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Class Notes | Obituaries

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1975

UGRD Leavey Business '75
Aggie Horvath Potter

Born in Hungary in 1953, Aggie came to the U.S. in 1957 with her parents and eventually moved to Los Gatos. After graduation from SCU she went on to a finance career and later became a successful recruiter in the Valley. She was co-founder and Top Banana of the Gorilla Search Group for over ten years before retiring in 2011 as a result of her illness. She will be missed by all who knew her.

submitted Apr. 21, 2012 3:15P

1976

UGRD Arts & Sciences '76
William T. Prewett

William Thomas Prewett '76, M.B.A. '81 died Monday, July 6, 2009 at his home in San Jose, Calif., following a protracted illness. He leaves behind his beloved wife of 23 years, Carol Ann Prewett; three children, Scott Prewett, Kit Prewett and Sherri Acri; and six grandchildren. Born in Calvin, Okla., in 1929 to Harold Andrew Prewett and Johnie Elizabeth Lockmiller, William attended the US Naval Academy and graduated with distinction in 1953 as first in his class in mathematics. He received two graduate degrees from Santa Clara University; an MBA in 1976 and a Masters in Economics in 1981. He spent most of his career working for 32 years with IBM and lived with his family around the world including Austria, Virginia, Arizona, and New York.

submitted Aug. 4, 2009 12:39P
GRD Law '76
Timothy D. Cheney

Timothy Dunn Cheney J.D. ’76, 64, passed away Sunday, Feb. 9, 2014 at his home.  Timothy was born March 25, 1949 in Oakland, Calif. the son of Marshall and Nancy (Dunn) Cheney. His family moved to Oregon when he was in kindergarten. Tim attended Duniway Elementary School followed by Cleveland High School in Portland, Ore., where he graduated in 1967. He attended Stanford University, graduating in 1971 with a Bachelors degree, majoring in English. Tim went to law school at Santa Clara University, passing the California Bar in 1976. Tim practiced law in Palo Alto, Calif. for a few years, and then moved back to Oregon to pursue a teaching career. Tim taught business law at Linfield College in McMinnville, Ore. from 1984 to 1999, achieving tenure and the rank of Professor. Tim married Cynthia Pemberton August 7, 1999. Tim and Cynthia later moved to Idaho. Tim taught business law at Idaho State University from 1999 to his retirement. Throughout his life Tim was an avid and accomplished golfer. Tims battle with cancer started in 2005. He endured five surgeries.  He is survived by the love of his life, Cynthia, of Dickinson, ND. Tim is also survived by his sister, Linda and his mother, both currently of Springfield, Ore.

submitted Apr. 7, 2014 5:16P
UGRD Engineering '76
Robert Michael Fredianelli

Robert Michael Fredianelli '76, born in San Jose, Calif., on Dec. 18, 1953, passed away July 7, 2010. Loving husband to Paula; loving father to Robin Palleschi and husband Greg, Natalie Fredianelli-Lerno and husband, Brent, Gina Fredianelli and step-daughter Lara Belden. Also survived by parents Julio and the late Eola Fredianelli; brother Ron Fredianelli and wife Tina. Bob attended Saint Patrick's Grammar School, Bellarmine College Preparatory and Santa Clara University. Started with PG&E as a junior engineer 34 years ago and retired from his director position this year. Devoted Catholic, he loved God, his family, friends, and the San Francisco Giants. He will be remembered by all who love him for his energy and wit.

submitted Jul. 16, 2010 10:31A
UGRD Arts & Sciences '76
Robert J. Mazza

Robert J. Mazza '76 passed away unexpectedly, March 4, 2009 at work. Bob graduated from Washington High School, Class of 1973, a Magna Cum Laude graduate from Santa ClaraUniversity in 1976 and then received his Masters of Science in Public Administration from San Jose State University before going into banking where he was most recently a senior vice president at United American Bank. Bob was a member of The Rotary Club of Niles Fremont, where he served in many leadership roles including President and is the current Assistant Governor of Area 3 in Rotary District 5170. Bob was a former member of several other Rotary clubs, The Bay Area Corvette Club and a lifetime member of the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Ky. He was an avid Corvette enthusiast and enjoyed serving his community through Rotary. Bob was the loving husband for 30 yrs. of Gail Mazza, the cherished father of Katie Correia of Atwater, Calif., Robert B. Mazza, and Michael W. Mazza, both of Fremont, the devoted son of Rosemary and the late Alfred Mazza, the beloved brother of Marlene Houston and her husband Bob of Chowchilla, Calif., and uncle of Marie Olmstead of Merced, Calif. Bob is also survived by his precious granddaughter Elizabeth Correia and many other loving family members.

