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Class Notes | Obituaries
Showing obituaries submitted in last 6 months by graduates in the
Vincent A. DiTomaso ’50 (electrical engineering) died of heart failure peacefully in his sleep, surrounded by family on December 14, 2016. When Vince arrived at Santa Clara as a first year student, he joined a unique class of budding engineers—not just the usual fresh-faced high school grads, but also seasoned military veterans resuming their lives at the end of World War II. During his time at Santa Clara, Vince was a member of the Engineering Society, served as A.I.E.E. President, and was a member of the Saber Society, R.O.T.C. The Class of ’50 graduated a record 70 engineers who have gathered every single year since their graduation. Vince and fellow Broncos serving in the military even held a reunion in Korea in 1951. In 1964 Vince opened DiTomaso & Associates, an electrical engineering consulting firm in Van Nuys, California. Later, he became a principal with the consulting firm of Dalan Engineers in Northridge, and in 1997 was appointed to the State of California’s Board of Registration for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors. In 2002, he was awarded the School of Engineering’s highest honor, the Distinguished Engineering Alumnus Award. His son, Joe DiTomasso said, “We loved our father and his energy for life and his heart full of love. He very much loved Santa Clara University and I believe the proudest day of his life was when he received the Engineering School award. It is because of the lessons learned and the education received at Santa Clara that my father became the great man that he was.” Notes of condolence may be sent to the DiTomasso Family in care of the Department of Electrical Engineering.
Thomas L. Sapunor Jr. '50 appears today here on what he referred to as the "Irish Sports Page." He was born and raised in Sacramento, the middle son of Thomas and Myrtle Fay Sapunor. He attended Marshall Elementary, St. Francis of Assisi Elementary and Christian Brothers High School. Upon graduating, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy. After his honorable discharge, he enrolled at Santa Clara University, graduating in 1950. His beloved bride of 65 years, Johanna Hammans, and Tom began their married life together in San Francisco, where their first three children, Timothy, Sally and Jeanne were born. During that time, he survived a bout with polio that hospitalized him for months. Tom's promotion at Cal Western Life Insurance brought the family back to Sacramento, where sons Peter and Stephen '82 were born. Tom continued at Cal Western while attending night school at McGeorge College of Law. Upon admittance to the bar, he began his career as a Deputy District Attorney for Sacramento County. After working with his brother John '41 (Treva Sapunor '41) at the Wilke, Fleury & Sapunor law firm, he continued his legal career working as an Administrative Law Judge for the State of California for over 20 years. A quintessential gentleman and family man, Tom was a devoted friend, son, brother, husband, father and "Baba" who was proud of his Irish and Croatian immigrant heritage. He cherished time spent at the shores of Tahoe, Carmel, Pacific Grove, Pajaro Dunes, Little River and Angel Island, and at Uncle George's cabin in Strawberry. Tom was an ardent supporter of his children's and grand-children's artistic and sporting pursuits; he enjoyed hunting, fishing, barbequing, cocktails, Gilbert and Sullivan, crosswords, Steve Nash and Kurt Rambis, sketching, reading, and traveling. One of Tom's favorite trips was journeying to Ireland in 1993 with old pals Delaney and Meyers. His favorite movie was "Dawn Patrol" with David Niven and Errol Flynn. Tom loved animals, especially his childhood hunting dog "Buff" and in later life, his Cavaliers Jane and Lucy. Tom was a faithful parishioner at Sacred Heart Church, serving as a lector for decades. In addition to his parents, Tom is predeceased by his uncle George Sapunor, brother the Hon. John M. Sapunor, sister Ellen, nephews Richard Thomas and Michael Benjamin Sapunor, niece Nancy Sapunor, mother-in-law Peggie Dayton, and son-in-law Tim Pfaff. Survived by wife Johanna, brother Dr. Philip Sapunor (Patricia), children Tim (Cathy), Sally, Jeanne (Ralph Davis), Pete (Suzy) and Stephen '82 (Allison), grandchildren Zack, Rita, Greg, Christine (Yosihai), Grace, Oona, Max, Caitlin, Hannah, Nicholas, Matthew, Rob (Katie), John, and Michael, and great-grandchild Alex. Also survived by nephew the Hon. Jack V. Sapunor '70 (Vicki), nephew Michael Sapunor (Nancy), niece Jenny Gysin (Warner), and grandnephews Patrick, Adam, Leo and Oscar.
Arthur L. Shiffrar '50, 89, of Fremont, CA, died Easter Sunday, March 27, 2016. Born in Nipomo, CA, in 1926, Arthur was the sixth of Mary Buda Shiffrar and Joseph Shiffrar’s 12 children. From an early age, he adored the bounty of the Central Coast, enjoying hunting, rock hounding, fishing, and clamming.
