Miscellaneous Orange County, California Obituaries
2001

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June 7
Mary Joanne Erchul
Irvine resident Mary Joanne Erchul died May 15 at Lakeview Kaiser Permanente Hospital in Anaheim. She died of pneumonia secondary to a brain tumor that was diagnosed in March. She was 72.
Mrs. Erchul was born Mary Joanne Brown on Jan.6, 1929, in Morris, a small town in northern Minnesota. She graduated from high school in Ely, Minn. While attending college she met Benedict M. Erchul at a dance. They married July 15, 1950, in Ely.
They made their home in Virginia, Minn., with Mr. Erchul working for an artificial limb company. The couple had seven children and Mrs. Erchul had her hands full raising them. 
In 1967 the company transferred Mr. Erchul to Southern California and the family settled in La Crescenta. Mr. Erchul eventually worked as an electrician with the Los Angeles County Road Department. The children grew up in La Crescenta. After he retired, Mr. and Mrs. Erchul moved about 1990 to Northwood in Irvine.
While living in La Crescenta, the Erchuls had a busy social life with the Elks Club and still had many friends from that area when she died. They liked camping and traveled often in their motor home, said their daughter, Patricia Johnson. Every other year they drove their motor home to Minnesota to visit friends and relatives. They also drove frequently to visit their grown children, several living in Northern California. 
Mrs. Erchul had the gift of hospitality, said her daughter, and enjoyed small scale entertaining in the couple's home although she was not a particularly outgoing person. She was known as a good cook and enjoyed it. 
Her passions included sewing, knitting and reading. She especially liked reading novels, sagas, crime mysteries and romance fiction. She and her husband also enjoyed working out at Family Fitness three or four days a week.
Mrs. Erchul's faith was important to her all her life, said her daughter. They regularly attended St. John Neumann Catholic Church and then St. Thomas More Catholic Church, both in Irvine.
A Mass was celebrated in her honor May 19 at St. Thomas More Church. The Rev. John Janze presided. Her ashes were scattered at sea.
Mrs. Erchul is survived by her husband, Benedict M. Erchul of Irvine; her son and daughter-in-law, Dan and Mary Erchul of Rochester, Minn.; her sons, Paul Erchul of Antioch and Ben Erchul of San Luis Obispo; her daughters and sons-in-law, Patricia and Gregory Johnson of Huntington Beach and Elizabeth Erchul and Richard Milcov of San Bruno; her daughters, Katherine Erchul of Santa Clarita and Mary Erchul of Santa Cruz; her sister, Vera Peters of St. Paul, Minn.; and four grandchildren, Niles Wigley of Utah, Cheryl Erchul of Colorado and Olivia and Meredith Johnson, both of Huntington Beach. 

Irene Julia Miller
Irvine resident Irene Julia Miller died June 1 at Flagship Convalescent Hospital in Newport Beach. She had suffered a stroke after surgery several months ago. She was 83.
She was born Irene Julia Stutz on Sept. 20, 1917, in Massena, N.Y. When she was still a toddler, the family moved to Elyria, Ohio, where she grew up the only girl in the family with three older brothers. Her mother died when she was 14. She graduated from high school in Elyria and then took a business course. She worked for a time with a florist arranging flowers, which she enjoyed, according to her daughter, Karen Mika.
She married Richard Miller May 29, 1940, in Elyria and they made their home there. They owned a nursery. They had three children and Mrs. Miller worked as a homemaker.
In her spare time she enjoyed golf and bowling and bowled with a team in Ohio. She was also an active member of the Eastern Stars. She and her husband enjoyed dancing with a Cotillion Club at a country club in Elyria.
The Millers moved to the Groves Mobile Home Park in Northwood after he retired. Mrs. Miller participated in many activities at the Groves, including lawn bowling and a number of committees.
She enjoyed her life at the Groves, said her daughter.
Mrs. Miller was a quiet person but had compassion and volunteered to help everyone, said her daughter. 
"She was strong too, but you might not have known it because she always stayed in the background," she added.
She was known as a good cook and also loved to read.
Mrs. Miller and her husband were 30-year members of the First Congregational Church in Elyria. Mrs. Miller was an active member and taught Sunday school for many years.
Services were planned for June 6 at the Groves with family friend the Rev. Keith Ackman presiding. Burial was planned for Riverside National Cemetery, Riverside.
Mrs. Miller was predeceased in 1999 by her son, William Miller of Newport Beach. She is survived by her husband Richard Miller of Irvine; her daughter, Karen Miko of Laguna Niguel; her son, Charles Miller of Lake Forest; seven grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

