Author Archive

Gone But Not Forgotten

James Boydston

James Floid Boydston, 90, passed away October 17, 2020. He was born in Los Angeles, California on March 31,1930 and graduated from George Washington High School in 1948. He served in the US Air Force from 1951-1955. He worked as a Vocational Instructor in the California Prison System from 1969-1979. He retired from Riverside City Sign Shop in 1999 after 16 years. In his retirement he enjoyed wood carving with the Wood Chuckers carving group and traveling. He had been a member of Wesley United Methodist Church since 1975 where he sang in the choir and served on several committees. On June 11, 1955 he married Jean Talbot who he met at a USO picnic on June 27, 1954 in Phoenix, Arizona. During their marriage they lived in Los Angeles, La Puente, Phoenix, Tehachapi, and Riverside. He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Jean; his daughters Joni and Kathleen; sons Steve and Jeff; eight grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents, Floid and Mildred Boydston; sisters Sylvia and Lillian; and his brother Bob.

Michael Figueroa

Michael Otto Figueroa, 76, passed away Sunday, October 11, 2020, at his Fillmore Home, in the loving arms of his wife, son, daughter, and brother. He was born December 26, 1943, in Los Angeles, California to Jessie Albert Figueroa and Elsie Lea. He married Andrea Ashcraft-Hightower October 10, 1987, at the Fern Grotto, Kapaa, Kauai, Hawaii. He was born and raised in East Los Angeles, California and attended Lourdes Elementary School and Cantwell High School and Cal-State San Bernardino University. He continues his education and obtained his Master’s Degree in 1985. He lived in Southern California until his retirement in 1994, when he moved to Seligman, Arizona to pursue his lifelong dream of becoming a Cowboy. He moved his “ranch” to Fillmore, UT, in 2009. Prior to completing his college education he joined the U.S. Army, where he was promoted quickly to Lieutenant, and served as a Combat infantryman in Vietnam, 1967 to 1968. He received two Bronze Star medals for Valor and Bravery in combat Upon his return from military service, he joined the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department as a Deputy Sheriff. Several years into his law enforcement career, he transferred to the City of Riverside Police Department in California; where he rose to the rank of Deputy Chief of Police, before his retirement in 1994. He loved to play the guitar, clarinet and harmonica. He took up horseback riding and roping during his time in Arizona. He was a member of several Old West Re-enactment groups and performed cowboy skits in California, Arizona and Utah. He had a great fondness for Hawaii and travelled there with Andrea and his children on many, many trips. His most violent dislike was onion, in any form and his greatest love was dark chocolate. Michael was an accomplished runner for middle distance races and won too many races, trophies and medals to try and list. He was invited to run in competitions all across the United States, and as far away as Japan. His words and actions were inspirational to all who knew him. While he was a mentor to so many, his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren were his pride and joy. Nothing gave him more pleasure than imparting bits of wisdom into their lives. He is survived by his wife, Andrea; still living in Fillmore, his son Jeff with his wife Karyn; his daughter Noelle, with her husband, Micah Harmer, of Riverside County, California; Step-daughter Randi, with her husband David Lucas, of Peoria, Arizona; grandchildren: Dylan Figueroa of Oceanside, CA; Cameron Figueroa of McCall, Idaho; Brittyn Figueroa, of Riverside, CA; Max Harmer of Upland, CA; Madison Harmer of Temecula, CA and Camp Pendleton, CA; Peter and Brendan Carlson, of Peoria, AZ; Brother: Art Figueroa of Chico, CA; and 7 great-grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his parents and brother, James A Figueroa. 

Donald Freeman

Jan. 29, 1933 – Sept. 5, 2020 Attorney at Law Born in Springtown, AR. Lived in San Diego from 1941-1999. Attended National City Junior High School – Sweetwater Union High School, San Diego State College – US Army 1953-1955. UCLA SCHOOL OF LAW – Practiced Law in San Diego 1960-1999 – Practiced Law in Hemet 1999-2018 retired because of heart condition. His parents, brother and sister preceded him in death. He leaves behind his domestic partner of 40 years Barbara Kirkwood and a nephew Dale Rosenbaum of Hemet and 2 nieces: Sherry Setera and Susan Ivanoff, both of Chico, CA. 