Arthur graduated from Arroyo Grande High School and served as a Navy ship mechanic in the Pacific during World War II. With the help of a football scholarship and the GI Bill, Arthur graduated with a degree in business administration from Santa Clara University. In 1949, he married his long time sweetheart, Ruth Walsh. They settled in Fremont, where they lived for 50 years.
Ruth and Arthur enjoyed a wonderful life. With family and friends, they celebrated with laughter, drinks, tall tales, and Santa Maria-style BBQ. They traveled the world, most notably to Slovenia where they created new bonds with Arthur’s extended family.
Arthur established Art’s Cart Trucking in 1960. As the company grew, he mentored many young drivers. Art’s Cart trucks could be seen throughout California for nearly 30 years. Ruth and Arthur also established and successfully ran Gen Mar, a bed frame manufacturing company.
While he loved driving, especially sports cars, deer hunting was Arthur’s lifelong passion. He hunted simply, with an old rifle, a rich knowledge of animal behavior, and a desire for a clean shot. In later years, he enjoyed attending antique truck shows.
Arthur was pre-deceased by his wife, Ruth, and three siblings (Mary, Donald, and Joe). Arthur is survived by his daughters, Margaret and Genevieve, by Donna Boomershine, his companion in later life, by many siblings (Martin, Louise, George, Harold, Betty, Dolores, Barbara, and Richard) and by dozens of nieces and nephews.
Jack Robert Marasti '51 passed away at Mercy Hospital in Merced, CA, on October 8, 2016, surrounded by his family and loved ones. Born in Grindstone, PA, he was the youngest of three children by Alex and Jenny Marasti. After the family relocated to Merced, he entered John Muir Elementary as a 3rd grader and graduated from Merced Union High School District in 1947 with the honor of receiving the MUHSD Science and Math Award. Jack then attended Santa Clara University for his undergraduate degree, graduating in 1951 at the top of his class. After serving as an officer in the U.S. Army during the Korean War, he attended U.C. Berkeley's Haas School of Business. At the age of 24, he became an auto dealer, starting the Dodge/Chrysler/Plymouth family business which he successfully ran with his wife Patricia Marasti for 35 years - eventually becoming the second oldest Chrysler dealership on the west coast. After the passing of his beloved wife of 52 years, Jack stayed active and contributed to his community by becoming a substitute teacher for MUHSD. He loved substitute teaching and sharing his vast knowledge and experience with the students. He proudly continued to substitute teach until his passing at 87 years old. He is survived by his children Noreen Bianchi, Michael Marasti '75 (Santa), Peggy LaRocque (Brian), and Robert Marasti. His son Mark Marasti preceded him in death. He also leaves behind 9 grandchildren, including Richard L. Bianchi '96, 7 great-grandchildren, and many nephews and nieces. Jack is also survived by his dear friend Lydia Lobdell. He was a true family man, patriarch of his family, and will be deeply missed.
Claude John Boyd, Jr. '52 passed away on November 18, 2016. He was a proud graduate of St. Ignatius High School and graduated with a degree in Electrical Engineering from Santa Clara University in 1952. He worked as an engineer at Sperry, Lockheed, Fairchild Instrument, Dalmo Victor and, most notably, IBM where he retired in 1990. He leaves his beloved wife, Evelyn Boyd, and his family, son Brian Boyd and Brian's wife Loriann Casillas and grandsons Connor Boyd, Kyle Boyd and Cameron Boyd as well as Claude's devoted daughter Corine DeLeon, Corine's husband Joe and grandsons Christian DeLeon, Alexander DeLeon, Jevan DeLeon and granddaughters Rebecca DeLeon and Marciella DeLeon Cantu.
Frank Brandon Maus, Jr. '53, known to firneds as "Brandon", passed away on March 8, the day before his 86th birthday.
Born in Petaluma, California, to Frank and Helen Maus, Brandon attended Santa Clara University and graduated with a degree in Mechanical Engineering.
Upon graduation, Brandon served in the United States Army where he worked in the White Sands Proviing Groudn testing Nike missiles and atomic warheads. After his service, Brandon pursued a second degree in Electrical Engineering.
In 1956, he began a long and storied career with United Airlines where he led engineering teams that work on or helped design countless iconic passenger airplanes, rising to the role of Chief Engineer for United at the The Boeing Company. Brandon went on to assist Lockheed in producing the initial Boeing space shuttle carrier and served as lead engineer and technical consultant for the NASA Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA). He received a number of accolades and awards for his work, and was known as an industry expert having published many reports and manuals. As a testament to his efforts on the Boeing 777, one of the first of those planes off the production line was dubbed the "F. Brandon Maus".
Brandon enjoyed many hobbies and pursuits, including extensive travels around the world with his wife Patricia. He was an avid model builder, active gardener, talented home chef, and dear friend to countless people.