Les Lawrence Grasselli
Longtime Irvine resident Les Lawrence Grasselli died June 4 at a nursing home in Costa Mesa. He was 57 and had battled cancer since September.
Graveside services will be held Friday, June 8, at 11 a.m. at Riverside National Cemetery, Riverside.
Mr. Grasselli was born July 30, 1943, in Kingman, Ariz. He graduated from high school in Los Angeles and earned a degree in business administration from Cal Poly Pomona. He joined the U.S. Marines for four years after college and served in the Vietnam War.
He moved to Irvine in 1970 and lived in the Ranch. He had a career in real estate in Irvine for about a dozen years. 
He then worked in management of the toll roads until he became ill.
His daughter, Tania Grasselli, said her dad was a sports fanatic and had three TVs in his home so he could watch all the different sports games. He played some basketball when he was in college and also loved to watch baseball and football. He liked time at the beach as well as sailing and fishing. He also coached AYSO soccer while his three daughters were growing up in Irvine.
Mr. Grasselli was outgoing and had many friends. "He was a caring, loving man," his daughter added.
Mr. Grasselli is survived by his former wife, Rose Grasselli of Claremont; his father, Albert Grasselli of McLean, Va.; his three daughters, Tania Grasselli of Irvine, Tina Grasselli of Oakland, and Angie McIntosh of Tulsa, Okla.; and his brother, Nick Grasselli of Arlington, Va.

May 31
Marilyn Foreman
Longtime Woodbridge resident and community activist Marilyn Foreman died May 25 of cancer. After successfully battling lung cancer she had remained active and planned a trip to Hawaii this month until her cancer reappeared. She was 73.
A memorial service is planned for Saturday, June 2, at 11 a.m. at Lakeview Senior Center on the patio. Those planning to attend can contact Karen Speros at (949) 509-7180 for information and directions.
Mrs. Foreman was born Sept. 24, 1927, in St. Paul, Minn. She grew up in Rock Island, Ill., and attended MacMurray College for Women in Jacksonville, Ill. At the end of her first year of college, her family abruptly moved to Los Angeles to be near her uncle who had been injured in the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor and was living in a veteran's hospital.
Shortly after arriving in California, she met Bob Foreman, who was a student at the University of California, Los Angeles, and eventually graduated from the University of Southern California with a degree in engineering.
In 1947, they married in a synagogue in South Central Los Angeles. While living in the San Fernando Valley, their daughters, Susan and Robin, were born.
In the late 1940s, Mrs. Foreman began modeling size 4B sample shoes at annual shoe shows in downtown Los Angeles. Her career as a shoe model lasted many years and was the beginning of her "love affair with shoes," said her friend Karen Speros.
"She just loved shoes. If she liked a pair she would buy them in all colors. She bought three pairs of shoes while she had one foot in a cast. She was known for her love of shoes," said Speros.
In recent years Mrs. Foreman went into the clothing business with her daughter Susan Crockett, a former dance teacher at University High School.
She loved dancing, added Speros. She also enjoyed painting in oils and watercolors and liked to travel. She was actively involved in the organizations she supported, her energetic 4-foot-10 frame always moving.
"She was a very cheerful, outgoing person, always involved and always helping out," said Speros.
Mrs. Foreman's philanthropic activities included many years of teaching dance to children with developmental disabilities. She was a member of Charter 100, Stage Door and Working Wardrobes.
One of her greatest joys was doing things with her two granddaughters, Molly Crockett, a senior at Woodbridge High, and Cailin Crockett, a seventh grader at Lakeside Middle School.
She is survived by her daughters, Susan Crockett of Irvine and Robin Brooke of Laguna Beach; and her two granddaughters, Molly and Cailin Crockett of Irvine.
The family asked that memorial donations be made to Charter 100, Working Wardrobes or the AIDS Services Foundation.

Randy Wade Chow
Former Irvine resident Randy Wade Chow died May 27 at St. Joseph Hospital in Orange after a 17-month battle with cancer. He was 46. He and his family moved to Yorba Linda about 18 months ago but had lived in Irvine for 14 years.
Visitation for family and friends will be tonight, May 31, from 4 to 7 p.m. at Pacific View Mortuary, 3500 Pacific View Drive, Newport Beach. Pastor John Werhas will preside during funeral services Monday, June 4, at 10 a.m. at Yorba Linda Friends Church, 5211 Lakeview, Yorba Linda. Interment will be at Pacific View Memorial Park.
Mr. Chow was born Nov. 23, 1954, in Clarksdale, Miss. He grew up in Shelby, Miss., where his parents were in the grocery business. He graduated from high school at the Memphis University Academy. He went to Menlo College in Menlo Park, in Northern California, and graduated with a degree in business and accounting from University of Southern California in Los Angeles. After graduating, he returned to Mississippi to work for a short time.
He came back to Southern California and worked as an accountant for Deihl Evans and Co. in Orange County.
He married Mylene Domoto in 1981 in Pacific Palisades. They made their home in Huntington Beach. They moved to Northwood in Irvine in 1984, the same year he opened his own CPA business, Chow Grodsky and Co. in Irvine. 
In his free time Mr. Chow volunteered at El Camino Real Elementary School, where his sons, 11-year-old Brent and 7-year-old Collin, attended when they lived in Irvine.
He also coached his sons' soccer teams. He was in the Indian Guides program with his sons, members of the Crow tribe of North Irvine. The family were members of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Irvine.
"His passion was his family," said his wife.
In addition to his wife, Mylene Chow, and his sons, Brent and Collin, all of Yorba Linda, Mr. Chow is survived by his mother, Mae Chow of Mississippi. He is also survived by his brother, Wallace Chow of Westminster; and his four sisters, Margaret Starner of Miami, Fla., Thelma Chinn of Hillsboro, Mary Lee of Belmont, and Judy Heath of Carmel, Ind.

