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Luwana Quitiquit of Nice, Calif., died on Friday, December 23, 2011, at her home. She was 70 years old. Photo courtesy of the Quitiquit family.


Luwana Fay Quitiquit, an Eastern Pomo, passed away on Dec. 23, 2011, in Nice, California.

Luwana was born Nov. 13, 1941 in Isleton, Calif.

She is survived by her children, Alan Harrison, Christina Harrison and Suelumatra Castillo; grandchildren, Marie Andrade, Elizabeth Davis, Solomon Douglas, Miranda Douglas; greatgrandchildren, Christian and Delicia; sisters, and brothers, Patricia A. Thompson, Marion C. Quitiquit, Steven D. Quitiquit, Cheryl A. Anderson, Godfrey D. Quitiquit, Wanda A. Quitiquit, Denise A. Quitiquit, Lalaine A. Quitiquit, Michael W. Quitiquit, Robert F. Quitiquit, Irenia A. Quitiquit; and many nieces and nephews.

Luwana was predeceased by her son, Tyrone A. Douglas; mother, Marie Boggs Quitiquit of Robinson Rancheria, Nice, Calif.; father, Claro A. Quitiquit of Stockton, Calif.; and brothers Lawrence Thompson, Ludwig, Gregory, and Adrian Quitiquit.

Luwana grew up in the Stockton Delta in the agricultural area of Union Island along the Middle River of Clifton Court Bay.

She attended David Bixler elementary, and graduated from Tracy Joint Union School. Her entire family worked as farm laborers in the Delta.

In November of 1969 during her employment at U.C. Berkeley, she was one of the first to land on Alcatraz Island where she remained until the occupation ended in 1971.

Luwana received her bachelor's degree in sociology from U.C. Berkeley in 1977. Since then, she became very active as a scholar and researcher, and worked as director of various California Indian organizations where she was at the forefront of the changes and challenges in California Indian country.

Luwana traveled to New Zealand and Australia, where she met with indigenous leaders who encouraged her to act on preserving her Pomo culture and heritage.

Luwana learned Pomo basketry from renowned weavers such as Mabel McKay, and became highly proficient at making Pomo baby cradles and opentwined baskets. She believed that anyone wanting to become a weaver must also learn the methods for gathering, cleaning and storing the basketry materials; thus, she felt strongly about educating and teaching basketry, and began demonstrating basketry and doing speaking engagements.

Luwana was a visionary and always had an idea to promote and better her art work; she was a “multitasker” when it came to her projects, such as beaded leather dresses and shirts in the traditional style. She was an expert abalone jeweler, and produced exquisite bead work.

As a businesswoman, she owned and operated the Pomo Fine Art Gallery in Lucerne, Calif. She traveled extensively throughout California promoting and selling her artwork.

Luwana was very successful at writing grants to educate, preserve and cultivate basketry materials; including the importance of sustaining natural plant habitats for use and for future generations.

Recently, Luwana joined the Elder’s Talking Circle and looked forward to teaching traditional Pomo art at the new Circle of Native Minds Wellness Center.

In December, 2008, Luwana and her entire family were disenrolled from Robinson Rancheria, and she became very active in fighting this injustice.

In retaliation, the illegal council at Robinson took action to evict Luwana and four other disenrolled families from their longstanding homes. Serving as spokeswoman, Luwana was instrumental in raising needed funds for their legal battle to retain their homes.

Her close friend Sandy Elgin said, “Luwana taught a cultural wellness class at the health clinic that became a class model for other tribal clinics in California. She was, and still is, a legend with a gentle spirit that will live on forever.”

On Thursday, Dec. 29, 2011, during the day, a wake will be held at Luwana’s home at 1019 Manzanita Circle, Robinson Rancheria, Nice, Calif.

Later that afternoon, a dinner will be held in her honor at 3 p.m. at the Upper Lake Odd Fellows in Upper Lake, Calif.

Nancy Millberry graduated from Lakeport High School in 1970. Her older sister Susan (now in Santa Rosa) graduated in 1969.

She earned a master’s degree in social work, worked as an adjunct professor and retired recently as administrator of Children’s Mental Health for Stanislaus County.

She was preceded in death by her twin sister “Sami” (Sydney), her older brother Patrick and her son Patrick.

She is survived by her husband Ken Davis and their son Josh.

