Tuesday, 24 November 2020


Well-known Lake County attorney Stephen Dicran Tulanian passed away unexpectedly at his home in Lower Lake on May 2, 2009. Steve was a native Californian, born July 11, 1950. He graduated from the University of California at Berkeley in 1972 and the University of San Francisco School of Law in 1976. He began the practice of law in 1977 in Napa. In 1981, he moved his practice to Lake County, and practiced there until his death.

A dedicated criminal defense lawyer, Steve compassionately advocated for his clients, gaining recognition as a fierce defender of personal liberties. He successfully defended Lake County’s first “Three Strikes” case. He was a well-known resource to other attorneys.

Steve was a gentleman, and always had a smile and good word for any friend who came his way, including those he met as strangers put parted from as friends. He loved the law, but he loved much more: he had a passion for Corvettes, guitars, billiards, poker, jokes, photography, language, the blues, laughing, his beloved dogs and cats. He also enjoyed sharing good food and a drink with friends.

Stephen did not play poker to win. He played to have his friends with him. While most would see Steve as a brilliant, intense, sometimes irascible trial lawyer, he was a man with a great sense of humor to his friends and family. He could repeat nearly verbatim any scene from any Three Stooges film, and he concocted many of the world’s worst puns.

Stephen loved his home as his retreat from the world. His home is nestled in the hills south of Lower Lake, which he shared with his partner of many years, Lois Jean, known to all as LJ.

Stephen is survived by his mother, Lucy V. Tulanian of Walnut Creek; sister, Laura Tulanian of Fresno; brother, Michael Tulanian, also of Walnut Creek; and dear friend, Mary Benson of Lower Lake.

There will be visitation at Jones & Lewis Clear Lake Memorial Chapel, Main Street in Lower Lake, Monday, May 11, from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., with a memorial service at 12:30 p.m. at the Jones & Lewis chapel.

Stephen’s practice and clients will be served by J. David Markham at 707-263-7080.

Stephen’s family prefers that any donations be made to the Family Literacy Program, Lakeport Library 1425 N, High St., Lakeport 95453. Checks may be made to Ginny DeVries, coordinator of the program.

Condolences may be written to the family at www.jonesandlewis.com. For additional information, please contact the funeral home at 707-994-6417.

CLEARLAKE OAKS – Family and friends will gather this Sunday, April 26, to remember James Heeszel.

A memorial service will take place at the Clearlake Oaks Moose Lodge, at the junction of Highways 20 and 53, beginning at 11 a.m.

Heeszel, who died earlier this year, grew up in Clearlake Oaks, and had most recently lived and worked as a plumber in the San Jose area, where a memorial was held for him on April 18.

He is survived by his parents, Bob and Judy, and twin brother, John.

For more information on the April 26 event, contact Sue Burton, 998-3355.



Stephen Joseph Vecellio, aka “The Cookie Man,” died in distress on Feb. 25, 2009.

Born Sept. 18, 1945, he was raised in the Bay Area and attended school in both Oakland and San Leandro, Calif.

He joined the US Marine Corps after graduating in 1963. He served his country for eight years in Vietnam and later San Diego, during which he was a member of the the First and Third Marine Divisions.

He continued serving his American Vietnam brothers as post commander of the Disabled American Vets Chapter 7 and was a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars. He established and was commandant of the Marine Corps League “Frank Reasoner” Detachment of Hayward, Calif.

From 1990 to 1993 he served two terms as a member of the California's Veterans Boards, appointed by Gov. George Deukmejian and Gov. Pete Wilson. He established and served as executive director of the Veterans Resource Council, an organization sponsored by the Small Business Administration, assisting veterans who wanted to open small business.

He served on the committee for the Vietnam Memorial in Sacramento, helping to coordinate Mr. Bob Hope's San Francisco Bay Area visits and taking the mock-up of the memorial around to various groups.

During the first Gulf War, he was selected by Sen. Pete Wilson to head up “Operation COHART” (Californians Organized to help Our Reserves and Troops).

He retired from Pacific Gas & Electric after 30 years in the Oakport yard. He joined the community of Hidden Valley Lake where, for the past nine years, he attempted to enjoy Lake County.

Stephen was the son of Alvina (Babe) Vecellio and predeceased by father Joseph Vecellio.

He left behind his loving wife of 25 years, Toni Vecellio. He is survived by his two daughters, Diane Marie Vecellio of San Leandro and Victoria Camacho and her husband Rui of Pleasanton; and stepson, Brian Tuller of Santa Rosa. He also was survived by his nine grandchildren who were the light of his life: Anthony, Samantha, Jared, Roy Josh, Steven, Laura, Daniel, Angelo and Juno, all of the Bay Area; his brother, Gene and wife Jeanette Vecellio of Ripon; sister, Renee Campanella and husband Charles of Pleasanton; three nephews; one niece; two grand-nieces and one grand-nephew.

His favorite saying: “God and the Soldier, All men adore, in times of trouble, but no more. For when the war's over and trouble righted, God is neglected and Soldier slighted.”

A funeral mass will be held for Stephen at noon on Saturday, March 21, at St. Joseph Church, 21396 Highway 175, Middletown.

Family requests any donations be made to our local Catholic churches: Weekend masses at St. Joseph Church in Middletown or Our Lady of the Lake in Loch Lomand (contact at 987-3676), or daily masses at Queen of Peace Church in Clearlake (contact at 994-6618) as his family plans to attend all masses at these churches.


Kitty Kat Kimbell. Courtesy photo.



