Thomas J. Buechel
Thomas J. Buechel, 64, of Fountain Hills passed away July 4, 2009 under hospice care in Scottsdale.
Born in Centerline, Mich., he graduated from St. Clement High, and attended Wayne State University. He served in the U.S. Army in the Viet Nam Conflict.
He owned a convenience store in Michigan until 1992, moving to Arizona in 1994. He worked for Ft. McDowell Baja Conoco for 5 years and the Phoenix Water Plant for 6 years until his illness in January, 2008.
He contributed to his community, enjoyed his family and spending time outside.
He is survived by his wife, Ingrid, of Fountain Hills; son, Eric, of Kalkasa, Mich.; brother, Fred, of Warren, Mich.; sisters, Barbara Williams, of Maine, Elizabeth Bard, Jane Bishop and Terese Wommel, all of Michigan.
A Memorial Scripture will be 10 a.m. Thursday, July 9, at Messinger Fountain Hills Mortuary, 12065 Saguaro Blvd., Fountain Hills. A memorial will be held in the early fall in Michigan
Bessie Costa, 90, of Fountain Hills, passed away July 4, 2009. She lived in Brooklyn and Long Island for 80 years before moving to Fountain Hills with her husband, Joey, in 2000. He preceded her in death in 2002 at the age of 83.
Bessie leaves behind her daughters, Micki and Debbie; and her grandchildren, Sheree (Tommy), Dean, and Bobby; her sons-in-law, Cliff and Bob, and the light of her life, her great-grandchildren: Jake, Cole, Ali, Riley and Gigi. She also leaves her wonderful and loving nieces and nephews, friends; sister-in-law Mary; brother-in-law, Tom; and dear friend Millie.
We will remember mom for many things, especially our Sunday dinners and her Italian sauce. And no one can make a better chicken soup.
Bessie enjoyed traveling with her family and always requested to stop when we passed a “casino.” Bessie knitted and crocheted the most beautiful baby clothes, it was her passion.
Arrangements are by Messinger Fountain Hills Mortuary.
Bruce J Rinebarger
Our beloved husband, father, grandfather and friend passed peacefully on Thursday, July 2, 2009, in Scottsdale.
Bruce was the oldest child born to Ted and Edith (Burris) Rinebarger on August 30, 1931 in Winamac, Ind., but was raised and attended schools in Milwaukee, Wis. Bruce and Pat (Leonard) were married there in 1957.
Bruce served four years in the U. S. Navy before graduating from Milwaukee School of Engineering as a Mechanical Engineer. He was employed 33 years by Sundstrand Corp. in Rockford, Ill. and Ames, Iowa.
His passions were his children, grandchildren, family and friends. Bruce was an usher at The Church of the Ascension and volunteered at the Senior Center in Fountain Hills.
He was preceded in death by his parents, sister, Margaret (Ellison) and brother, David Rinebarger.
Bruce is survived by his loving wife, Pat; son Brian (Debby) of Greenbackville, Va.; daughters, Kathleen (Danny) Drungilas of Lawrence, Kan., and Kelly of Scottsdale. Also surviving are grandchildren Nick, Megan and Amber Rinebarger; and Jessica Nies, Mitchell (Hannah) and Shelby Clark.
Visitation was held at Messinger Mortuary Monday, July 6, with a prayer service. A funeral mass was celebrated on Tuesday, July 7, at Church of the Ascension.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Alzheimer’s Assoc. or Hospice of the Valley at 1510 E. Flower Street, Phoenix, AZ 85014.
A funeral mass for Jacqueline Tonn, age 66, of Gillette, Wyo. was held Wednesday, July 1, 2009 at St. Matthew’s Catholic Church in Gillette with Father Cliff Jacobson officiating. Inurnment will be at a later date at Monument Hill cemetery in Thermopolis, Wyo.
Ms. Tonn died on Sunday, June 28, 2009 at the Campbell County Memorial Hospital. Gillette Memorial Chapel was entrusted with the arrangements.
Jacqueline, known to her friends and family as Jackie, JT or Nana Jackie, was born on May 16, 1943, in Chicago, Ill., the only child of Bernice Broda.