Lucy Martone Gaudio
Longtime Irvine resident Lucy Gaudio died of natural causes May 20. She was 88.
The Rev. Bill McLaughlin from Queen of Angels Catholic Church in Newport Beach presided at funeral services May 25 at Pacific View Mortuary in Newport Beach. Interment was at Pacific View Memorial Park.
Mrs. Gaudio was born Dec. 13, 1912, in Waterbury, Conn., to Italian immigrant parents. She grew up in Waterbury, the youngest of 11 children and the first to graduate from high school.
During her 20s, she and her first husband were dancers with the Dancing Sweethearts. Her daughter Carol Camardo was born while they lived in Connecticut. During World War II, she met her second husband, Ed Gaudio, while working in a rubber plant. They married in 1952 and moved to Costa Mesa, where he went to work as an electrical contractor. Their son, Mark Gaudio, was born while they lived in Costa Mesa.
The family moved to Turtle Rock in Irvine in 1967, when it was still like living in the "wild, wild west," according to Mark Gaudio. Mrs. Gaudio worked at the UC Irvine library in the 1970s and 1980s. Mr. Gaudio died 11 years ago.
Mark Gaudio said his mother's main passion was cooking. She taught her son-in-law, Joseph Ball of Irvine, to cook the sauces and they had family dinners every Wednesday night and often on Sundays in recent years.
"She was an outrageous cook. She could bring the house down with her cookies, pastries and Italian food, eggplant, lasagna. She was radical, she was an incredible cook," her son said.
She also enjoyed gardening.
Mrs. Gaudio was a longtime member of the Costa Mesa Women's Club. She and her husband also pioneered the Orange Coast Yacht Club. They had a 30-foot motor boat and followed their son's sailboat racing around Southern California. 
"She didn't swim and would only go on the boat in the bay, so she followed me driving and Dad followed in the boat," said Mark Gaudio.
The Gaudios attended St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Costa Mesa in their early years in Orange County. They later attended Queen of Angels Catholic Church in Newport Beach.
Mrs. Gaudio is survived by her son, Mark Gaudio, of Newport Beach; her daughter and son-in-law, Carol and Joseph Ball, of Irvine; her sister, Anna Trombley, of Connecticut; and her grandchildren, Courtney Ball, Blake Ball and Rory Gaudio.

May 10
Camilla "Cam" Sartor
Longtime Irvine resident and secretary at Bonita Canyon Elementary School Camilla "Cam" Sartor died May 1 at Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian, Newport Beach. She had battled ovarian cancer since October. She was 66.
A memorial service is planned for Saturday, May 12, at 10 a.m. at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church, 9 Hillgate in Turtle Rock.
Mrs. Sartor was born Feb. 1, 1935, in Lincoln Park, Mich., a suburb of Detroit. She was one of the middle children in a family of six siblings. She graduated there from Our Lady of Lords High School. She and her husband, Aldo Sartor, were married in St. Henry's Catholic Church in Lincoln Park. They had celebrated their 47th anniversary when Mrs. Sartor died.
The Sartors came to California in 1961 when Mr. Sartor was transferred in his career in sales of large industrial equipment. They lived in Whittier and San Gabriel before moving to their Turtle Rock home in Irvine in 1973.
Mrs. Sartor retired from the Irvine Unified School District six years ago. She started as an aide 20 years ago and then spent 15 years as secretary at Bonita Canyon Elementary School in Turtle Rock.
"The people who knew and loved her spanned generations, children, parents and grandparents," said a family friend. "She had friends of all ages and could relate to any age. She was outgoing and people were drawn to her smile and her warmth."
She became involved in the lives of many students, and remained friends with families long after the children had left elementary school, added the friend.
In her spare time, she turned her porcelain and china painting hobby into a thriving cottage business, and held an annual holiday boutique. 
She also loved traveling, dancing and cruise vacations. She particularly enjoyed going to Las Vegas.
Mrs. Sartor and her family were members of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic parish and she was on the Building Foundation Committee. She was also a member of the Holy Family Parent Group, the Italian Catholic Federation, the Tycoon Investment Group and ATSC (Assessment and Treatment Services Center.
She is survived by her husband, Aldo Sartor of Irvine; her son, Gregory Sartor of Irvine; her daughter and son-in-law, Geralyn and Steve Witte of Oceanside; her sisters, Joan Purcell of Leucadia and Annette Costantino of Temple City; her brothers, Bob Hamner of Dallas, Texas, and Jim Hamner of Detroit; and 31 nieces and nephews.
Memorial donations may be made to the Cancer Foundation/Hoag Memorial Hospital, Box 6100, Newport Beach 92658-6100, in memory of Cam Sartor.

