Pleasanton Weekly

Community Pulse - April 23, 2010



Shirley Sue Simmons, a 23-year resident of Pleasanton, died peacefully at home with her family by her side on April 16 after a short battle with cancer.

She was born Aug. 2, 1945, in Monterey and it remained her favorite place for life. She became a self taught baker extraordinaire, among her many other talents. Volunteering at Alviso Adobe in Pleasanton for Eric Nicolas and being "grandma" at Forest Home Farms in San Ramon was her passion. She was also a longtime member of the Order of the Eastern Star, Oak Leaf Chapter No. 8. She retired from Kraft Foods as executive assistant to the western area vice president. She was loved by all and lived a life with no regrets.

She was preceded in death by her father, Angelo DiVecchia, and is survived by her loving husband of 47 years Ron, her highschool sweetheart; sons Mike (Kelly), Tim (Michelle), Steve (Christine); seven granddaughters; her mother Idris (Sue) DiVecchia; two brothers, two sisters and many friends.

Friends and family are invited to a Celebration of Life at Graham-Hitch Mortuary in Pleasanton at 2 p.m., Friday, April 30. Contributions in her name can be made to the American Cancer Society.


A memorial service will be held Saturday, April 24, to celebrate the life of Laura Kay Mayo, who died Nov. 12 in Oakdale after a long illness. She was 47.

Born in Oakland, Ms. Mayo spent her formative years in Pleasanton and graduated from Amador Valley High School. She loved playing soccer in the youth program and continued as a young adult. She was gifted with an artist's view of the world and the talent that goes with it.

She is survived by two children, son Benjamin Wigley, serving in the U.S. Army, and daughter Sadie Conaty-Mayo of Danville; parents George and Dorothy Mayo of Pleasanton; sister Christina Anderson and her husband, Brian, of Cottonwood; brothers Jim Mayo of Pleasanton and Ed Mayo and his wife, Tina, of Livermore; and many nieces and nephews.

The service will be at 3 p.m. at Centerpointe Presbyterian Church, 3410 Cornerstone Court.


Samuel J. Fry, a Pleasanton resident, died April 12 at the age of 83.

Mr. Fry was born Jan. 13, 1927, in Pierre, S.D., on a farm along with five siblings. He joined the Armed Forces in 1945 and served 20 years, retiring in 1967. The following day he was employed with World Airways as a flight engineer, where he worked for 23 years, retiring in 1991.

Throughout his world travels and devotion to his family, he managed to have a positive and comforting spin on things. Mr. Fry was an inspiration to most but a gift to others, beyond anyone's expectation.

He is survived by his wife Mary Louise Fry; children Sid and Samiel Fry; daughter-in-law Lynda Efros Fry; and grandchildren Jesse Lee Samuel and Marlee Joanna Fry.

Services were held at Graham-Hitch Mortuary on April 20. A Memorial is scheduled for 2 p.m., Saturday, April 24, at 3126 Lansdown Court in Pleasanton.


Courine Theresa Rachel Warren Mathews, age 78, died in her Pleasanton home April 13 in the presence of her loving husband Al Mathews. She had waged a three-year battle against breast cancer, fighting it with the same grace and elegance in which she lived her life.

Mrs. Mathews was born in Sioux City, Iowa, to Ben and Evelyn Wisott on July 20, 1931. Her family relocated to California in 1942. She attended Castlemont High School in Oakland, and graduated from UC Berkeley in 1953 with a bachelor's degree in Fine Art and Interior Design. While at Berkeley, she met her future husband, Fred Warren. They were married in 1953 and later settled in Livermore, where they raised their family.

In 1968, she went back to school at San Francisco State earning a master's in Early Childhood Education. She taught preschool at St Bartholomew's and Livermore Playschool, and then went on to work as Director of Hill and Dale Preschool at Camp Parks. Mrs. Mathews was one of the founding members of Livermore's HeadStart program, and she poured her energy and her passion into making sure that every child was offered a preschool education. After Fred's death in 1995, she reconnected with her junior high classmate, Al Mathews. Courine and Al were married in 1999 and went on to enjoy their life together, traveling to Kauai, playing golf, entertaining, and being with family.

Mrs. Mathews is survived by her husband Al Mathews; son Tim Warren and his wife Maureen of San Diego, daughter Terry Chavez and her husband Jose of Sunnyvale; her three grandchildren, Heather Warren, and Michael and Ashley Chavez; sisters Sally Greenspan (Stan) and Marlene Brown, sister-in-law Jean Cooper; her aunt Vivian Smith; numerous nieces and nephews; Al's sons David (Grace), Tom (Judy), and daughter Ann (Kirk).

A Celebration of Life honoring her was held at 1 p.m. April 22 Castlewood Country Club. Donations may be made to Kaiser Hospice, The Sam Harry Foundation, American Cancer Society, or any charity meaningful to donors.


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