Merrill “Tom” Thomas Spalding

Feb. 22, 1945-June 12, 2017

Merrill Thomas Spalding
Merrill Thomas Spalding

Friends and family will gather Friday, June 23, to say farewell and to celebrate the life of a beloved husband, father, grandfather and friend, Tom Spalding. Tom was a resident of La Cañada Flintridge for the past 43 years and passed away at the age of 72 on June 12.
Tom was born on Feb. 22, 1945, in Palo Alto, California. He graduated from Palo Alto High School in 1962, earned his bachelor’s degree from San Jose State University in 1966, and then attended Johns Hopkins University (SAIS) in Washington, D.C., where he earned a master’s degree in Sino/Soviet relations. This choice stemmed from his beloved father’s career as a history professor at Stanford.
After completing his education, he began his career as an international banker with Bank of America in San Francisco. This is where he met his wife of 47 years, Karen Brisa. Soon after their marriage in 1970, Tom made a career change into the insurance industry, which became his occupation for the remainder of his life. This career change gave Tom and Karen the opportunity to move to the East Coast where they welcomed their first son, Arthur, in 1971. In 1974, four months after their second son, Jonathan, was born they returned to the West Coast, where they began their permanent residency in La Cañada Flintridge.
Tom will be remembered for his great sense of humor, his passion for traveling, his love of sports and his wealth of knowledge which spanned many areas — he was a history buff and a trivia expert.
After multiple vacations in Cabo San Lucas and Aruba when Tom turned 50, he made a change in his lifestyle, deciding he wanted to travel more. This included many cruises with Karen and friends to various locations, including the Panama Canal, Australia/New Zealand, Normandy, the Black Sea and Russia. He enjoyed attending sporting events with his children, with some of the most memorable being the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles, Super Bowl XXVII at the Rose Bowl, and the NCAA college basketball Final Four in New Orleans in 2003. Tom also was involved in coaching his children in various sports, including baseball and soccer.
One of Tom’s greatest pleasures in recent years was spending time with his four grandchildren. No matter what was on his plate, he was willing to spend as much time as he could with them. He attended as many activities as possible, including Little League games, basketball games, play performances, awards ceremonies and other special events. “Tom Tom” was a constant presence in his grandchildren’s lives.
Tom is survived by his wife, Karen, his son and daughter-in-law, Arthur and Arin Spalding, and his son Jonathan Spalding. He is also survived by his loving grandchildren: Jackson, Oliver, Isabella and Sofia Spalding. He was preceded in death by his father, Merrill TenBroeck Spalding; his mother, Clara Smith Spalding; and his brother, Michael Spalding.
A memorial service is planned for Friday, June 23, at 2 p.m. at La Cañada Presbyterian Church, with a reception immediately following.
Any kind acts of charity may be made to USC Verdugo Hills Hospital Foundation, or to any organization of your choice:
In Memory of Tom Spalding for the ICU
1812 Verdugo Blvd.
Glendale, CA 91214

John Robert Ruder

John Robert Ruder
John Robert Ruder

On June 18, John Robert Ruder passed away at 21 years old. Jack was a loving son and brother, funny, incredibly driven and kind. A proud Mustang at the Orfalea College of Business at Cal Poly San Louis Obispo class of 2018, Jack played intramural basketball for freshman and sophomore years as well as St. Francis High School varsity ball.
In his spare time, he put his entrepreneurial skills to good use: starting and monetizing a YouTube channel that grew to more than 600,000 subscribers, as well as pursuing other business start-up ventures.
We know he touched the lives of many while he was here with us, whether it be his friends, business partners, or his family who love him so much. In lieu of flowers, we ask that donations be made to the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation (also known as NARSAD: National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Depression).
He is survived by his mother, Shannon Drennan Ruder; his father, Tim Ruder; and two loving sisters, Claire and Claudia.
The funeral will be held this Friday, June 23, at 10 a.m. at St. Bede. There will also be a rosary today, June 22, at 7 p.m. at St. Bede.

