Thursday, 21 September 2023



On Aug. 21, 2013, L. Irene Gradek left this world, which she joyfully inhabited for 90 years.

Irene was born in Candiff, Ontario, Canada, and raised in Niagra Falls, N.Y. She became a naturalized citizen when she married Bruno Gradek in 1943.

After Bruno’s Air Force tour of duty during World War II, Bruno and Irene moved to San Francisco, where they lived for several years before buying a home in 1950 in Belmont, Calif., to raise their family.

In Belmont, Irene spent her days as a dutiful wife and loving mother and found opportunities to volunteer and explore several hobbies. One of her favorite pastimes was learning about spiritual consciousness and self discovery.

They purchased their Witter Springs ranch in 1961 and spent the next 22 years as weekend farmers and eventually retired in Witter Springs.

Bruno and Irene shared 58 years together before Bruno preceded her in death in September 2004. After Bruno’s death Irene continued to pursue her desire for self learning and cherished her several groups of special friends in Lake County and Belmont.

Irene was a gentle soul with a twinkle in her eye who could brighten a room with her smile. For all who knew and loved Irene, they will remember her as a tender person who loved her family unconditionally and was a supportive, generous, kind mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and spiritual friend.

Irene is survived by her children, James Gradek and his family in Belmont, Calif., and Reno, Nev.; Karen Rashleger and her family in San Carlos, Calif.,; and William Gradek and his family in Witter Springs, Calif.

The family wishes to send special blessings and deep gratitude to Irene’s nephew, Kai Lawrence, for the gift of care and love he gave her in the final years of her life.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, Sept. 7, at 11 a.m. at the Chapel of the Lakes Mortuary at 1625 N. High Street, Lakeport, Calif., telephone 707-263-0357.

Ernest T. Juri passed away Aug. 17, 2013, in his sleep.

Born in Mokelumne Hill, Calif., on Aug. 14, 1939, he had been a longtime resident of Clearlake, Calif.

He was a master mechanic, welder, woodworker, and could build or repair virtually anything. His favorite things to work on were antique farm equipment.

He was a Christian man, a husband, father, Korean War veteran, guitar player and friend, and will be missed by many.

He was preceded in death by his wife many years ago, as well as by his mother and father. He was dearly loved by his longtime companion, Carol Hughes, as well as the rest of his family, including his sisters, Anne Juri, Delores “Sissy” Arenander, Muriel McBurney and Robin Berglund; brother, Bill Arenander; cousin, Mary DeAguiar; and Lisa, Carol's daughter and a huge help to Ernest; and many, many others he considered “his family”… and his son Michael Van Horn from Alaska.

A private internment is scheduled and the family requests donations be made to the local food bank in his honor in lieu of flowers.


Charles “Chuck” Nieman passed peacefully Aug. 18, 2013, at the age of 75.

He served in the United States Air Force from 1956 to 1960 and was also the Past Exalted Ruler at the Lakeport Elk's Lodge and contributed generously to the community.

Chuck is survived by his cousins, Rich Nieman, Gail Scheutze, John Nieman, and Fred and Tom Strauss.

Visitation will be at Chapel of the Lakes Mortuary from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 22, with funeral services at 11 a.m. Friday Aug. 23.

The Nieman family prefers donations be made to the Lakeport Elk's Lodge, 3775 Lakeshore Blvd., Lakeport, CA 95453.

For further information contact Chapel of the Lakes Mortuary at 707-263-0357 or 707-994-5611, or visit .


Roberta “Bobbie” Joyce Bertini joined her parents in heaven August 18, 2013.

She leaves her sister, Sondra (Ed) McDonald and many relatives.

Rest in peace, Bobbie.

Graveside service will take place at 11 a.m. Monday, Aug. 26, at the Italian Cemetery Chapel, Colma.

For further information contact Chapel of the Lakes at 707-263-0357 or 707-994-5611, or visit .


Jeffrey Francis Wilder II was born on Dec. 15, 1988, in Clearlake, Calif.

Jeff was taken tragically while working on the job in Victoria, Texas, on Monday, Aug. 12, 2013.  

Jeff worked his dream job as a lineman since graduating in 2009 from the Northwest Lineman’s College.  

Working in this field provided Jeff the opportunity to pursue his passion, as well as explore new parts of the country, and give back to those who were suffering loss in times of natural disaster.  