submitted Jul. 8, 2009 2:49P
GRD Ed./Couns Psych./Pastoral Min. '76
Rita B. Prime

Rita Burke Prime M.A. '76, M.A. '91  After a full and complete life, passed away peacefully August 3, 2009. Rita Margaret Mary Burke was born in New York City on 11/21/1915. She lost both her parents early in life, and lived in Connecticut with her step-grandmother, who was the joy of Rita's young life, and who inspired her love of Ireland and all things Irish, who nurtured in her the complete love and support of her family, and the inclusion in this family of all she came in contact with. If you ever met Rita, you knew she was "tough Irish", a coffee "fiend", a "fresh air fanatic", and a lifelong Dodgers fan. You also probably fell in love with her and became her friend forever. Rita met Ellis Roy Prime and they married on September 14, 1942 in New York City. Soon after, Rita and Roy moved to Los Angeles, where they had three children, Robert Bruce, Mary Ann, and Patricia Kathryn. They established a home and a strong base of family and friends, raised their children, and were very active in their Church. Rita always considered Los Angeles her "true home". Rita completed her college degree and began teaching high school in Southern California. Rita and Roy moved to Mountain View, Calif., in July of 1970, and Rita quickly became a teacher at Milpitas High School. She founded and ran their reading program and was the band counselor. During that time she was awarded a master's degree from Santa Clara University in education. While at SCU she joined Pi Lambda Theta sorority, and coordinated and ran a program dispersing information about head injuries, among many other projects. She also opened and ran an educational supply store for several years, all while still teaching. After retiring from Milpitas, she continued in education by consulting for the East Side Union High School district in San Jose. After moving north, Rita and Roy became parishioners at St. Joseph's Church in Mountain View. They became very involved with many aspects of the Church, and Rita was a founding member of the pastoral counseling group there. She returned to Santa Clara University and was awarded a master's degree in pastoral counseling. She continued as a lay minister and pastoral counselor past 2000. She had boundless energy, a smile for everyone, and a truly caring spirit of uncommon joy and generosity. Her greatest pride was her family: Robert Bruce (Donna), Mary Ann, and Patricia Kathryn (Doug McLean); her grandchildren Michael Bruce Prime (Warapha), Dennis Robert Prime (Lisa), William Wiley Bedsworth II (Louise), and Megan Aileen Bedsworth (Kent Bailey), and her great-grandchildren Kaelan, Jesse, Olivia, Gavin, Ellie, Colleen, and Wiley. She was the center of a loving family and will be missed by all who had the good fortune to know her.

submitted Aug. 27, 2009 11:04A
'76
Paul Joseph David

Paul Joseph David ’76, born July 5, 1954, died September 1, 2012. Beloved husband of Laurie David ’79. Father of Alison and Mariel and partners Ed and Graham. Smooth sailing now in heavenly waters.

submitted Sep. 14, 2012 12:07P
'76
Patricia (Towry) Corby

Patrica "Trish" (Towry) Corby '76 passed away peacefully at home on Sept. 9, 2014, after a hard-fought battle against cancer. Trish was a patented inventor, an innovator, and a businesswoman. Trish is pre-deceased by her immediate family, but is survived by many friends, most notably her Santa Clara roommate, and dearest friend Robin Munson '76, who cared for Trish on her final journey. Trish will always be remembered by her life long "family of friends" that came to be from her days at Santa Clara University. She was living in Meridian, Idaho.