Kitty Katt Kimbell is now at home with her heavenly Father. She left this life for the courts of heaven on April 24, 2009, after a long struggle with cancer and other illnesses.

She was born in Springfield, Mass., on Oct. 14, 1948. In 1961 her family moved to California where at the age of 12 she met the love of her life, John Kimbell. Together they have known many difficult times, but also blessing and love.

Kitty graduated from Marina High School in 1966 and was proud of her bachelor and master’s work at Eastern Kentucky University, as well as nursing studies. She enjoyed her years drafting and for a time teaching math at San Bernardino Community College, but her favorite job and ministry was as a pastor’s wife. Kitty will be remembered for a big and loving heart that always reached out to others.

Kitty is survived by her loving husband, Pastor John Kimbell of Tuolumne; daughters, Rev. Shannon Kimbell-Auth of Lakeport and Kimberle Hill of Riverside; sons-in-law, Michael Auth and Todd Hill; and five grandchildren. She is survived also by her mother, Jean Sachs of Soulsbyville; brothers Ziggy Katt of Marble Falls, Texas and Bob Katt of Albany, NY; and many other extended family members.

While Kitty now rests in the peace of the Lord, we will miss her and invite you to join us for a celebration of her life on May 6 at noon at the Tuolumne United Methodist Church, 18851 Cedar St., Tuolumne. In lieu of flowers memorial gifts* in Kitty’s honor may be given to the United Christian Parish at 745 N Brush St. in Lakeport CA 95453.

(*Memorial gifts will be used to facilitate making our church bathrooms handicap accessible, it saddened me to realize over the past months that my own mother and grandmother would not be able to worship at our church because the bathrooms are not handicap accessible yet!).




Steven Martin Gerstmann was born Feb. 28, 1960, and passed away in Lake County on Feb. 28, 2009, due to heart failure.

Steve was born in San Francisco and raised in Marin County. He graduated from Sir Francis Drake High School, and served in the Army during the Vietnam era, stationed in Germany.

A fine musician and song writer, Steve spent time in Hawaii working as a jazz and rock musician, and married his wife, Charlotte. They later moved home to the Bay Area and then up to Lake County, scene of many happy childhood summers spent with his brother and sister, many cousins, and aunts and uncles.

Later in life Steve was a big fan of karaoke, and enjoyed watching the abundant wildlife in Lake County.

Steve is survived by a brother, Tom, his wife, Diane, and their son, Jeff, all of Petaluma; his brother, Frank (Lee) of Oakland; and his sister, Ingrid, her husband John and their two daughters, Farallon and Eleanor, of Manhattan, along with many Cassidy and Oberg cousins.

Brig. Gen. Jack Ross McMills (Ret.) passed away on March 5, 2009, in San Francisco. Courtesy photo.





Brig. Gen. Jack Ross McMills (Ret.) went home to be with the Lord March 5, 2009, in San Francisco, at the age of 77, with his devoted wife and family by his side.

Jack was born in San Mateo on May 16, 1931, to Dr. and Mrs. James O. McMills of Millbrae.

He grew up in Millbrae and graduated from Burlingame High School where he was recently (2004) inducted into the Athletic Hall of Fame. He went on to San Mateo Junior College where he won the Northern California J.C. Golf Championship in both 1950 and 1951. In the late 1970s and 1980s he won 11 golf championships. He holds two golf course records.

Jack attended the University of California, San Francisco, and graduated from the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College in Ft. Benning, GA, majoring in logistics. He was a liaison officer for the US Military Academy at West Point for the West Coast.

He served in the US Army for 33 years and stood strong through the Korean War, receiving three purple hearts.

Adding to his extensive education and military background, he was on the sheriff's department in five counties: Trinity, Glenn, Colusa, Lake and San Mateo.

In Lake County, Jack was a Sheriff's Boat Patrol deputy from 1987 to 2000. He and wife, Gratia, lived in the Buckingham area of Kelseyville for many years.

He was a member of the Rotary Club in Weaverville and Orland, and a member of the Masonic Lodge for 54 years.

Jack was currently the president of the Willow Creek Mutual Water Co. and active member of the CWA. Jack's life occupation was service to his country and community. His favorite place to be was at the ranch, duck hunting; he loved to golf and was dedicated to his family.

He is survived by his loving wife, Gratia, of Willows; sister, Andrea Peck; niece, Sharon; nephews, Scott of Manton and Norm Taylor of Lakeport; daughters, Jackie Armstrong and husband Timothy of Modesto, Tina Spessard and husband Steve of Tehama; nine grandchildren – Jimmy and his wife Nikki, Daniel, Lucas, Amber, Alisha, Bridget and husband Adam, Melissa, Jamie, Cody; and five great-grandchildren – Shawn, Brynn, Lexi, Mikalah and one on the way. Two special family members Mark and Leslie Shannon and their daughters Leah and Sarah also survive him.

Services will be held on Tuesday, March 17, 2009, at the Civic Memorial Building/Veterans Hall in Willows at 1 p.m.

The family requests that in lieu of flowers donations be made to a charity of your choice.


Upcoming Calendar

11.25.2020 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm
Library hosts ‘Zoom with the Director’ 
11.25.2020 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Drive-up flu vaccine event
Thanksgiving Day
11.28.2020 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Lake County Farmers’ Finest Saturday market
12.01.2020 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Mendocino College Symposium
12.05.2020 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Gallery Open Reception: Home
Middletown Art Center
12.12.2020 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Lake County Farmers’ Finest Saturday market
12.19.2020 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Lake County Farmers’ Finest Saturday market
Christmas Eve

Mini Calendar



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