Jose Leon

Jose Alfonso Leon, known as Joe to his friends and family, was born January 1, 1927, in Ontario, California, the son of Jesus and Rita Leon, and passed away on October 9, 2020, in his family home. He was 93 years old. Joe was the youngest of three, joining his sister Mary and older brother Henry, who experienced the hardship of losing their father when Joe was two years old. Raised to work hard, Joe developed many skills and talents, which he turned into opportunities to learn and grow. He was a history buff, an opera fan, a bowler, a baker, a cook, a fisherman, a patriot, a Marine, a devout Catholic and a lifelong Democrat. He met Kazuko Takatsuji when serving in the Marine Corp during the Korean conflict, on leave in Kyoto. Despite the language barrier, they began their life together in marriage in Japan, returning to San Bernardino and raising their family of four children: Robert, Deborah, Nancy, and Martin. They moved to Corona in 1964, where Joe and Kazuko (aka Susie) ran Joe’s Bakery for many years. Joe also taught commercial baking to the inmates at The California Rehabilitation Center, where his compassion for those who struggled with addiction, along with his strong work ethic, helped turn lives around. Joe understood that some folks need a second chance sometimes, and even a third or fourth. He later worked for Von’s and the popular Chicken Pie Shop in Anaheim, managing their bakeries. Joe worked until he was 87 because he loved to work and be around people. Joe was preceded in death by his sister Mary and her husband Pete Resendez, and by his brother Henry and his wife Gloria. Joe is survived by his wife, Kazuko, his sons Robert (Nancy), and Martin, and his daughters, Nancy Pacheco (Tony), and Deborah, who has devoted her life to her parents, taking care of them at home. His grandchildren, who survive him are Jason, Melissa, Kate, Alison, Kyle, Kelee, and Martin Jr., and eleven great grandchildren, as well as nieces and nephews.

Edward Wall

Emmett was born December 4, 1950 to Edward Elliott and Helen Bell (Edwards) Wall, who preceded him in death. Emmett passed away at the age of 69 in his home with his wife, Shelley and his son, Robbie, by his side. He graduated in 1969 from Norte Vista High School, Riverside CA and he played baseball and basketball, GO BRAVES! Emmett gave of himself serving his country in the Vietnam war, U.S. Army 101st Airborne E4 Specialist 3rd Battalion 187th Infantry. He loved God, his family, and his country! He always told his family he loved them! He was married to Marilyn Green in 1970 in which he had his first daughter, Elizabeth, who has five children and three grandchildren giving Emmett his first great grandchildren. They divorced in 1986. In 1987 he married Margaret Cormack in Lake Tahoe. They had four boys and one stepson. Margaret preceded Emmett in death on June 30, 1998. He then married Shelley Kroening on January 14, 2017 in which they enjoyed his last years together attending church, reading the Bible, (he read the Bible through 8 times), attending hockey and baseball games, and enjoyed their times in the outdoors! He had a passion for sports and was an avid fan of the LA Dodgers at an early age and later was a season ticket holder of the Ontario Reign professional ice hockey team based in Ontario, California. He attended games with family and had a large collection of baseballs caught and signed by the team! But coaching his sons in Little League and baseball at Riverside Christian High School was what brought him happiness and attending his stepson’s band performances. It was one of his great joys in life. Emmett worked as a truck driver for the family’s company, Wall’s Hauling Service from 1975 to 2009. He would rather have been a Forest Ranger but always happy to be with and help the family. At an early age Emmett was baptized by his grandfather, Reverend Edward Elliott Wall, Sr. He attended church regularly at Victoria Community in Riverside with his sons, his mother, Helen, and sister Carol Hunter. Emmett rededicated his life to the Lord while attending Victoria Community Church. When his church relocated he attended Harvest Christian Fellowship Church in Riverside with his family. He volunteered to help with the Harvest Church New Zealand Crusade with his sons, Robbie and Ian in June of 2011. He even considered a move to New Zealand some day where there was little crime and a beautiful country! Emmett loved traveling with his sons and sister, Carol, (who was the second driver if needed and bought snacks for everyone) on several road trips seeing all the National Parks, and other sightseeing stops! They took lots of pictures, had long days of driving but he never complained. He was just happy he could share the United States of America with his sons. He was a proud American! His cousin, Patricia K. Horsley Salsman, Fresno, CA remembers him as always being the nicest person whenever they included her in their trips to several places in the states when she was a child. They were the same age with Emmett being a few months older! They went to her house to stay and swim and the Horsley’s went to Riverside and always went to Disneyland. Great times with these two families throughout the early years. He is survived by his wife, Shelley Kroening Wall; five sons, Eddy Wall and his wife, Autumn from Meridian, Idaho; Christopher Wall and Alexandra Torres, Riverside, CA; lan Wall and Robbie Wall, Riverside, CA, Bill Preci, (stepson) and wife, Charlotte, from Homeland, CA; three daughters, Elizabeth Montero and husband, Greg from Riverside, CA; Ashley Gonzales and husband, Gerardo, from Corona, CA; Nicole Briggs (stepdaughter) and husband, Beau, from Rancho Cucamonga, CA; 19 grandchildren and three great grandchildren. He is also survived by one sister, Carol Wall Hunter, two brothers, David and Robert Wall, Riverside, CA. Emmett will be missed by his family and extended family!

Louis Sporrer

Louis Lavern Sporrer (Lou), a true hero to our country, passed away on July 30, 2020 at the age of ninety-three.

Lou was born in Manning, Iowa on April 6, 1927 to his loving parents, Edward and Agnes Sporrer. Their family made the move to California in 1939 where Lou fortuitously met and married his Inglewood High School sweetheart, and love of his life, Norna Mae Russell. The couple married in 1947, and had just celebrated their 73rd year of an amazing marriage on June 15.