Donald Frederick Strachan, AKA “Bonger Don” and “Kapomo Don,” passed away peacefully October 14, 2011, surrounded by family, caring friends, and his beloved cat Luna. He was 69.

He is survived by his brother Dave of New Mexico, as well as family in Washington state – his daughter, Gabrielle Nonast, son-in-law Doug, and grandchildren Ian and Leah.

Writer, environmental activist, entrepreneur, baseball lover and self-described hippy, Don was born in Detroit to parents active in local politics and labor issues.

After college he moved to Los Angeles and carried on the activist spirit as a draft-resistance counselor during the Vietnam War.

He sold juice on Venice Beach and delivered produce to the stars before founding Bongers, a small business that made handheld massage tools, a business he would run for 30 years.

In his later years he founded a health-food products company (his second of this type) to promote capomo, a protein-rich bean from Central America.

His greatest passion and commitment was protecting the environment. Don wrote about environmental concerns for a variety of publications, and in the 1980s created a board game called Save The World.

In the 1990s Don left the “craziness” of LA and settled in Middletown, where he was an active member of the Harbin and HAI communities.

Averse to cold weather, he spent winters in Mexico. There he built a palapa in Yelapa and wrote the novel he’d been planning for years, “King of Diamonds.”

Funny, intelligent, warm, friendly, adventurous, passionate, outspoken, creative, cantankerous, optimistic, unconventional, generous … this is how we will remember him.

Jim M. Love of Clearlake, Calif., died on Sunday, November 6, 2011. He was 79 years old. Courtesy photo.


Jim M. Love, loving husband, father and grandfather, passed away on Nov. 6, 2011, at St. Helena Hospital in St. Helena, Calif.

He was born in Arkansas on May 13, 1932, and moved to California at age 11.

He spent most of his life in the Bay Area. Jim was a Navy veteran, and enjoyed being in the service and forming relationships with those he met. He was stationed on the USS Anderson, nicknamed “The Andy,” and would often attend ship reunions.

After his service, he was employed by AT&T and stayed with them in various positions for 30 years.

Jim retired to Clearlake with his wife Linda in 1986. Jim enjoyed being a part of civic organizations and was a Past Master of the Masonic Lodge, as well as a member of the Elks, VFW and American Legion. His hobbies included hunting and fishing, activities he loved to do with his family.


Jim leaves behind his family: wife of 25 years, Linda Love of Clearlake; children, John, Jolayne, Julie, Anita, Cindy and Kevin; grandchildren, Brandon, Malinda, Myriah, Shawn, Joe, Rick, Derek, Tessa, Laney, Faelyn and Seamus; great-grandchildren, Dalley, Nolan and two on the way; sister, Jo Guerisoli (Vic); nieces, Vicky (David), Maggi and Judy Gomes; and many other extended family and friends.


Services for Jim will be held on Sunday, Nov. 13, at 12 p.m. at the Masonic Lodge, 7100 South Center Drive in Clearlake. In Lieu of flowers please send donations to the American Lung Association.


Arrangements entrusted to Jones & Lewis Clear Lake Memorial Chapel, Lower Lake, CA






V. Jean Young Rongey of Clearlake, Calif., died on Tuesday, October 25, 2011. She was 85. Courtesy photo.



V. Jean Young Rongey of Clearlake passed away on October 25, 2011, at the age of 85 with her family by her side.

She leaves behind her sons, Richard Young and Barry Young (Karen); 11 grandchildren; 15 great grandchildren; and five living siblings.

She is preceded in death by her first husband, Al Young, and their children, Jimmie Kay Morgado and Tony Young. She also was preceded in death by her second husband, Frank Rongey.

Jean was able to stay home to raise her four children. She loved to learn and spent much of her adult life attending college and obtained two bachelor's degrees as well as several licenses. She took classes and received a pilot’s license so that she and Al could fly together.

Later in life Jean obtained a real estate broker's license and she and Frank opened and operated their own real estate office before retiring. For a time she also worked as a jail matron for women inmates.

Her hobbies included painting both on canvas and on clothing as well as quilting and her very favorite, teaching line dancing.

In lieu of flowers make donations to the Alzheimer Association on behalf of Jean Rongey at

Services for Jean will be held on Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2011, at Jones & Lewis Clear Lake Memorial Chapel, 16140 Main St., Lower Lake, at 10 a.m. A committal service will follow at Lower Lake Cemetery.

To sign the online guestbook and watch a video with photos of Jean's life, visit

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