May 3
Doris M. Winslow
Longtime Irvine resident Doris M. Winslow died quietly in her sleep April 30 in Orange, said her daughter-in-law Carol Winslow. She was 95 and had lived in the Groves Mobile Home Park since the mid-1970s until moving three years ago to a care facility where she could have more help.
She was born Doris McCurdy March 6, 1906, in Gardiner, Maine. Her parents had a farm and she grew up there one of eleven children. She attended nursing school in New York and worked as a nurse in New York's Metropolitan Hospital before she married. 
In 1930, she married Charles F. Winslow. After World War II, the couple moved with their 9-year-old son, Chuck, to Lakewood in the Los Angeles area. She took a job with Rockwell where she worked with blueprints. She stayed in Lakewood about 10 years after her husband died in 1967. Then she moved to the newly opened Groves Mobile Home Park in 1977 to be nearer her son, Chuck Winslow, and his family. Her son died in 1979 and Winslow Field in Northwood Community Park is named for him.
Mrs. Winslow was a reserved person and was devoted to her family, particularly her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. She often had children over to visit and attended many of their school and sports events. She loved baseball and liked going to all kinds of baseball games, from Little League to the Angels. She also liked reading and was particularly fond of mysteries.
Private graveside services were planned at Forest Lawn Cypress, where she was to be interred beside her husband.
Mrs. Winslow is survived by her daughter-in-law, Carol Winslow of Irvine; her grandchildren, David Winslow of Irvine, Tom Winslow of Newport Beach, and Terri Phillips of Reston, Va.; and five great-grandchildren.

Fred Martin Trujillo
Irvine resident Fred Martin Trujillo died April 8 of undetermined causes. He was hospitalized with pain the day before at Irvine Regional Hospital and Medical Center but died before a diagnosis could be made, according to his mother, Vickie Trujillo. He was 44.
Mr. Trujillo was born Feb. 8, 1957, in Santa Ana. He grew up there and graduated from Saddleback High School. He was an athlete and played basketball and baseball in his youth, and continued to play as a young adult. He remained a fan of the sports. He liked the Angels baseball team and was an enthusiastic fan of the Lakers basketball team.
After working in construction for a few years he went to work at UCI. He had been working there as a facilities engineer for 17 years when he died. He was attending classes to become more skilled in plumbing and enjoyed his work.
"He loved to talk to people, and always had that smile on his face. He was always willing to help people. He loved people," said his mother.
He also enjoyed fishing, both in salt and fresh water. Just two weeks before his death he had gone on a special fishing outing with his father, Fred Trujillo, and his son, Freddie Martin.
Services were held April 12 at Fairhaven Memorial Park in Santa Ana.
He is survived by his wife, Carol Trujillo of Irvine; his parents, Fred and Vickie Trujillo of Santa Ana; his grandmother, Petra Gallegos of Corona; his daughters, Juliana Trujillo of Irvine and Gina Martinez of Westminster; his sons, Freddie Martin Trujillo of Irvine and Manuel Huizar of Nevada; and his sister, Cookie Romero of Santa Ana; and one grandchild, Zoe Martinez of Westminster. He had looked forward to the birth of his second grandchild to be born to his daughter, Gina Martinez.

Anthony La Marr Voelkel
Longtime Irvine resident Anthony La Marr Voelkel died April 21 at Irvine Medical Center. He had been hospitalized about a week with a relapse of leukemia. He was 76.
Mr. Voelkel was born May 8, 1924, in Little Rock, Ark., but grew up mostly in the San Francisco Bay area in Northern California.
He joined the Marines and served three years during World War II.
Mr. Voelkel and his wife, Nelda Bonneau Voelkel were married in Berkeley in 1941 and recently celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary. They made their first home in Walnut Creek. 
After his wartime service, Mr. Voelkel was the youngest insurance agent to be hired by Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. He and his young family settled in San Lorenzo. They went to Phoenix, Ariz., in 1951 where he opened the first Metropolitan Life Insurance office in the state. They returned to California to San Mateo until he became a district manager in Pomona. He earned a Certified Life Underwriter degree in 1972 after four years of study. He retired in 1979 and the Voelkels moved to Greentree in Irvine.
Mr. Voelkel liked to stay busy in his spare time. His wife said he was an accomplished oil painter and was one of the founders of the Tustin Art League. 
He was also a ham radio operator. He liked woodworking and made several small boats and furniture for the family.
Sailing was one of his passions. He and his wife kept a 27-foot sailboat in Newport Harbor from 1966 to 1982 and enjoyed sailing together. Mr. Voelkel sailed in the Newport-Ensenada race three times. The two also had a boating accessories shop, La Marr's Loft, for several years, starting in 1980, 
"He loved people and we had lots of friends. He helped everybody and knew everybody. He was just busy all his life," his wife said.
Mr. Voelkel is survived by his wife, Nelda Bonneau Voelkel of Irvine; his sons, Ed Voelkel of Healsburg, Lance Voelkel of Escondido, and Mark Voelkel of Santa Rosa; his daughter, Diane Raboli of San Jose; and 14 grandchildren

