannoy was the wife of Elwin J. Vannoy, Mariposa. She was the
mother of Linda Thompson, Mariposa; and James Ely, Sacramento.
Mrs. Vannoy was the sister of Ruth Hower, Mariposa.
Also surviving are five grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.
• Retired dairyman
OAKHURST – Joseph Elmer Wight died March 27 at a Fresno hospital.
A private memorial service will be held by the family. Final arrangements
are under the direction of the Neptune Society.
Mr. Wight was a retired dairyman from Virginia who came to Oakhurst
22 years ago.
He enjoyed bowling in both senior leagues at Sierra Lanes for the past
nine years and researching the Wight family genealogy.
He served as a radio operator-mechanic with the U.S. Army during World
War II and was a disabled veteran.
Mr. Wight is survived by his adopted children, David and Brenda, and
by his partner of 28 years, Addie Mae Harper. 4-9-98
• Raley’s employee
AHWAHNEE – Brent Darin Freed passed away on April 8 at the age of 21.
Services were held on Wednesday at Sierra Vista Presbyterian Church.
His final resting place is Oakhill Cemetery in Oakhurst.
Brent was a loving son, awesome brother, and a true friend.
Brent was born on October 25, 1976, in Fountain Valley. He grew up
in the community of Ahwahnee and graduated from Yosemite High School in
Brent attended California State University, Fresno, Fres-no City College
and Kings River Community College.
Brent was employed at Raley’s Supermarket in Oakhurst.
Brent is survived by his parents, Bill and Stephanie; his brother Dean;
and his sisters Leslie, Brooke and Stacie.
Brent was a fun-loving young man. He always brought good cheer and
laughter to his family.
His charming personality and ever-present smile allowed him to make
friends wherever he went. He was always on the go but never far from home.
Brent will remain in our hearts forever and will be missed immensely
by family and dear friends alike. 4-16-98
SAN BERNARDINO – Carrie DePuy Glass, 93, died here on April 10 after
a long illness.
Mrs. Glass will be laid to rest alongside her husband Roy Glass at
Oakhill Cemetery in Oakhurst on Thursday [April 16], at 2 p.m.
Mrs. Glass was born in Mincy, Taney County, Missouri, on April 26,
She was the mother of Henry LeRoy Glass of Oakhurst and Mary Alice
Reeder of San Bernardino. Also surviving are her nine grandchildren, 14
great-grandchildren and two great-great-grandchildren.
Roy and Carrie came to Oakhurst in 1959 after Roy’s retirement from
Southern California Edison Company. Carrie had been a member of the Coarsegold
Grandmother’s Club. 4-16-98
BASS LAKE – Alma K. Henricksen, 84, died April 9.
Services were held Wednesday at Little Church in the Pines. A private
family burial will be on Monday [April 20] at Green Hills Memorial Park.
Arrangements are under the direction of Sierra Funeral Chapel of Oakhurst.
Mrs. Henrickson was born in Iowa on September 8, 1913.
She was an extremely good painter and won special honors for her art.
She loved crafts, knitting and crocheting, was an excellent seamstress,
wonderful cook and she especially loved gardening.
Mrs. Henrickson will be greatly missed by her family and friends. She
was a wonderful, loving mother and a kind and gentle person.
She is survived by her daughter, Sally McDonald and Bob, Bass Lake;
and by her son, Robert Henricksen, Issaquah, Washington.
Also surviving are her brother, Kenneth Anderson, Oregon; and her loving
grandchildren – Kristie Blea, Oak-hurst; Brad McDonald, Bass Lake; and
Erik, Danny and Melissa Henricksen, Issaquah; and by five great-grandchildren.
• Retired school clerk
COARSEGOLD – Georgia McPherson, 79, born in Rog-ers, Arkansas, on April
1, 1919, died on the same date in 1998.
She graduated from the Chetopa, Kansas, High School, where she was
class treasurer. She attended Pittsburg Teachers College in Pitts-burg,
Kansas, and Northeast Oklahoma Business College in Miami.
She was past president of Kappa Theta chapter of Epsilon Sigma Alpha
Sorority of Fresno. She was past guardian secretary of Jobs Daughters Bethel
She belonged to Daughters of the Nile, Fresno; and was a member of
Daughters of the American Revolution Lake of the Cherokee chapter in Miami,
She was a member of the Presbyterian Church in Bakersfield.
Mrs. McPherson was an attendance and records clerk for Fresno City
Schools for 16 years.
She is survived by her loving husband of 56 years, Fred, and by her
daughters and sons-in-law, Margie and Dean Ricken, Marilyn and Tom Avakian,
and Nancy McPherson.
She has nine beloved grandchildren, Lori Paris; Brooks Ricken; Melissa
Brown; Tommy, Todd and Billy Avakian; Blake Ricken; Sarah Buckenberger;
and Samantha Avakian. She has four great-grandchildren whom she adored.
She was the sister of Grace Beauchamp, Miami, Oklahoma.
Mrs. McPherson was a kind, compassionate lady who always found the
goodness in others and nurtured that in her family and friends. She always
had a kind word and a smile, never a complaint. She was sometimes shy and
reserved, but always alert to others who needed a friend to stand beside
BASS LAKE – Lois William-son, 81, died on April 11.