Rev. Dr. Donald Frank Berns

Oct. 8, 1947 – June 5, 2017

The Rev. Dr. Don Berns
The Rev. Dr. Don Berns

Don Berns was a Hoosier, born in Indianapolis, to the late Martha (Tufts) and Philip Berns. He was athletic and adventuresome from his boyhood on, from cracking a bullwhip and snapping popsicle sticks from his younger sister’s mouth, to starring as a Little League pitcher, to playing every season’s sports until he focused on tennis in high school and college, followed by golf the rest of his life. He always admired large birds and wanted to fly, and even took some flying lessons, went hang gliding and sky dived once and was planning to go again this summer.
In July 1963, Don was introduced to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ through the ministry of Young Life. Don’s commitment to God in Christ shaped and formed who he was and how he lived for the rest of his life.
Don was a Duke Blue Devil, graduating from Duke University’s School of Engineering as a Mechanical Engineer, and played varsity tennis all four years. He also was on the European circuit one summer with his Duke Netter pals during his Duke years.
Following graduation, Don used his engineering degree, working with Exxon and his family’s highway construction business, Berns Construction Co., for five years. He always said that the problem-solving skills gained from engineering were excellent preparation for life.
When he sensed God calling him to fulltime Christian ministry, he knew that nothing is wasted in God’s economy, and became a transplant to California, graduating from Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena. For 12 exciting and fruitful years, Don impacted thousands of teens in youth ministry and directed the intern program, which trained nearly 100 future reverends at La Cañada Presbyterian Church. When Parkinson’s disease made a transition necessary, he switched his focus to ministry in the marketplace (the emphasis of his Doctor of Ministry dissertation) and pastoral care.
Though he was diagnosed with PD at 33, he fought, researched and attacked PD as a challenge and a problem to be solved. To the end of his life, he never gave up learning, hoping and praying for a cure, while inspiring and encouraging many others who battle PD and other chronic and neurological diseases globally.
Don was married to the love of his life, the Rev. Karen Womer Berns for 46 years, 36 of which PD was a part of their relationship. They are the parents of son, Jason, and daughter, Joy Dunn. Don is survived by his beloved and loving family — Karen Berns, Jason Berns and Joy Dunn; their spouses, Laura Berns, and Matt Dunn; and five grandchildren, Kylie, Justin, Dominic, Charlotte and Alexandra, all of whom he cherished. He also treasured his three younger sisters, Kathy Albrektson, Sally John and Peggy Mindrebo, their husbands, Ray Albrektson, Mark John and Norm Mindrebo, and their families.
After fighting the good fight, keeping and sharing the faith, Don passed through the doorway of death peacefully into eternal life on June 5. Don leaves a legacy of Love, Faith, Joy and Perseverance for all those who knew him.
Memorial gifts in Don’s name may be made to:

Young Life Pasadena Area
2275 Huntington Drive, #173,
Pasadena, CA 91108-2640
greaterpasadena.younglife.org

The Michael J. Fox Foundation
P.O. Box 5014, Hagerstown,
MD 21741-5014
michaeljfox.org
Tribute to Don: michaeljfox.org/tribute/tribute-page.php?id=20295

Rev. Dr. Don Berns

The Rev. Dr. Don Berns
The Rev. Dr. Don Berns

The Rev. Dr. Don Berns, former associate pastor at La Cañada Presbyterian Church and San Marino Community Church, died peacefully in his sleep early Monday morning, June 5. Don had valiantly battled Parkinson’s disease for 36 years, was a pioneer patient in unique Parkinson’s treatments and impacted many people’s lives throughout his life.
Services will be at La Cañada Presbyterian Church on Wednesday, June 14, at 3:30 p.m. More details of Don’s life will appear in the Outlook next week.

Tracy Ann Sheedy

08/11/1950 – 05/23/17

Tracy Ann Sheedy
Tracy Ann Sheedy

Tracy Ann Sheedy passed away peacefully and surrounded by loved ones on the morning of May 23 at her home in Pasadena due to natural causes.
Tracy was born in Houston, Texas, on Aug. 11, 1950, to the late Mattie Ann (Reistle) and James Clark. She was their only child and was their pride and joy. She moved several times throughout her childhood and eventually made her way to California when her father was transferred here in 1965.
She spent her high school years at La Cañada High School where she was a an LC Song Girl. For college, she attended the University of Oklahoma and graduated from University of Arizona. At OU she pledged Pi Beta Phi and later was the president of the Pi Phi house at U of A.
After college, Tracy married long-time La Cañada Flintridge resident and St. Francis High School alumnus Timothy Sheedy, on Dec. 1, 1973. In their 42 years of marriage, they raised three children and shared a life full of joy, love and laughter at their home in Pasadena.
Tracy is survived by her husband and best friend, Timothy Sheedy; children: Madeline “Mandy” Casani (Drew), Derrigan Sheedy (Bernadette) and Timothy Sheedy; and five grandchildren: Kane Casani, Luke Casani, John Casani, Dylan Sheedy and Delaney Sheedy.
A service in celebration of Tracy’s life was held at St. Andrew Catholic Church on Tuesday, May 30. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Tracy’s name to St. Andrew Church. Donations may be mailed to St. Andrew Pastoral Center, 140 Chestnut St., Pasadena, CA 91103 or made online at https://secure.paperlesstrans.com/StAndrewsChurch.