April 26
Richard Hall
Longtime Irvine resident Richard Hall died March 27 at Irvine Medical Center after a short illness. 
A memorial service was held April 20 at Saddleback Church in Lake Forest. Burial was in his family plot in Tampa, Fla.
Mr. Hall was born in Tampa and grew up an only child in Long Island, N.Y. He attended Nichols College in Massachusetts and Pace University in New York City. He also attended two years of law school. 
He and his wife Dorothy had been married 54 years when he died. They married in 1946 in Rhode Island, where her family lived. During his career in accounting he worked as the controller for a number of companies. He retired last October.
In 1966 they came west to California and in 1972 they moved to Irvine. They lived in University Park Village I and Village II, and 12 years ago moved to Woodbridge. Mr. Hall was active with the homeowners association in University Park.
Mr. Hall was one who enjoyed life, according to his wife. In his spare time he was a creative cook and enjoyed trying to cook "anything and everything" that sounded interesting.
Mr. Hall is survived by his wife, Dorothy Hall of Irvine; his daughter, Donna Hagan of Aliso Viejo; his son, Dennis Hall of Cypress; and three grandchildren, Brianna Hagan of Aliso Viejo, and Shannon Hall and Chelsea Hall of New York.

Steven Bossen Cassidy
Former Irvine resident Steven Bossen Cassidy , now of Costa Mesa, died April 5 in an automobile accident in Costa Mesa. He was 31.
A memorial service was held April 10 at the Hyatt Newporter in Newport Beach. Close friend Rob Dodson led the service and speakers included his father-in-law, James Piper; his wife, Havilah Cassidy; his brother, Scott Cassidy; his sister-in-law, Janoah Piper; his uncle, Lee Bossen; and his brother-in-law, Jordan Piper.
Mr. Cassidy was born Jan. 21, 1971, in Great Lakes, Ill., to Jack and Barbara Cassidy. The family moved to Irvine and he graduated from Irvine High School in 1988. He attended DeVry Institute of Technology and graduated with a bachelor of science degree in 1991.
He worked for MCI Worldcom for the past 10 years.
"Steve was known for his amazing sense of humor, hard work and determination. He was loved dearly by all and will be greatly missed," said his brother Scott Cassidy.
Mr. Cassidy is survived by his wife, Havilah Cassidy of Costa Mesa; his father, Jack Cassidy of Irvine; his brother, Scott Cassidy of Irvine; and three nieces and nephews.
Memorial donations can be made to the Costa Mesa Police Department, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, or Olive Crest Children's Home. Photos and contact information are at www.stevecassidy.homestead.com.

Herman Sonen
Irvine resident Herman Sonen died April 10 at St. Joseph Hospital in Orange after an illness of several months. He was 84.
Mr. Sonen was born April 21, 1916, in Philadelphia, Pa. He served as a chief petty officer and meteorologist with the U.S. Navy during World War II in the battle of the Pacific.
After the war, he settled in New York City with his wife, Rose Wolfiler Sonen, and owned and ran auto dealerships in Long Island. They moved to California in 1959 and settled first in Orange County. 
They moved to the San Fernando Valley in the early 1960s where Mr. Sonen continued in his real estate career. He retired in the early 1980s and the couple moved to Woodbridge in Irvine.
Mr. Sonen was a reserved person and liked to read and keep up with world events as well as to play cards.
His son, Arthur, said people will remember him as the man who walked everywhere around South Lake, to the market and other places in Irvine. 
His son added, "He was a very kind and considerate person and never wanted to put anyone out or, as he said, have them make a fuss over him."
Before his wife Rose died in 1994 they enjoyed traveling together, driving, flying and taking cruises as well.
Friends and family held a celebration of his life. Mr. Sonen willed his body for medical research at UCI, his care for others evident even in his passing, said his son. 
Mr. Sonen is survived by his son and daughter-in-law, Arthur and Joanne of Honolulu; his daughter Mindy Sonen of San Diego; his companion and partner, Julie MacGregor of Irvine; his sister-in-law, Selma Wolfiler of New York City; and his two granddaughters, Michele and Amanda Sonen.
The family asked that memorial donations be sent to the American Heart Association.