She was raised and educated in Chicago. After graduating from high school, Jackie obtained a nursing degree. Jackie worked as a surgical nurse throughout her 30-year career in Illinois, Wyoming and Arizona. She retired in 2004 and came to Gillette in 2006 to be near her son and grandchildren.
She is survived by her son and his wife, Matt and Amie Tonn of Gillette; her grandchildren, Bryce and Ashleigh Tonn of Gillette; former husband, Terry Tonn of Thermopolis, Wyo.; five step-children and 12 grandchildren; and her Miniature Schnauzer, Sugar.
Memorials and condolences can be sent in Jackie’s name in care of Gillette Memorial Chapel, 210 W. 5th St., Gillette, WY 82716
Michael E. Anderson, Jan. 9, 1989 – April 8, 2009
We are deeply saddened that our beloved son, Michael Edward Anderson, passed away suddenly and unexpectedly on April 8, 2009, succumbing to a viral infection while in a semester abroad in Sydney, Australia studying at the University of Technology.
He is survived by his parents, Linda and Frederick; and his sister, Allison.
Michael, 20 years old, was a sophomore at the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. majoring in international finance and marketing.
He was passionate about his family, his friends, his school and his many endeavors. Michael was an avid tennis player and had a strong interest in health and working out.
He loved to travel and had a passion for understanding other cultures. During high school, he had the opportunity to serve as a student ambassador to Holland and he traveled extensively with his family to destinations such as Europe.
Michael attended Desert Mountain High School in Scottsdale, where he was a top student and a four-year varsity tennis player.
Throughout high school, he was involved in community volunteer and leadership activities.
He also loved living in Scottsdale after coming here in first grade from Rochester, N.Y.
Michael was the light of our lives and his beautiful smile, his gentle spirit, his kind heart, and the love he gave to his family, his friends, and his cocker spaniels, Dusty and Desi, will live on in our hearts forever.
Michael was an angel in life and is an angel in heaven. A celebration of his life will be held on Saturday, April 25, 2009 at 10 a.m. at Messinger’s Mortuaries in Fountain Hills at 12065 N. Saguaro Boulevard.
A memorial fund in Michael’s name has been set up at Bank of America, account # 457013619468, to purchase a bench in honor and remembrance of Michael.
David Decker, 88, passed away on April 16, 2009 at Banner Hospice in Mesa. He was a resident at the Mountainside Assisted Living Home and had lived in Fountain Hills since 2000.
Dave was born on June 16, 1920 in Weehawken, N.J. In 1925 his family moved to a house in Haworth, N.J. that remained his home for the next 55 years.
An excellent athlete, Dave was captain of his high school tennis team and co-captain of his cross country team while attending Delhi College. After graduating from Delhi in 1940, Dave worked briefly on a farm and then became a carpenter in a New Jersey shipyard on the Hudson River.
His carpentry skills were put to good use when he joined the Navy in World War II and served as a Seabee in the South Pacific for three years.
After the war Dave became a general contractor running his own construction business for the next 35 years.
He met Helen Rautio at a dance in New York City in 1947, and it was love at first step, the two were married in January of 1948. The marriage lasted more than 53 years until Helen passed away in 2001.
A significant new chapter in Dave’s live began in 1980 when he and his wife retired and moved to Rio Rancho, N.M. After not having played tennis in nearly 40 years, Dave dusted off his racquet and became a force to reckon with on the seniors circuit. Over the next 20 years he would compete in tennis as well as running events in a number of city, state and national Senior Olympics competitions, winning many blue ribbons.
Dave’s love of Big Band music and his skills as a singer also blossomed under the New Mexico sun. He became an active participant in various community choruses in Rio Rancho, including the Meadowlark Singers and an aptly named quartet known as the Medicare Four. Dave struck gold warbling golden oldies, taking firsts in various singing venues, including in the entertainment competition of Senior Olympic events.
In 2000 Dave moved to Fountain Hills, where their daughter Chris, had been a resident since 1989. He continued playing tennis, as well as singing in the church choir at First Baptist Church of Fountain Hills and the Community Chorus of Fountain Hills.