Trish Towry met Robin Munson in Swig Hall in the fall of 1972 and they remained lifelong friends. Robin was the person that took care of Trish during her final illness - a testimony to the value of what the friendships we create at Santa Clara mean to us for the rest of our lives. Trish was indeed a patented inventor. She created a menthod or a system whereby milk products could be better preserved and shipped so that these mike products might remain viable, not lose their flavor, and have the capacity to be stored for longer periods of time. In doing so,Trish formed helped to form a company called "The Good Cow," which was eventually sold to a larger business consortium. 
 
With her she has taken a little bit of our hearts, and a part of the heart that was and is Santa Clara University Class of 1976.
 
 
submitted Oct. 22, 2014 8:10A
UGRD Arts & Sciences '76
Michael S Bailey Sr.

 

Michael S. Bailey Sr. ’76 passed from this earth Jan. 22, 2011. Mike died of natural causes at his parents' home in Watsonville, Calif. Mike was born April 26, 1954, in Watsonville. He graduated from Watsonville High School in 1972, and Santa Clara University, 1976, with a B.S. in Chemistry. He later earned an MBA from the University of San Diego. He was commissioned in the U.S. Navy, serving in the submarine force on active duty for 12 years, and as an active reservist for nine years. He rose to the rank of Commander before leaving the active reserve. Later, he entered the software business and became a certified business process engineer. Mike was a man of many talents. He earned the highest award in 4H, All Star. He was an excellent skier, serving in the national ski patrol at Squaw Valley, as well as being a pilot, sailor, and scuba diver. He loved gardening and was constantly fighting against gopher invasions. Mike served his community through the Scouting program, as a Unit Commissioner and Eagle Advisor. Many young men have given him credit for helping them attain the rank of Eagle Scout. He was generous with his time to help his neighbors. He was a member of St. Peter Catholic Church in Fallbrook, Calif.

 

submitted Feb. 14, 2011 4:51P
'76
Maureen Romano

Maureen Romano ’76 passed away on Feb. 12, 2014 at the age of 59 from complications due to pneumonia. Maureen was born in Seattle, Wash. on March 12, 1954, the second child of Dr. Robert and Mary Jean Parker Romano. Maureen is survived by her father Robert, sister Anne Sarewitz (Stephen), brothers Robert, Jr. (Cathy), Stephen (Juliet), John (Grace), and James (Brooks) as well as her many nieces and nephews: Maureen, Julia, and Alison Sarewitz; and Joseph, Tommy, Mary Claire, Henry Romano ’12, Will, Juliet, Matt, Mark, Caroline, Joshua and Nicholas Romano. Her mother, Mary Jean, predeceased her. Maureen graduated from Convent of the Sacred Heart Forest Ridge, received her undergraduate degree from Santa Clara University that included a year in the Gonzaga-in-Florence program and obtained an MBA from the University of Washington. After a hiking accident in 1982, Maureen resided at Providence Mount St Vincent in West Seattle, where she created a life for herself enriching the lives of everyone around her. She leaves behind her extended family of caregivers, volunteers, and residents at Providence Mount St Vincent. Maureen's lifelong friends remained a constant in her life both before and especially after her accident. Every year, her Forest Ridge classmates would gather at the Mount to celebrate her birthday, bringing immense joy to Maureen as she reminisced with each and every friend. She never knew a stranger, only a friend she hadn't met. Her memory for names was impeccable. She greeted all by name- and usually with the nickname she created for them. Maureen never lost her sense of humor making all around her feel at ease. Maureen's interests included a love of languages, travel, tennis, skiing and singing. She loved singing loudly I Left My Heart in San Francisco, bringing back memories of her life in the Bay area.

submitted Apr. 22, 2014 9:57P
'76
Joseph P. Kelly

Joseph P Kelly III ’76, May 5, 1954, to Feb. 12, 2014. He was a resident of Santa Clara, the son of the Hon. Joseph P. Kelly ’34 and Cloiva Kelly of La Cañada. In 1972, Joe continued the family tradition of attending Santa Clara University and resided in the Bay Area ever since. Relatives who also attended SCU were cousins Kelly Idiart ’71, Roger Idiart ’75, and Daniel J. Kelly ’70. For close to 20 years Joe was a faithful employee of Old Republic Title Company. Joe traveled extensively and became a cruise expert. He enjoyed all things English and Irish. His untimely passing has left his family and friends with memories of his love, laughter, wit and kindness.