Aug. 9
Grace Finnegan Hart
Grace Finnegan Hart died July 31 in McHenry, Ill. An Irvine resident since 1993, she had moved to Illinois in June to be with her son, Thomas Hart, while she battled colon cancer. She died of pneumonia. She was 88.
A memorial Mass will be celebrated Saturday, Aug. 11, at 10 a.m. at St. John Neumann Catholic Church in Woodbridge.
A funeral Mass was celebrated Aug. 4 at the Immaculate Conception Church in Waterbury, Conn. Burial followed at Calvary Cemetery along side her husband, Joseph Hart, in Waterbury. Mrs. Hart was a devout Irish Catholic and was born Sept. 23, 1912, in Waterbury.
She and her husband, Joseph, were married in Waterbury and had two sons, Thomas and Daniel. Mr. Hart died in 1949 in an asphyxiation accident. Mrs. Hart took her two young sons and moved in with her sister-in-law in Ansonia, Conn. Her oldest son, Daniel, was 11 and had to go to work to help pay the family bills. Mrs. Hart went to work in the Ansonia assessor's office and worked there until her retirement in 1977.
In 1993, Mrs.Hart moved to Irvine to be closer to son Daniel and his family. She was an avid card player at Lakeview Senior Center. One of her many joys was getting the family together every holiday season to play the card game canasta.
"Whether she wanted to or not, she always became the central focus during those card games," said her grandson, Jim Hart, who remembers her fondly as Gram.
She was also a fan of the city's TRIPS transportation program and used the service to go to and from Sunday Mass at St. John Neumann Catholic Church.
Mrs. Hart was preceded in death by her husband, Joseph Hart; her son, Daniel Hart in 1995; her daughter-in-law, Genn C. Hart in 2000; her sisters, Margaret and Julia; and her brothers, James, Joseph, William and Thomas.
She is survived by her son and daughter-in-law, Thomas and Esperanza Hart of McHenry; her sister and brother-in-law, Isabel and Francis Shanahan of Ormond Beach, Fla.; her grandchildren, William, John and Jim Hart of Irvine, Susan Wellman of San Clemente, Sheila Driscoll of Tustin, Joseph and Thomas Hart of Lakemoor, Ill., Danny Hart of Mundelein, Ill., and Michael, Grace and Theresa Hart of McHenry. She is also survived by her great-grandchildren, Kevin and Brendan Crofts of Irvine, Anthony and Jordan Hart of Irvine, Ryan Hart of Lakemoor, and Danielle Wellman of San Clemente.

July 26
Albert Kushner
The Irvine Disaster Emergency Communication (IDEC) program has lost one of its beloved longtime members. Turtle Rock resident Albert Kushner died July 17 at home surrounded by his family. He had battled cancer for several years. He was 79.
Mr. Kushner became involved with the disaster communication program shortly after he moved to Irvine in 1987. 
The program is made up of volunteer ham radio operators under the supervision of the Irvine Police and provide communication services during disasters, including the 1993 Laguna Fire. When he came he set about helping organize the program. He completely revamped and rewrote the group's handbook of procedures, a volume of several hundred pages, and earned the nickname "Handbook Al."
"He was an absolute sage, veteran member of the group. He was at every meeting, always smiling. He was a tremendously loved member," recalled police Sgt. Rick Handfield who supervises the group.
Handfield said Mr. Kushner received the IDECer of the Year Award for 1998 based on his tireless efforts and unusually clear thinking. He added that his association with Mr. Kushner and the presentation of the award was one of his proudest moments.
"There was a five- to seven-minute standing ovation for him. It was quite an emotional night," said Handfield.
Handfield added that the IDECer of the Year award will be renamed the Al Kushner Memorial Award and that there will be a permanent dedication page to Mr. Kushner in the IDEC handbook.
Mr. Kushner was born April 10, 1922, in Brooklyn, N.Y. His parents were immigrants, one from Poland and one from Russia. His father owned a small Italian-American grocery store in Brooklyn and his mother worked as a theater ticket taker. He graduated from Erasmus High School in Brooklyn and then earned a degree in mechanical engineering from the Cooper Union New York.
He worked on the Manhattan Project developing the atomic bomb in Oak Ridge, Tenn., and as an assistant professor at Syracuse University. After computers came into use in the 1950s he worked with the business consulting firm Cresap, McCormick and Paget Inc. and became vice president of and a partner in the company.
He worked on projects all over the world during this career, advising businesses how to better run their companies using computer technology as it developed. He was a founding member of the Institute of Management Consultants and president of the New York Chapter.
Mr. Kushner married Frieda Sales in 1945 in New York. They made their home for many years in Westchester County, outside New York City and raised three children. After he retired, the Kushners moved to Irvine in 1987.
In his spare time for many years he enjoyed carpentry. He also tried needlepoint. 
He worked as a volunteer with the stained glass artist who installed the window at Congregation Shir Ha-Ma'alot on Michelson in Irvine, where he and his wife were members of the congregation. He learned the stained glass techniques during the project and continued with other stained glass projects after finishing the synagogue window.
Services were held July 19 at Pacific View Cemetery in Newport Beach with burial in the memorial park. Family friend Rabbi Michael Mayersohn presided at the services. His granddaughter, Caryn Stump read a poem and his daughter-in-law Theresa Kushner sent a moving tribute from Paris, France, to be read aloud, said his wife.
Mr. Kushner is survived by his wife, Frieda Kushner of Irvine; his daughter, Linda Gail Bigger of Irvine; His daughter and son-in-law, Janine and Bob Brownstone of Santa Monica; his son and daughter-in-law, Matthew and Theresa Kushner of Paris, France; his grandchildren, Jason Bigger, Caryn Bigger Stump, Justin and Jordana Brownstone, and David Kushner; and one great-grandchild, Alyssa Stump.
The family asked that memorial donations be made to the Cooper Union in New York or the American Cancer Society. 