He met Maxine Lundin at church and the two were married in 2002. In recent years Dave and Maxine would perform duets for housebound residents of Fountain Hills and patients in local hospices. One highlight of his years in Fountain Hills was meeting the late John Woodruff, a gold medalist in the 800-meter run at the 1936 Olympic Games, who had been his idol as a boy.
Dave was a member of the Rio Rancho Honor Guard from 1985 to 1995, and was a life member of the American Post Disabled American Veterans Chapter in Rio Rancho.
He is survived by his wife, Maxine Decker of Fountain Hills; daughter, Christine Cipolaro of Fountain Hills; son, Edmund Decker of Irvington, N.Y.; grandchildren, Wendy Cipolaro of Portland, Ore., Janine Cipolaro of Seattle, Wash.; Thomas Cipolaro of Fountain Hills, and Julia Decker of Irvington, N.Y.; and nephews, James Wren of Montvale, N.J., David Wren of Bloomington, Ind., and Jeffrey Wren of Old Town, Maine.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be sent to Banner Hospice, 1325 N. Fiesta Boulevard, Suite 1, Gilbert, AZ 85233.
Carl Oscar Jacobson, 95, a resident of Rio Verde, and Shorewood, Minn., passed away April 20, 2009, under Hospice care.
Born in Duluth, Minn., he served his country during WWII as a captain in the US Army. His professional life was in the printing industry where he became national sales director of the Flint Ink Co. and later founded Northern Ink, a very successful ink manufacturing company.
He was an avid golfer and a two time Duluth City Caddy Champion. He was most proud of his family.
He was preceded in death by his first wife, Margaret “Marge” and second wife, Phyllis. He is survived by his longtime dearest friend and companion, Grace Roepke, of Rio Verde; his daughter, Beverly Coppersmith (husband Thomas L.) of Waterford, Minn.; son, Gary Jacobson (wife Lidell) of Goodyear, Ariz.; stepchildren, Judy Sanders of Bend, Ore., and Frederick Sanders (wife Linda) of Hopkins, Minn.; and grandchildren, Derek and Carly Jacobson, and Thomas C. Coppersmith and John Sanders.
Visitation will be at Messinger Fountain Hills Chapel, 12065 Saguaro Blvd. on Thursday, April 23, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., concluding with services at 1 p.m. Burial will be in Hopkins, Minn.
In lieu of flowers, his family would like any contributions be made to Hospice of the Valley, 1510 E. Flower Street, Phoenix, AZ. 85014
Michael Don Knapik, 53, of Fountain Hills, passed away Thursday, April 16, 2009 at his home after a four-month battle with cancer.
He was born in Cleveland, Ohio and moved with his wife, Terese (Homan) to Scottsdale in 1980 then to Fountain Hills in 1983.
Mike was a computer scientist, author of Developing Intelligent Agents for Distributed Systems and Everything Elephants. He was often consulted as an elephant collectible expert.
Mike will be missed by his loving wife, Terese; brother, Don of Scottsdale; sister, Pat (Dick) Jones of Sharon, Pa.; as well as Terese’s family; Ron (Maryann) Homan, Coldwater, Ohio; Virgil Homan, Celina, Ohio; Carl (Diana) DeMange, Versailles, Ohio; Judy Link, Fountain Hills; Dr. Dave (Lucy) Poeppelman, Ottawa, Ohio; Leon (Kathy) Homan, New Bremen, Ohio; David Homan, Chandler; Dennis (Helen) Schattel, Buena Park, Calif.: Rick (Marlene) Brunswick, Forest, Ohio; Joseph (Nancy) Homan, Johnstown, Pa.; Mark (Lisa) Seitz, Maria Stein, Ohio; Craig (Ann) Nesbit, Phoenix; Tim (Brenda) Homan, Horton, Kan.; plus numerous nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews on both sides of the family.
Special thanks to the Bercel family, especially Jack, Rose, Mary Jane and Mark, for their love, support and friendship.
The family is honoring Mike’s request for no services and asked that any donations be made to www.MorrisAnimalFoundation.org or www.hospiceofthevalley.org.