submitted Feb. 27, 2014 2:55P
GRD Ed./Couns Psych./Pastoral Min. '76
James McCullough

James McCullough M.A. '76 on May 24, 2008.

submitted Jun. 2, 2010 12:07P
'76
Gene Mackey

Gene Mackey ’76, born Dec. 18, 1952, a resident of Danville, died on Sunday, April 22, 2012 at the age of 59, lovingly surrounded by his children and dear family friend the Rev. Vincent Scott. Gene was born in San Francisco in 1952 and lived his childhood years in South San Francisco attending Los Cerritos Elementary, Parkway Junior High, and graduating from South San Francisco High School in 1971. He joined the United States Air Force and was ready for deployment to Vietnam when the war ended. He was a 1976 graduate of Santa Clara University majoring in business and was then credentialed as a CPA, with his first professional job working at Ernst and Young in San Francisco. Gene began a 35-year career in the real estate and mortgage industry with Security Pacific and Better Homes, then ultimately opening his own real estate mortgage company, Bay Pacific Realty, with his wife Mary. In 1998 he joined Chase Manhattan Bank's Home Loan Center. From there Gene moved his career path to manage: First Horizons Mortgage Co., Washington Mutual Loan Center, Countrywide Home Loans and then ending his mortgage career with Bank of America Home Loans in Danville, where he lived. He loved building company offices and mentoring the marketing and sales associate staff as well as the support staff that so loyally worked alongside him. Survived and forever loved by his wife, Mary, sons; Scott (Courtney), Kevin (Shelley), his devoted son Sean, who always remained an inspiration of grace and courage for Gene, and grandchildren Jack, Taylor, Sabrina and Stefanie. Gene is also survived by his parents Gene and Margaret Mackey, married 63 years, brother Robert (Pam) and nephews Ryan and Adam. Gene was predeceased by his beloved infant baby brother, David.

submitted Apr. 26, 2012 5:02P
UGRD Arts & Sciences '76
Florence Muniz Sprague

Florence Muniz Sprague '76 on April 27, 2010. Florence was a unique and amazing woman, born before her time. Unable to afford university, she attended nursing school and served her country as a cadet nurse in a military hospital. She would work as a nurse well into her seventh decade. In 1946 she met and married the love of her life, Neal Sprague. Florence supported Neal through dental school and moved with him to Sunnyvale where they established their practice and raised their family. Florence received her bachelor's degree from Santa Clara University in 1976 and went on to teach classes at De Anza College and adult education programs. She was an avid student and a passionate teacher. She loved gardening, writing, reading, and travel. Florence celebrated the millennium with a three-month-long cruise around the world, adding to the 85 countries she had visited. She was a voracious reader, and loved sharing the books and movies she liked best. Florence also loved dancing, ice cream, and, most of all, her family. She is survived by her sister Sally, daughters Jan and Karen, her grandchildren, and many, many friends. She is now enveloped in the loving arms of her husband Neal and her son Don, who went before her to prepare the way.

submitted May. 13, 2010 1:29P
UGRD Leavey Business '76
Dennis McClenahan

Dennis McClenahan '76, age 60, passed away suddenly on May 30, doing what he loved – playing tennis. Dennis will be remembered as a loving partner, father and friend, a successful businessman, a superb athlete, and a generous community volunteer. He lived a rich life, excelling in many domains. Most important, he will be remembered for his kind and generous sprit and his strong devotion to his family and friends. He will be deeply missed.

Dennis was a resident of Palo Alto and was raised in Santa Clara, Calif. He graduated from Bellarmine College Prep in 1972 and Santa Clara University with a B.S.C in Finance. He was a College All-American wide receiver at Santa Clara University and, upon graduation in 1976, he signed a professional football contract with the Oakland Raiders. Dennis's 35-year insurance career began in 1979 with Jardine Insurance Brokers, followed by Nationwide Insurance from 1988-1993. He then went on to own and operate D.A. McClenahan Insurance Agency before joining Professional Insurance Associates, Inc. as a Vice President in 2003.