July 19
Gloria J. Faltermeier
Former Irvine resident Gloria J. Faltermeier died July 1 at a hospice in New York City, where she made her home. She had battled ovarian cancer and was 41.
Services were held July 5 at Gilda's Club in New York. She was buried in Green Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn, N.Y. She and friends used to jog the six-mile perimeter of the historic cemetery. She loved its beauty and chose it as her final resting-place.
Miss Faltermeier was born Oct. 23, 1959, in Rockville Centre, N.Y. The family moved to Northern California when she was 8 and to Irvine in 1972. She graduated from University High School in 1977 and her parents, John and Gloria Faltermeier still live in Turtle Rock. She played tennis on the school's boys tennis team for four years and was ranked in the Junior age group by Southern California tennis organizations. She went on to the University of California in Santa Barbara where she continued to play tennis. In 1979 she was ranked eighth in the nation among women tennis players in her age group, said her father. She graduated in 1982 with a degree in psychology and a minor in athletic coaching.
She moved to New York to attend graduate school and earned a master's degree from the Columbia School of Social Work. She remained in New York and had a psychotherapy practice there.
She loved New York City life, the people, the theaters and restaurants. After being diagnosed with ovarian cancer she was active with Gilda's Club, a fund-raising and support organization for people with the disease. 
Miss Faltermeier is survived by her parents, John and Gloria Faltermeier of Irvine; and her two brothers, John Faltermeier Jr. of Irvine and Brad Faltermeier of Richmond, Va. The family asked that memorial donations be made to Gilda's Club, 195 W. Houston St., New York, NY 10014.

July 12
Thomas Edroy Willingham
More than 500 people are expected at memorial services planned for Saturday, July 14, at 11 a.m. for Thomas Edroy Willingham, an Irvine resident and football coach at Woodbridge High School.
Services are planned at Mariners Church, 5001 Bonita Canyon road. Willingham, 52, died July 6 at University Medical Center in Fresno after being taken off life support. He had been injured in a car accident.
The loss is a blow to Woodbridge High School Athletic Department as well as to friends and family.
"This is a tragedy. He was an extremely giving guy. You couldn't have found a nicer guy than Tom. He was one of the most well-respected people I've known. The kids loved him. The kids absolutely loved him," said Woodbridge Athletic Director Alan Dugard, his voice breaking. He added that Mr. Willingham was probably the school's number one sports fan.
"He came to everything. He was a sports fan. I can't imagine anyone seeing as many games as he did. He loved the high school. He loved the kids," Dugard said. 
Mr. Willingham suffered major head injuries and never regained consciousness after being injured June 26 in an automobile accident in Kings City, north of Paso Robles along Highway 101 in Monterey County. He was hit about 9:10 p.m. by a 23-year-old allegedly drunken driver careening out of control and going the wrong way on the freeway. The man was arrested and faces charges, according to Cindy Willingham, Mr. Willingham's wife. Mr. Willingham was driving a 1993 Ford Explorer and wearing his seat belt. He was on his way to San Jose for business and also planned to play in a golf tournament.
Mr. Willingham was born Nov. 21, 1948, in Houston, Texas. He grew up there and graduated from Jones High School, where he played football and was a kicker. He attended the University of Texas, Austin, and earned a degree in business. He made a career in commercial real estate. He worked out of his home in Irvine, operating Willingham Investments.
His junior year in college, Mr. Willingham married his high school sweetheart, Cindy Pike. After he graduated, they first settled in Houston where he did property management and then moved to Overland Park, Kan. He worked in commercial real estate in Kansas City, Mo. They moved to Deerfield in Irvine 23 years ago.
Mr. Willingham enjoyed his work, said his wife, but he was mainly known as "a good person, a good friend and the ultimate family man." And he loved coaching and high school sports.
"He coached it all - girls, boys, all of it - soccer, basketball, baseball, football," she said.
He was active in youth sports organizations as well as coaching and helped organize the Laser club soccer team. At Woodbridge High School he coached the girls soccer team for many years and has been helping coach the football team since about 1995.
Mr. Willingham was one of the major assistant coaches and coached all the kickers and special teams for Woodbridge football, said Athletic Director Dugard.
"He was an extremely energetic guy. Game time was exhilarating for him. People loved him. He would kid with the kids and talk to all the coaches," he added.
Friends remember Mr. Willingham for his kindness and willingness to help.
"He was a tall man and one of the most caring, giving people with the largest heart for everyone. He had a Texas heart. He was there for everyone. He was a Texan all the way," said a family friend.
In addition to coaching and watching high school sports, Mr. Willingham was an avid golfer and enjoyed scuba diving as well. He also played on a team in a city adult softball league, said his wife.
Family friend the Rev. Glenn Rouse of the Newport Mesa Christian Center will preside at the services. The family will scatter Mr. Willingham's ashes privately at sea.
In addition to his wife, Cindy Willingham, a teacher at Woodbridge High, Mr. Willingham is survived by his daughters, Amber Willingham, 23, a third grade teacher in Turtle Rock, and Deidre Michele Willingham, 22, a math major at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, his son Mark Thomas Willingham, 23, a marketing major at San Diego State University.
He is also survived by his father, James Edwin Willingham Sr., of Richmond, Texas; and his brother, James Edwin Willingham Jr., of San Antonio, Texas.