To say Lou’s life was a rich tapestry of hard work and dedication, would be a drastic understatement. He courageously served his country as a proud WWII Veteran of the 6th Marine Division, JASCO Company. He bravely fought in the Battle of Okinawa, receiving a Certificate of Honor for being one of the first soldiers in the Marine Division to land in Japan for the Japanese Surrender.

After returning from his military service, Lou went on to obtain his Bachelor’s Degree from Loyola University, and later earned his Master’s Degree from Pepperdine University. Lou started his career at Standard Oil, but at twenty-two, found his heroic calling into service once again for the Los Angeles Police Department. During his time at the LAPD, Lou contributed to many firsts in the department; however, he was most passionate about unifying his community, and dedicated himself to the Youth and Police Explorer Program. He was also a big supporter of the newly developed D.A.R.E. program. Lou proudly served as the President of the Peace Officer’s Association, and as a member of the International Chiefs of Police (POST).

Lou rose through the ranks and ended his 30 year career as Assistant Chief of Police of LAPD. Although retired, his dedication to service did not end there. Lou went on to serve as a consultant for the California Round Table, was Director of Security for an exclusive, private country club, and his security expertise was sought after when he was asked to become Assistant Director of Security for the 1984 Olympics.

Lou soon combined his love for the sport of golf with his natural leadership ability, when he became the President of the Acquisition Corporation for IWCC, where he also served on the Board of Governors.

Lou’s service to his country will forever be remembered by many, but his loss will be most greatly felt by his wife and family. Lou is preceded in death by his parents, and his grandson, Douglas Sporrer Junior. He is survived by his devoted and beloved wife Norna, and his adoring children, Lynn Sporrer, Douglas and Kelly Sporrer, as well as his loving grand and great-grand children, Pyper Sporrer-Johnson, Seth Sporrer, Montana and Harley Johnson, Paige Johnson, Drew Johnson, and Jakiya Sporrer.

James Carney

Ret. USAF Lt. Col James Michael Carney, 76, was finally reunited with the love of his life, Gail Carney on October 13, 2010. James was born in Philadelphia, Pa. on September 25, 1944. James joined the Air Force in 1966, flew combat missions in Vietnam and retired in 1987.
James was a loving father to his three sons; Christopher, Michael and James, a terrific grandfather (“Poppy”) to Chris Evergreen, Ryann Carney, Michael “Tyler” Carney, Duffy Adams, Maddison and Reaghan Carney and a loving great grandfather to Austin and Kaylin Carney. He was a caring younger brother to the late Joseph Carney and a caring older brother to his sisters Anne Carney and Cathy Regotti. He was a loving brother-in-law to Jerry and Audrey Carreiro, Rose Carney and Carlo Regotti. James also held high loving regards for Heather Carney, Marla Carney, Tiffany Carney, Shelli Crandall, Heather Lavalle, Elizabeth Adams and Kim Farris. James is also survived by many nieces and nephews.

Arnold Plese

Arnold (Arnie) Bartholomew Plese passed away in Victorville, California on September 17, 2020 at the age of 91 due to heart failure. Mr. Plese was born and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and served in the United States Army, US Coast Guard, and the Army Corp. of Engineers. He met the love of his life, Kathryn (Kaye) Lindblad, in Los Angeles and they were married in 1967. Arnie was a long-time resident of Victorville, California. He built his house there in 1978 and it remained his home. A man of constant curiosity, Arnie traveled the world. He had many hobbies, including photography, reading, and construction. Arnie was well known around Victorville. His kindness and enthusiasm for helping people was one of his many gifts. Arnie is survived by his brother, Matthew Plese, many nieces and nephews and their families.

Jack Worrell

Jack Lester Worrell grew up working hard from an early age in his parents’ automotive repair shop & was a well respected master engine builder for racing cars & boats. In 1970 he was drafted & went to Vietnam. When he got home he married Vicky, which lasted a short time. He opened a shop in Orange County, built & raced an econo A dragster. Jack’s parents, Doris & Bill Worrell & his brother Bill preceded him in death. Surviving family include brother Kevin Worrell, sisters Sue Houchen & Barbara Keller, nieces & nephews Marcie Houchen, Ali Walker, Jarrod Houchen, Tracy LaNae, Melissa Worrell, & Rebecca Newman, 14 great nieces & nephews, with aunts, uncles, and cousins in NJ & NC. 

Eugene Rasmussen

Eugene Allen Rasmussen was born in Harlan, Iowa on October 12, 1948 and passed away in Moreno Valley, California on October 1, 2020. He is survived by his loving wife of 52 years Evelyn “Penny” Rasmussen; 2 sons Andy & Jeff “Duffy”; two daughters Kristin & Cynthia; 14 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren. Eugene, a Vietnam Veteran, proudly served his country in the U.S. Navy and was discharged as a Petty Officer third class. He then went on to work as a Probation Officer in Riverside County for almost 40 years. His hobbies included reading James Patterson novels, taking trips to Laughlin, going on cruises, and rooting for the Raiders. Eugene was a great guy and enjoyed making others laugh. He was known for often telling bad dad jokes. His strong character, caring heart, and faith-filled spirit will be missed. 

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