Those who knew him understand that giving back came naturally to Jeff.  One would never come in contact with him without seeing his beaming smile or receiving one of his unforgettable hugs.  

Jeff was much like any other 24-year-old and enjoyed indulging in video games, eating bacon cheeseburgers with extra bacon, and watching Giants baseball with a cold beer.  

There was nothing he loved and looked forward to more than coming home to the mountains, oceans and lakes of California.  

Jeff squeezed every moment out of life, and never missed an opportunity to express his love to his family and friends.  

Jeff leaves behind his heartbroken family: dad, Jeff; mom, Cathy; adoring sisters, Kate and Ronnie; brother, Bobby; best friends, Chris and Wyland; loving girlfriend, Jenny; aunts and uncles, Kelley and Bert, Billy and Kristi, Jody and Art, Ginny and Lee, Patti, Linda, Terrie and Kenny, Buddy and Connie; and grandmother, Jeri.

The Jeffrey Wilder Memorial Scholarship Fund will be established through the Northwest Lineman College in Denton, Texas. Those interested in contributing may please contact Lewis Rhoden at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .  

Please join the family for a funeral Mass at 11 a.m. Friday, Aug. 23, at Queen of Peace Catholic Church, 14435 Uhl Ave., Clearlake.

Immediately following Mass there will be a celebration of Jeff’s life at the Masonic Lodge No. 183, 7100 S. Center Drive in Clearlake.


Michael Reid Thompson passed away on Aug. 1, 2013.

He was born June 4, 1948, in Oakland, Calif., to Warren and Candace Thompson.

He is survived by the love of his life, Sandi Thompson, and his sons, James Thompson and Tony Orozco, plus his godson Robert Orozco.

He also leaves behind his brother, Steve Thompson (Barbara); sisters, Kris Edgmon (Kevin), and Beth Balentine (Mike); and sister-in-law Fern Miller, as well as numerous nieces and nephews.

His parents moved from Oakland to Lake County, Calif., when he was just 5 years old.

Mike graduated from Clear Lake High School in 1966 then went to Napa Junior College. He then went on to Denver University in Colorado where he received his degree in sports medicine as well as a teaching certificate.

While in Denver he was a trainer for the Denver Nuggets basketball team as well as for the semi-pro Colts Football team and an assistant trainer for the Denver Broncos. He also was a trainer for the Australian tennis pro Rod Laver.

After returning to Lake County he worked for the county of Lake for 30 plus years where he met his
future wife Sandi in 1979.

His family is very proud to say that Mike was a man of many accomplishments.

Following his father's footsteps, he founded the first youth football program in Lake County known then as the Westshore Packers. His father, Warren Thompson, had created the first farm baseball league in Lakeport. Also during that time he was the assistant football coach for Clear Lake High School.

If not busy enough, in the early 1980s he was instrumental in founding the league Lake County Adult Softball Association (LCASA), which is still going strong today.

The 1990s brought him a two-time Senior Amateur Golf Championship in Lake County, as well as coaching the Clear Lake High School golf team.

In 2003 he was the founder of the Corvettes of Lake County, which has brought much joy to many.

Mike's biggest passions were his family, friends, the community and golf. He was known for his
inspiration as a mentor to youths, strong heart, being full of life and touching numerous hearts for the

Unbeknownst to many, Mike had a beautiful singing voice which his family had the pleasure of
hearing every Christmas. We will miss his boisterous laugh and bear hugs.

A celebration of life will be held at the Lakeside County Park Field A at 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 17.

In lieu of flowers please send any donations to the Clear Lake High School Athletics Department.

Please share your memories by signing the guest book at .

Upcoming Calendar

09.21.2023 9:00 am - 9:30 am
Clearlake City Council special meeting
09.21.2023 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Redbud Audubon welcomes Antarctica traveler
09.23.2023 9:00 am - 12:00 pm
California Coastal Cleanup Day
09.23.2023 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Lakeport Splash-In at Clear Lake
09.23.2023 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at the Mercantile
09.23.2023 5:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Passion Play fundraiser
09.24.2023 11:00 am - 3:00 pm
Acme Foundation 25th anniversary celebration
09.26.2023 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Farmers' Market at Library Park
09.27.2023 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Town hall on homelessness
09.28.2023 7:30 am - 8:30 am
Rotary Club of Middletown
Middletown Art Center

Mini Calendar



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