July 5
Norbert Louis Heidenfelder
Longtime Irvine resident Norbert Louis Heidenfelder died June 29 at home in his sleep, according to his wife, Gloria Heidenfelder. He had battled cancer for several years. He had celebrated his 76th birthday about a month ago.
Mr. Heidenfelder was born June 2, 1925, in St. Peters, Mo. He grew up in St. Louis, Mo. He joined the Marine Corps in 1942 when he was 17. During World War II he served in the South Pacific and fought in the battles of New Britain, Peleliu and Okinawa. After the war, he was sent to China to help with the Japanese being returned to Japan. He received an honorable discharge in 1946 with the rank of corporal.
He then attended Washington University in St. Louis and received a degree in commercial art. He started his career as a graphic artist and owned printing companies, first in St. Louis and later in California. He and his wife lived in University Park for 21 years.
Mr. Heidenfelder was proud of having been a Marine and belonged to the 1st Marine Division Association, Southern California Chapter, and participated in many events at Camp Pendleton.
He loved golf and was a member of the Rancho San Joaquin Senior Men's Golf Association for many years. He was also a member of the Newport Harbor Elks Lodge and their RV club, the Newport Wanderers. He and his wife enjoyed trips in their RV and liked other travel as well.
One of Mr. Heidenfelder's special joys was being a grandfather, according to his wife. He loved spending time with his grandchildren and especially enjoyed having two, Christopher and Nicole Fabela, live nearby.
He is survived by his wife, Gloria Heidenfelder of Irvine; his four daughters, Katie Heidenfelder of St. Louis, Teri Galate of Oak Grove, Mo., Kathy Rogers of Friendswood, Texas, and Julia Fabela of Mission Viejo; three sons-in-law; two brothers; four sisters; and eight grandchildren.

June 21
Olive Griffin Ware
Longtime Irvine resident Olive Griffin Ware, known for her friendliness and her garden, died of natural causes May 27. She was 94.
A memorial service will be held Saturday, July 7, at the Community Church Congregational, Corona del Mar. Burial will be in Cleveland, Ohio.
Mrs. Ware was born Dec. 26, 1906, in Cleveland. She grew up there and earned a degree from Spencerian College in Ohio.
She married Robert Ware and they made their home in the Cleveland area. She worked as a legal secretary in Cleveland. 
Mr. Ware died in 1972. Mrs. Ware moved to Irvine in 1980, a year after her daughter, Joan Ware Murphy, moved here with her family.
Until May of last year, Mrs. Ware lived on her own in Rancho San Joaquin Apartments. She was a familiar sight, tending to her patio garden and was outgoing and friendly. After moving to Irvine she worked in child care until a few years ago. She did child care at South Coast Community Church, the Irvine Girls and Boys Club, for private families and for hotel guests, according to her granddaughter, Michelle Murphy Carlson.
In addition to her gardening, Mrs. Ware loved getting to know people, especially young people, said her granddaughter. She was close to her two Irvine grandchildren, Michelle Carlson and Robert Murphy. She knew many of their friends as well. She was often first to introduce herself as "Olive, like you put in a martini," recalled her granddaughter.
"She always stressed education and getting a degree. She was such a classy lady, so outgoing and had such a zest for life," said her granddaughter. 
She is survived by her daughter, Joan Ware Murphy, of Irvine; another daughter and son still living in Ohio; a second son living in Okinawa; her granddaughter, Michelle Murphy Carlson, of Irvine, her grandson, Robert Murphy, of San Diego, seven other grandchildren living in San Diego, Cleveland and Tokyo; and 11 great-grandchildren.


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