Dennis was an incredible athlete, excelling at all sports. His particular passion was tennis. Dennis played on numerous USTA league teams and in many tournaments throughout the state. He was greatly admired by his teammates and opponents alike. In 2012, he was ranked number 1 in Northern California and number 7 in the state in his age category. Dennis was known as a formidable competitor as well as a true gentleman on and off the court.

He was active in the community as well. Dennis was a former member of the Santa Clara Preparatory Alumni Council as well as a past member of Santa Clara University Board of Fellows. Dennis enjoyed participating in fundraising events for the Canary Foundation, Menlo Charity Horse Show, and tutoring children from the Sacred Heart Nativity School. Dennis leaves behind his son Tyler (daughter-in-law Helen), daughter Molly Featherstone (son-in-law John), daughter Murphy, and his grandchildren, Cade, Max, Archer, Oakes, and Enzo. He is survived by his partner Laura Lauman, his brother Bob McClenahan, and sister Judy Vollenweider. 

submitted Aug. 14, 2014 11:27P
GRD Jesuit School of Theology '76
Dean Brackley, S.J.

Dean Brackley, S.J., M.Div. ’76, died Oct. 16, 2011, surrounded by members of his community and several of his closest friends at the Jesuit infirmary in Santa Tecla, El Salvador, following a six-month struggle with pancreatic cancer. Kevin Burke, S.J., Dean of the Jesuit School of Theology, wrote: "Dean was one of the Jesuits assigned to El Salvador following the assassination of the six Jesuits and their two co-workers at the University of Central America in November 1989.  His contribution to the mission of the UCA and the Central American province of the Society of Jesus was exemplary. Indeed, he became a key link in the chain of witnesses keeping alive the memory of the Central American martyrs in El Salvador and in the universal Church.  He was a great human being and a great Christian. It is an honor to recognize him as an alumnus of the Jesuit School of Theology."

submitted Apr. 20, 2012 3:50P
'76
Charles D. Williamson

Charles Dean Williamson '76 March 21, 1954 - Dec 17, 2013 Resident of Santa Clara Past away at age 59. Born and raised by James and Pauline Williamson in Sunnyvale and survived by sister Rosemary Albrecht and brother James. "Chuck" graduated from Sunnyvale High School in 1972, obtained a B.S. in Economics from Santa Clara University in 1976, and two Masters Degrees in Human Resources from Boston University and Chapman University. He served in the U.S. Army as a 2nd Lieutenant in the medical corps and then worked for the U.S. Veterans Service Hospital in Palo Alto until he retired in 2010. Chuck enjoyed current events, movies, dining out and his cat Rusty. Chuck loved traveling, visiting 48 states, Europe, the Caribbean, Asia and Africa. 

submitted Feb. 3, 2014 3:52P
GRD Ed./Couns Psych./Pastoral Min. '76
Audrey Bernfield

Audrey Bernfield M.A. ’76, died on her seventy-fifth birthday, November 3, 2012, after a long battle with cancer. Audrey was an innovative force at several universities. At Stanford, she nurtured students in the Program in Human Biology while building an advising system that became a model for the nation. Later, as Director of Undergraduate Advising, she championed the view that college is a place for intellectual exploration where students discover the passions that lead to meaningful lives and careers. As Director of Enrichment Programs at Harvard Medical School, she developed programs that expanded medical students' engagement in the world at large, and was the first non-physician elected president of the International Health Medical Education Consortium, now known as GHEC. She was a lifelong crusader for reproductive rights, starting as a counselor and eventually serving on the boards of several women's health organizations, including Planned Parenthood of Boston. She also served on the boards of the Massachusetts Women's Political Caucus; The Transition Network, an organization for professional women who are transitioning to retirement; New Georges, a New York City theatre company; and as President of the 1661 Foundation, which supports the development of young progressive leaders. Audrey earned a BA in Political Science from the University of Illinois and a Masters in Counseling Psychology from the University of Santa Clara. She is survived by her children, Susan and her husband Claude Millman, Jim and his wife Camilla Enders, Mark and his wife Rachel Saunders, and four grandchildren. Her husband Merton R. Bernfield died in 2002.

