Shera Jean Keaster

April 4, 1974 Jan. 26, 2008

Jamestown resident Shera Jean Keaster died Jan. 26 at a Modesto hospital. She was 33.

Ms. Keaster was born in Stanford and lived in Jamestown for the past five years.

She was preceded in death by her grandfathers Robert Daniel in 1993 and Jess Keaster in 1978.

She is survived by her parents, Brad and Jeanie Keaster; her fianc; James Bramblett of Sonora; children Jana Bishop of Jamestown, Riley Keaster of Jamestown, and Madison Bramblett of Sonora; siblings Laura Elliott of Manteca, Rena Keaster of Jamestown; uncle and aunts Orval and Lynn Sholer of Jamestown, and Victoria Riley of Carson City, Nev.; nieces Ashley and Alyssa Elliott of Manteca; grandmothers Irma Keaster of Jamestown and Bonnie Daniel of Manteca; and her godmother, Maureen Harrah of Bigfork, Mont.

A service was held on Jan. 31 at Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home.

Donations may be made to the children of Shera Keaster at Umpqua Bank, 18281 Main St., in Jamestown.

Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home handled arrangements.

Nadine Jeanne Burton

April 30, 1926 Feb. 21, 2008

Sonora resident Nadine Jeanne Burton died Feb. 21 at her home. She was 81.

Mrs. Burton was born in Oakland and lived in Danville for more than 55 years. While there, she was active in the Community Presbyterian Church seniors group, Prime Time. She was newsletter editor and president of the Grandmothers Club. In earlier years, she was a Girl Scout leader and sang in the choir at Community Presbyterian Church. She was manager of the San Ramon Valley Chamber of Commerce for several years. She was a production assistant for Packaging Industries in San Leandro before retiring. She lived in Sonora for the past three-and-a-half years.

She was preceded in death by husbands Donald Burton and Jack Ridge; parents, Noel and Rose Gaubert; and son, Lloyd Burton.

Mrs. Burton is survived by her children Kathleen Burton of The Woodlands, Texas; Mary Austin of Sonora; and Scott Burton of Las Vegas, Nev.; grandchildren Kailey and Ian Austin of Sonora, Meghan and Kevin Reedy of The Woodlands, Dana, Michelle and Christine Burton of Las Vegas; and adopted granddaughter LisaMae Hamlin of Sonora; nieces Rachelle Walker of Meadow Vista, Placer County, Antoinette Ryser of Sandy, Utah; great-nieces and -nephews Dawn Becker of Sacramento, Serena Reno of San Francisco, and Christian, Tessa and Grace Ryser of Sandy; great-great-niece Bailey Becker; and cousin Claude Gaubert of Woodside, San Mateo County.

A service will be held at 11 a.m. Feb. 29 at Mrs. Burton's home, 267 Woodside Drive, in Sonora. For more information, call 743-1781.

Donations may be made to the Billy Graham Evangelical Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, NC 28201, or the Visiting Nurse Association, Hospice of the Sierra, P.O. Box 4805 Sonora, CA 95370.

Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home is handling arrangements.

Miriam Paine

Van Artsdale

Sept. 10, 1908 Feb. 24, 2008

Sonora resident Miriam Van Artsdale died Feb. 24 at her home. She was 99.

Mrs. Van Artsdale was born in Marshfield, Mass., to Josephine Bonney Paine and Dr. Mortimer Harwood Paine. She was a graduate of Dean Academy in Franklin, Mass., and attended Boston University. She was a member of both the Society of Mayflower Descendants and the National Society of Colonial Dames of America in California.

She lived for many years in Cincinnati, Ohio, four years in Tokyo, Japan, and 25 years in Carmel before moving to Sonora in 1995. She traveled to many countries during her lifetime.

She married John A. Reid and the two divorced in 1957. She then married Rear Adm. Edwin T. Layton who died in 1984, and then Harold D. Van Artsdale who died in 1998.

Mrs. Van Artsdale was a weaver, quilter, gardener and art collector. She taught quilting and pattern drafting in Carmel and Pacific Grove. Among her volunteer activities were the World Affairs Council and board membership on Planned Parenthood. More recently, she published a nationally distributed cookbook, "I'd Rather Be Quilting Cookbook," and was working on "The Chewtah Chronicles," a family history, at the time of her death. She had an interest in the investment world and was a member of GROW (Gold Rush Organization of Women), a local investment group.