Brandon will be lovingly remembered by his wife of 59 years, Partricia (nee Stockholm), sons Stephen (Debra) and Stuart (Helena), and beloved grandchildren, Andrew and Katherine. His cousin Catherine A. Johnstone '76 also graduated from Santa Clara.
Brandon was predeceased by his brother, Walter.
Frank "Bruce" Oneto J.D. '56 of Boulder Creek, California, 91, died Tuesday June 30, 2015 from congestive heart failure at Dignity Health, Santa Cruz, CA.
He is survived by his wife of 43 years, Jeri (Green) Oneto, and sisters Jane (Chuck Irwin) and Marilou Ellis, daughter Laura Hamill, sons Michael Oneto (Lisa) and Robert Oneto (Karen), step-daughter Jackie Jones (Mike), grandchildren Tim Jones (Amber), Suzie (Jake Palmer), Roy, Simone, Brook and Mikaela Oneto, and five great grandchildren: Colton, Kyla, Kendall Jones, and Landen and Grady Palmer. Bruce was preceded in death by brother John Oneto '56 and step-son Jeff Green.
Bruce was born in Madera December 23, 1923 and was the son of Frank and Caralou Oneto. He was raised in Madera, Sebastopol, San Francisco, and Fresno, California Bruce attended Fresno High graduating in 1941.
Following graduation Bruce served as a corporal in the Army during World War II. He was stationed in the Pacific with 593rd Joint Assault Signal Company (JASCO) and received 4 battle stars for activity duty in Bismarck Archipelago, Leyte, Luzon, and Okinawa, and received a presidential unit citation. He was honorably discharged in 1945.
Upon returning to civilian life Bruce attended college at Stanford University and Santa Clara University receiving a law degree from Santa Clara in 1956.
In his early career Bruce practiced law and became a partner at the Ruffo Law firm in San Jose, California. Following a successful career at the Ruffo Law Firm, Bruce began his own practice in San Jose and Brookdale, California.
In 1974 Bruce retired from law practice and began his next career as an employee and manager of Park Mutual Water Company in Boulder Creek, California where he would begin a lifelong pursuit as an outspoken advocate of sustainable water policy.
Bruce became involved in a wide range of organizations to further his passion for sensible and sustainable management of our natural resources. Among them: Water Advisory Commission for State of California and Santa Cruz County, and Watershed Institute Advisor for San Lorenzo Valley High District. In addition, Bruce held the position of Fair Director for the 14th district Santa Cruz County Fair. A position appointed by governors Davis, Schwarzenegger and Brown. He held this position since 2001.
In his later years Bruce dedicated himself to promoting the principles of sustainable agriculture and became a member of the Watsonville Ag History Project and the Santa Cruz County Fair Heritage Foundation. He and his wife Jeri would frequently promote and contribute to fundraising events, graciously offering their abundant talent at preparing home cooked meals, prepared with dedication and lots of love. Bruce and his wife Jeri were recipients of the 2013 Hammer-Marcum award honoring two residents of the San Lorenzo Valley who have given hundreds of hours of volunteer time to improve the quality of life of local residents.
Bruce was a member in the following organizations: San Lorenzo Valley Museum, Valley Women's Club, and Sons in Retirement. His interests and hobbies included golf, bowling, and woodworking. Bruce loved to teach his family and friends how to prepare homemade ravioli which he learned from his grandmother Nona. And Bruce would often provide demonstrations in how to prepare ravioli at the Santa Cruz County Fair.
Bruce was also a volunteer groundskeeper for his grandson's little league team. He did this because he wanted to be sure the kids had a safe field to play on. He kept the field up for four generations of little leaguers.
Bruce liked to work with his hands and was very proud of the work he did to remodel his home, using reclaimed wood from redwood water tanks.
Above all else Bruce embraced the importance of family and the joy that he received from his wife Jeri and their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. To him, they were the bread of life.
Stanley James Louis '57: December 19, 1935 to July 6, 2016.
Harold "Hal" John Kopp '58, age 79, of Harrison City, diead peacefully at home surrounded by his family on Thursday, February 11, 2016. Hal was born on March 31, 1936, in San Francisco, CA, to the late Alvin and Lorraine (Perry) Kopp. Beloved husband of 55 years to Florian (Maroney) Kopp. Loving father of Christopher C. (Debbie) of Fort Worth, TX, Alvin B. '87 (Lynn) of Wake Forest, NC, Lawrence J. Kopp "attended 1986" of Denton, TX and Gregory (Siobhan) Kopp of Damascus, MD; grandfather of Justin, Trevis and Griffin Kopp, Megan, Alexander and Abigail Kopp, Lauren, Leah and Ryan Kopp, Emily, Matthew, Nicholas and Mackenzie Kopp; brother of the late David Kopp. Hal was a US Army veteran and was a member of St. Barbara Catholic Church.