submitted Nov. 28, 2012 10:13P
UGRD Arts & Sciences '76
Andre Lavaly
André Lavaly ’76 died on May 15, 2010 at the age of 76. He was born in San Francisco on January 3, 1953. He was a unit director for the Oregon State Hospital. He is survived by his wife, Paula; daughters, Heather McFarland, Heather Davis, Nikki Lavaly and Jennifer Watson; son, Gabe, brother-in-law Marshall R. Moran, sister Gale E. Moran '76, and niece Kendra V. Calderon '02.
submitted Apr. 13, 2011 9:50A

1977

UGRD Arts & Sciences '77
Timothy William Reed

Timothy William Reed ’77 passed away on Aug. 23, 2010. A fourth generation Californian, with ties to Santa Clara Valley Pioneer Families, he was born in San Jose to William and Jane Reed. He was raised on the family ranch in Sunnyvale and grew up picking and drying fruit. He graduated with honors from Homestead High, De Anza College and Santa Clara University, receiving his Bachelors of Science Degree in Chemistry. Reed worked in the electronics industry prior to undertaking a major career change. Over the years he worked as an Independent contractor, Property Manager before settling in on a career as an Accountant. His passion in life revolved around his interests and hobbies and his favorite team the Forty-niners. He loved to search out unique experiences and tasting foods from different cultures. He was an avid reader and collector of books and periodicals. Other interests included martial arts, history, politics, music and movies. He is greatly missed by his surviving family, loving parents Bill and Jane, brother Patrick with his wife Roseann and family, along with his many cousins, their spouses and extended families. He will be fondly remembered for the attributes which made him shine. His thoughtfulness, generosity, loyalty, dedication and work ethic, his good nature, humor and of course his trademark grin. 

submitted Sep. 21, 2010 12:44P
GRD Engineering '77
Steven E. Curtis

Steven Emerson Curtis M.S. ’77, our wonderful husband, father, Papa, and hero, passed away on January 5, 2013 after a courageous eight-year battle with cancer. He valiantly inspired others and proved that this is still a day of miracles. Steve was born in Salt Lake City on March 16, 1948 to Reuben Emerson and Alice Call Curtis. He graduated from Highland High School and served an LDS mission to Northern Germany. He married his eternal sweetheart, Janice Derrick in the Salt Lake Temple. He graduated from the University of Utah with a degree in electrical engineering and received a master's degree from Santa Clara University in California. He spent the majority of his career designing medical imaging equipment and managing research and development departments. He loved solving mathematical engineering problems and was granted many patents. Steve was a man of absolute integrity. He had sound judgment and great wisdom. He possessed charity for all and so appreciated the love and prayers offered for him during his health struggles. He left a legacy of love, service, humor, and devotion to his family. He endured to the end with steadfast faith in the Savior and a testimony of the gospel. He was without guile and was a true disciple of Christ. Steve loved gardening and his beautiful flowers were legendary. He passed on his love of camping and hiking in the mountains and national parks to his family. He loved music and sang every chance he had in choirs, quartets and duets with Jani and was an excellent choir director. He enjoyed traveling and saw much of the world. He delighted in the scriptures and was continually immersed in them. He had an extensive knowledge of the gospel and lived its principles with exactness. He served faithfully in many callings, but his favorite was teaching, where he constantly bore his testimony of the love, kindness, and mercy of our Savior, Jesus Christ. He will be deeply missed by his wife, Jani, their children Michael (Rochelle) Curtis, Matthew (Brooke) Curtis, Alisa (Kevin) Bolander, Jennifer (Alan) Stout, and 14 grandchildren. 