She is survived by her daughters Joan R. Bergsund of Sonora, Marilyn R. Bragdon of Petaluma, and Marcia R. Macklin of Yarmouthport, Mass.; son-in-law, Walter E. Bragdon; eight grandchildren; and 11 great-grandchildren.

Per her request, no services will be held.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Visiting Nurse Association, Hospice of the Sierra, P.O. Box 4805, Sonora, CA 95370, or to Mountain Women's Resource Center, c/o the Sonora Area Foundation, P.O. Box 577, Sonora, CA 95370, or to a charity of choice.

Heuton Memorial Chapel is handling arrangements.

William C. Vargas

Sept. 17, 1918 Feb. 23, 2008

Longtime Sonora resident William C. Vargas died Feb. 23 at his home in Sonora. He was 89.

Mr. Vargas was born in Hayward and lived the Livermore area for 35 years. He served in the Army during World War II. He was a member of St. Michael's Church in Livermore and Teamsters Union Local No. 291 in Oakland. He loved to dance and garden. He was a truck driver for 25 years. He lived in Sonora for 24 years.

He was preceded in death in 1985 by his wife, Lorraine.

He is survived by his daughter Sharon Vargas of Livermore; brother, Joseph Marshall of Roseburg, Ore.; grandsons, Terry Edgar, Michael Edgar, Jason Edgar, all of Livermore, and Clifton Murphree of Tracy; and six great-grandchildren.

Visitation will be held from 3 to 5 p.m. Feb. 28 at Heuton Memorial Chapel, followed by a Rosary service at 5 p.m. A Mass will be celebrated at 11 a.m. Feb. 29 at St. Michael's Church, 458 Maple St., in Livermore, followed by internment at St. Michael's Church Cemetery.

Heuton Memorial Chapel is handling arrangements.

Raymond Allen Thompson

July 30, 1966 Feb. 23, 2008

Longtime Tuolumne County resident Raymond Allen Thompson died Feb. 23 at a Sonora hospital. He was 41.

Mr. Thompson was born in Yakima, Wash., and lived in the Sonora area for 23 years. He was a mill operator for Sierra Pacific Industries for 20 years. He was a longtime member of the Sonora Volunteer Fire Department, Eureka Engine Company No. 1, the Independent Hose and Chemical Company No. 2, and E Clampus Vitus Local Chapter 1849.

He enjoyed bowling, softball, high school sports and outdoor activities. His family described him as a loving brother and uncle and said he will be missed. They also said all who knew him recognized his kind and gentle soul.

Mr. Thompson is survived by his brothers, William Conrad Johnson and Lawrence Lowell Thompson; sisters Bonnie Louise Thomas and Christine Huff; sisters-in-law Misty Lee Thompson and Franziska Johnson; brother-in-law Scott Thomas; nephews Jeremy Rueben Thompson, Billy Johnson and Christopher Thomas; nieces Toni Johnson, Christina Thompson, Tiffany Johnson, Kristen Thompson and Stephanie Johnson; and 20 distant nieces and nephews; close friends Tim and Nancy Moyle, Bill and Peggy Canning and Barry Bigbee; and many other friends.

Per his request, no services will be held. A potluck celebration of life will be held at 1 p.m. March 1 in the Manzanita Building at the Mother Lode Fairgrounds.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his name to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, 6931 Arlington Road, Bethesda, MD 20814.

Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home is handling arrangements.

John Thomas Beckett

Jan. 13, 1950 Feb. 20, 2008

Paloma resident John Thomas Beckett died Feb. 20 at his home. He was 58.

Mr. Beckett was born in Oakland and grew up in Orinda. In 2000, he moved to Valley Springs and in 2005 to Paloma. He worked in construction for 25 years and was a truck driver for two years. He enjoyed working on cars, fishing, snow skiing and traveling.

He is survived by his son, Brahms Schmidt of Iowa; brother, John R. Beckett of Valley Springs; sister, Pamela Scott of Lodi; and one grandchild.

No services will be held and burial will be private.

San Andreas Memorial Chapel is handling arrangements.


BLOTT Rex Blott, 93, of Soulsbyville, died Feb. 25 at a Sonora care home. Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home is handling arrangements.

NEWKIRK Rhoda Newkirk, 92, of Sonora died Feb. 26 at a Merced hospice. Heuton Memorial Chapel is handling arrangements.