Richard G. Smith
Richard G. Smith, 71, passed away April 14, 2009 at his home in Fountain Hills after an 11-year battle with lung cancer.
Richard was born in East Lansing, Mich. He graduated from Michigan State University with a degree in mechanical engineering followed by advanced studies at George Washington University.
In a career spanning 30 years Richard worked for various organizations within the Department of Defense.
Richard is survived by his wife of 46 years, Claudia; daughters, Wendy (Nelson) Keimer and Natasha Mangano, both of Fountain Hills; four grandsons, Devon and Justin Keimer, and Nicholas and Christopher Mangano; his sister, Connie Dumas of Scottsdale; and brother, Robert Smith of Flagstaff.
Richard loved the outdoors. His favorite activities were fishing, especially fly fishing, hunting and hiking his acreage in the Flagstaff area. He loved having a thriving green yard, even in Arizona. When giving directions to his home, he would say: “It’s easy to find, I’m the only idiot on the street with grass.”
He also took great delight and pride in his roses and vegetable gardens.
Although an Arizona resident for 39 years, Richard remained loyal to his Michigan State Spartans, the Pistons, the Red Wings and Lions. His eyes lit up with glee when involved in any competitive endeavor.
He had enormous will power. His determination to fight his cancer was strong and unending. In November 2008, he said to his hospice nurse: “I didn’t weep when I was on top of the mountain, nor shall I weep now that I am in the valley.”
A celebration of Richard’s life was held at St. Anthony on the Desert Episcopal Church on Sunday, April 19.
In lieu of flowers please consider a contribution in Richard’s name to Hospice of the Valley, 1510 E. Flower Street, Phoenix, AZ 85014, an organization worth its weight in gold.
Messinger Fountain Hills Mortuary handled arrangements.
Valentine R. Baird
Valentine R. Baird passed away on Oct. 21, 2009 at her home in Flushing, Mich. She was born Sept. 17, 1920 in Flint, Mich. to George Zagulski and Sophia Sorenson.
She and her husband, John J. (Jack) Baird, moved to Fountain Hills in the late 1980s and lived between here and Florida for the next 18 years. Jack preceded her in death on Aug. 2, 1999, as did her sister, Martha Dreasky, on March 18, 1987.
Valentine is survived by her sister, Lydia Daniels of Flushing, Mich.; three sons, David Baird of Olympia, Wash., John M. Baird and his wife, Barbara, of Queen Creek, and William (Bill) Baird and his wife, Pamela, of Harbor Springs, Mich.; a grandson, Jason Baird and his wife, Leanne; great-grandsons, Jack Baird, Doug and Joel Brewer of Fountain Hills; granddaughters, Jaden, Jordann and Britney Doggett of Queen Creek, Ashley Baird of Nice, France; and various nieces, nephews and cousins.
Cremation has taken place and a memorial service will be held at Messinger Fountain Hills Mortuary, 12065 Saguaro Blvd. at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2010.
The family requests that any donations in Valentine’s name be made to Hospice of the Valley, 1510 E. Flower St., Phoenix, AZ 85014.
Laura Lee Kotlowski
Laura Lee Kotlowski (Lascio), 49, of Fountain Hills passed away on Dec. 20, 2009.
She died peacefully while in the care of Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn after an extended battle with diabetes and kidney disease.
Laura was born in Chicago, Ill. on May 1, 1960 to William and Rosemary Lascio of Fountain Hills.
Growing up in Carpentersville, Ill. she met and married her husband, Scott Kotlowski, on Feb. 15, 1980.
With their children, Gregory, 29, and Heather, 25, they came west to Fountain Hills in 1986.
In addition to her husband, parents, and children she is survived by her brothers, Tom, of Lake in the Hills, Ill., Jim and Bill; and sister, Patricia, all of Fountain Hills; and son-in-law, Jason Sheets. Also numerous nieces and nephews; and, most importantly, her granddaughter, LeeLee, age three.
Services were handled by Messinger’s Fountain Hills Mortuary.
Respects can be paid in three ways.
If you are diabetic or care for someone who is, keep your blood sugar under control. Become an organ donor. Make a donation to the Arizona Kidney Foundation (602-840-1644) in Laura’s name.