submitted Feb. 1, 2013 12:04P
GRD Law '77
Steve Wright
Steve Wright J.D. ’77, longtime criminal defense attorney known as a straight shooter in the courtroom and second father to many young people he helped through the legal system, passed away unexpectedly on December 30, 2010, while on a family vacation in Reno, Nev. Wright, a father of five, had celebrated his 40th wedding anniversary on Dec. 18 to Rita Wright, whom he'd known since nursery school and started going steady with at age 14.  Born in Santa Monica and raised in Southern California, Wright and his wife moved to Santa Cruz in 1972 so he could attend UC Santa Cruz. After graduating with a degree in community studies in 1974, Wright went on to Santa Clara University Law School and after finishing, he immediately began working for the Santa Cruz County Public Defenders Office. His interest in defense work was piqued early when he did a project with the public defenders office for a UCSC class, and it continued to grow through his work as an investigator there during law school, family members said. “He just loved people and wanted to make sure everyone got a fair trial even if they didn't have any money,” said Wright's oldest daughter Alison Wright, 36, of Scotts Valley. “He wanted to protect people's rights, especially the people who couldn't take care of themselves.” Wright left the Public Defenders Office in 1989 to start a private practice with attorney Tom Wallraff. Wright and Wallraff provided alternate public defender services through a contract with the county Board of Supervisors. The duo disbanded the practice in 1995 and Wright continued practicing criminal defense work as a sole practitioner. Recently, he won the attempted murder case of 17-year-old Fabio Jesus Lopez, who was accused of a December 2009 shooting on the Pajaro River levee. Lopez was tried as an adult and faced a life sentence. After the jury delivered a not guilty verdict Dec. 13, Wright said he was “thrilled... because it meant (Lopez's) whole life.” Public defense attorney Jerry Christensen, a friend and colleague of Wright for 35 years, said Wright's death is a major loss for the local legal community. “It's sort of like losing a younger brother. We grew up together in the public defenders system,” Christensen said. “Steve was just a really special guy. He was one of the better ones around.” Wright's legal career was marked by two unsuccessful attempts of running for a seat on the Santa Cruz County Superior bench. He lost a bid in June 2008 to former Assistant District Attorney Ariadne Symons and he lost a race last year to civil attorney Rebecca Connolly. Wright, who would have been the first criminal defense attorney to sit as a judge in Santa Cruz County, lost both races despite broad support countywide. Symons said she's tried several homicide cases against clients of Wright, and since she's been a judge, he's never hesitated to face her on the bench. “Steve was an excellent lawyer,” Symons said. “He tried hard cases and was always willing to take the hard cases. He recently convinced me to give his client drug rehabilitation because of his excellent presentation. It got everyone's heart strings.” Outside the courtroom, Wright was dedicated to youth sports programs, especially the athletic program at Harbor High School, where his children attended and excelled at various sports. Harbor High officials recently inducted Wright into its Hall of Achievement in honor of his work as booster club vice president, director of the school's annual golf tournament and announcer for the football, volleyball and basketball games, as well as wrestling matches. District Attorney Bob Lee, often on the opposite side of the courtroom from Wright, described him as a great trial lawyer who was dedicated to his family. “He constantly talked about his kids and his wife Rita, constantly,” Lee said. “He was a true gentleman, and I can't say that about all the attorneys I work with.”
 
submitted Feb. 11, 2011 12:07P
GRD Law '77
Richard F. Lee

Richard F. Lee JD '77 died peacefully on January 9, 2012, after living bravely and valiantly with frontotemporal degeneration (FTD) and ALS. Rick never complained or felt self-pity about his diagnosis. Instead, he accepted it and committed himself to staying active and serving others. Until his final month, he volunteered at the Unity Shoppe and Central Office of AA, and loved walking long distances sharing hope with everyone he met. He participated in a research project at UCSF so future families will not experience this devastating disease.

Rick was born in San Francisco to Bruce P. Lee and Barbara L. Lee (Pierce), and raised in Millbrae, California. From the time he was a toddler he was the consummate jokester. In his own inimitable way he was also a leader. He was captain of the safety patrol at his elementary school, and senior class president at Mills High School. He was on the debate team at UCSB, and graduated summa cum laude from Santa Clara Law School in 1977. He returned to Santa Barbara as an associate at Schramm & Raddue where he later became a senior partner.

He was married to Barbara Conway from 1976 to 1990 and they had three wonderful children: Allison, Andrea and Adam. In 1993 he married Diana Jessup and together they adopted Diana's foster daughter Lorraine Monroy. Rick loved being a father and grandfather.