A private family service will be held at Oakhill Cemetery.
The family invites friends to an open house in honor of Mrs. Williamson
at their Bass Lake residence on Friday [April 17], starting at 1 p.m.
Arrangements are under the direction of Sierra Funeral Chapel of Oakhurst.
FRESNO – Former Coarse-gold resident Lucille Dorene Malcolm, 62, died
here on April 14.
Services were held Monday in Fresno. Graveside services followed
at Oakhill Cemetery in Oakhurst. Ar-rangements are under the direction
of Buchheim Family Palm-Colonial Chapel of Fresno.
Mrs. Malcolm was born in Padadena on January 30, 1936.
She was the mother of William Richard Malcolm Jr., Oakhurst; David
Boyce Malcolm, Coarsegold; Daniel Joseph Malcolm, Clovis; Linda Lucille
Malcolm, Firebaugh; and Nancy Ellen Koretoff, Fresno.
She was the daughter of Lucille Kellett, Fresno; and was the sister
of Verlane Blake, Parker Dam, Arizona.
Mrs. Malcolm was preceded in death by her husband, William Richard
She was the grandmother of Tommy, Monica, Corina, Adam, Danny, Matthew,
Natalia, William, Hyrum and Simin.
Remembrances: L.D.S. Missonary Fund, attention Bishop Terry Stout,
685 West Vartikian, Clovis 93612. 4-23-98
James C. Best
OAKHURST – James C. Best, a general contractor who resided here for
31 years, died Thursday at the age of 65.
He will be missed by all who knew him.
Graveside services were held Tuesday at Oakhill Cemetery. Arrangements
were under the direction of Sierra Funeral Chapel.
Mr. Best was the husband of Erna Best of Oakhurst.
He was the father of Warren Best and wife Roni of Oakhurst and grandfather
of Deja and Sabryna; and the father of Theresa Best of Mariposa and grandfather
of Justin, Paul and Marena. 4-30-98
• Registered nurse
COARSEGOLD – Verna Kathryn Johnson, beloved mother and grandmother
and a registered nurse for many years, died on April 25.
Family and friends will hold a "celebration of life" on Saturday [May
2], 11 a.m., at the family home in Coarsegold.
Born June 20, 1916, in White Earth, North Dakota, Mrs. Johnson died
unexpectedly after a brief illness.
She graduated from the University of Minnesota in 1943 with a bachelor
of science degree in nursing. She continued her education at the University
of California at Berkeley, at San Diego, and at California State University
of Fresno, San Jose and the College of Pacific.
Throughout her career, Mrs. Johnson worked as a registered nurse, public
health and school nurse. After retiring from Madera School District with
20 years service, Mrs. Johnson continued to work as a registered nurse
for various local facilities.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Clarence.
She is survived by their children, Greg of Rescue, Gifford of Carmichael,
Brent of Reno and Tina Hartley of Glen Ellen, Illinois.
She was the grandmother of Karen, Allison, Laurin, Clarice, Victoria,
Natalie and Dane. 4-30-98
YOSEMITE LAKES PARK – Fay McAdams, a resident here for the past two
years, died at home on April 21. She was 91.
Services were held Monday at Yosemite Lakes Community Church, where
she was a member, followed by burial at Oakhill Cemetery in Oakhurst. Arrangements
were under the direction of Jay Chapel of Madera.
Mrs. McAdams was born in Kane, Illinois. She had resided in Illinois
all of her life until coming to Yosemite Lakes Park.
She was the mother of Audrey Ashlock, YLP; Sharon Garbott, Fresno;
Helen Welch, Sebring, Florida; Remthem E. McAdams and E. Leroy McAdams,
both of Manito, Illinois.
Mrs. McAdams was the sister of Harry Burch and May Freand, both of
Also surviving are 22 grandchildren, 54 great-grandchildren and six
Remembrances: Hospice of Madera, Inc., Post Office Box 1325, Madera
Juene R. Gallison Weilburg
TURLOCK – Juene Rose Gallison Weilburg, who had maintained a home at
Bass Lake for 35 years, died at her Turlock home on April 15.
A memorial service will be held Saturday [May 2] at Monte Vista Chapel’s
Warner Johnson Travertine Hall in Turlock. Allen Mortuary is in charge
Mrs. Weilburg was a native of Turlock. She resided in Turlock for 40
years, but also had the Bass Lake home and resided at Bass Lake between
She was a homemaker. She also once owned the Gustine-Newman Floral
Shop. She was a member of the Turlock Antique Club.
Mrs. Weilburg is survived by her husband, Robert C. Weilburg of Turlock.
She was the mother of Sue Morrow, North Fork; Kath-leen Soernsen, Merced;
Joanell Stewart, Pleasanton; and Daniel Wayne Gallison, Sonoma.
She was the sister of Bill Henderson, Turlock; and Mae O’Neill, Santa
Also surviving are eight grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her first husband, Wayne Gallison, and
by her grandson, Steven Stewart. 4-30-98