Service for Spence Will Be Wednesday at LCPC

Dave Spence

A memorial service for local leader Dave Spence will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, May 31, at La Cañada Presbyterian Church.
Spence died of an apparent heart attack on Tuesday, May 16. A six-time La Cañada Flintridge mayor, he was serving his seventh term as a member of the City Council. He also served a four-year term on the Public Safety Commission.
In lieu of flowers, Spence’s family requests that donations be made to the “La Cañada Presbyterian Church,” or the “City of La Cañada Flintridge.” Funds will be used to support children’s ministry at the church or a memorial at the new City Hall, respectively.
Checks can be sent to: La Cañada Presbyterian Church, 626 Foothill Blvd., LCF, 91011.

An ‘Unparalleled’ Civil Servant, Spence Dies at 80

Dave Spence

La Cañada Flintridge lost Dave Spence on Tuesday.
The devoted city councilman and six-time mayor died from an apparent heart attack at his home, according to a statement from the city. Spence, 80, was found Tuesday morning.
Spence loved LCF, and, judging by a quarter-century worth of election results, the city loved him.
In March, he was re-elected for a seventh term as a member of the City Council, on which he’d served since 1992, including those record six turns as mayor: “In my opinion, La Cañada Flintridge is one of the greatest cities in this state,” Spence said during his last campaign.
“Dave Spence’s love for our community was truly unparalleled in our history,” wrote Steve Del Guercio, also a former mayor and longtime friend of Spence, in an email. “Seemingly ubiquitous, he touched the lives of generations of La Cañadans with his kindness, goodwill and dedication to helping others.”
A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, May 31, at La Cañada Presbyterian Church.
Continue reading “An ‘Unparalleled’ Civil Servant, Spence Dies at 80”

Obituary – Richard Dix Wood

Richard Wood
Richard Wood

 October 14, 1939 – May 6, 2017

Richard Wood, a resident of San Marino for 21 years, passed away peacefully on Saturday, May 6, due to complications of injuries sustained in a bicycle accident. His loving family was by his side.
Dick was born on Oct. 14, 1939, in Denver, Colorado, to Frank and Margaret Wood, recently of Lake San Marcos. He was the beloved husband of Patra (nee Thompson), brother of the late Debra (Fred) Folbrecht of Lake San Marcos and Catherine (Wayne) Schultz of Brookfield, Wisconsin.
He is survived by his sons Ron (Anh) of San Marino and Michael of Phoenix, Arizona; stepchildren Tovah (Johnathan) Kolodisnki of Watsonville, California, and Aaron Badart of Hancock Park, California; grandchildren Rachel, Ryan, Nicole, Michael Jr. and Jared, and step-grandchildren Violet and Taytem.
He will be greatly missed by his nephew Eric (Jeanelle) Folbrecht and nieces Amy (Rich) Ward and Tamara Schultz.
Dick graduated from the Mechanical Engineering School of Kansas University. He achieved success as an innovator in the fields of optics and engineering. Being a tremendous leader and dedicated professional, he mentored many during his career. His work ethic, determination and generous nature have touched so many in all aspects of his life. His passions bicycling, boating, hiking and traveling took him all over the world. His enthusiasm for these endeavors was shared by all who knew him.
To those of you who were aware of his accident, and to those who may be learning just now, we thank you on behalf of the Wood family for all your thoughts and prayers. The family asks anyone wishing to make a memorial donation in his honor to please consider riverstone.org, bikeleague.org or City of Hope, 1500 E. Duarte Road, Duarte, CA 91011 (attn: Amy Cook), or through the website https://secure.cityofhope.org/donate/main/cardsforhope.aspx and note the gift is in honor of Dick Wood.

Obituary – Arlene Kelly

Arlene Kelly
Arlene Kelly

Arlene Kelly, 84, passed away peacefully April 27 with her family by her side.
“Artie” was born in Grinelle, Kansas, to Francis and Emma Holdforth. At the age of 4 she and her brothers and sisters moved to Fredericksburg, Texas.
While attending McNay Art Institute in San Antonio, she met and married Lt. Cornelius B. Kelly III. In their 61 years of marriage they shared 20 homes, countless travel adventures and raised seven loving children. After moving to San Marino in 1978, she became an active member of the community. She was on the board and held numerous positions in the San Marino Women’s Club, Garden Club and PEO.
She was a gracious, kind, fun-loving and generous woman who was loved and treasured by all that knew her.
Continue reading “Obituary – Arlene Kelly”

Obituary – Morgan Danielle Manning

Morgan Danielle Manning
Morgan Danielle Manning

Morgan Danielle Manning was born on Feb. 6, 2003, at Huntington Memorial Hospital in Pasadena to Kerwin and Madelyn Manning. Morgan was the second child of this union. Both she and her older sister Madison were miracles considering Kerwin and Madelyn were told they could not conceive children.
Morgan was a chubby little baby. People would say she looked like her dad and others would affectionately call her “Little Mona” because she looked so much like her grandmother, Ramona. As Morgan matured, Madelyn took pride in seeing Morgan starting to look and sound just like her.
Continue reading “Obituary – Morgan Danielle Manning”