He also loved being a lawyer and helping people. When Schramm & Raddue dissolved, he opened his own office where he enjoyed representing a wide variety of clients. In 2007 he joined Reicker, Pfau, Pyle & McRoy LLP where he practiced until his medical retirement in 2010. He had a passion for correcting injustices, whether the cause was worth millions of dollars or none at all.

Rick held leadership roles in many civic organizations, including Legal Aid, Santa Barbara County Bar Association, Alano Club, Barristers' Club, St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church and Teen Court. Rick was a role model in dealing openly and candidly with the challenges he faced in life. He was proud to have 29 years of sobriety and to have survived prostate cancer. Rick had amazing stamina and always strove to see the best in people. His commitment to enjoying life and helping others will live on in the many people he mentored and loved. One of the greatest gifts Rick received in his last year was the loving care of his son-in-law Nathan who was his full time caregiver.

Rick is survived by his wife Diana; his children Allison in San Francisco, Andrea (Nathan) Ridgell in Santa Barbara, Adam in San Francisco, and Lorraine (Marcus) Haynes in Las Vegas; his brother Steve in Santa Barbara; his sister Janet in Lincoln; his grandchildren Kaden and Kashton Ridgell, Anthony, Monique and Chauntal Monroy, and Brooklynn Haynes; and his aunt and cousins in the Sanfillipo family. His parents and sister Joanne predeceased him.

submitted Jun. 12, 2012 6:08P
'77
Mimi Murry Meriwether

Mimi Murray Meriwether ’77 died on September 28, after a very long struggle with cancer. Born in Pittsburg, PA in 1955, Mimi' s early schooling was at The Trinita dei Monti in Rome, Italy, where her family resided for a number of years while her father pursued business interests in Europe. Returning to the United States, her family settled in Pebble Beach, California in 1966. Mimi entered Santa Catalina School in Monterey, and remained there until completing her high school years. After her freshman year at Santa Clara University, Mimi transferred to Georgetown University, where she graduated in 1977. Mimi's marriage to John Meriwether brought her to New York City living and then to their home in North Salem, NY. In later years Mimi found great serenity in her cherished Taos, New Mexico. Mimi was beloved by friends beyond number. The charity in her heart was unrestrained, and often found exercise in her generosity to friends in need. The parade of visitors to the hospital from near, far and very far was remarkable. How she was loved! Mimi was a profoundly spiritual person whose virtue was evident to all who knew her. Many times she traveled to Medjugorje, a place of pilgrimage in the former Yugoslavia, where she often brought friends as her guests. From childhood, Mimi loved horses, and she became a very accomplished competitive horsewoman. She achieved international success in the demanding sport of three day eventing, which has been likened to competing in a triathlon. Arrestingly courageous in coping with her illness, Mimi was small of frame and had an extraordinary sweetness and magical delicacy that captivated all who had the great grace of knowing her. Mimi's parents, Mr. and Mrs James G. Murray, Jr. are deceased, as is her sister, Pamela Murray, who was a nun. She is survived by John Meriwether, her sisters Joan Murray, Judy Allrich and Patricia Huse and by her brother James G. Murray, III. She leaves three nieces, five nephews and an enormous number of friends, particularly Heather Croome-Carroll and Diane Summers, who were so good to Mimi in her sickness as were so many others.

submitted Nov. 16, 2012 9:03A
'77
Michael P. Bini

Michael Peter Bini ’77, a resident of Scotts Valley, died in December 2013. Michael, a gifted storyteller, passed away after a brief illness. He leaves behind his daughter, Casey Lynn Colwell, his parents, Louis and Marie Bini, his sisters—Suzanne Shehadeh, Adrienne Bini, and Tosca Bini (Adam Lawrence)—his brother, Robert Bini (Sarah Lindsay), his niece, six nephews, and many relatives. A graduate of Santa Clara University, Michael, 59 years old, worked in commercial real estate for over thirty years. His generous heart and free spirit will be greatly missed.

submitted Dec. 30, 2013 12:29P
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