Union Democrat staff

William P. 'Bill' Rutherford Sr.

Jan. 11, 1941 - Sept. 19, 2012

William P. "Bill" Rutherford Sr. was pronounced dead Wednesday morning at Sonora Regional Medical Center shortly after being taken there from his Tuolumne home. He was 71.

Mr. Rutherford was born in St. Helena on Jan. 11, 1941, to Betty Wimberly Rutherford McKenzie and Albert Rutherford. He was raised largely in the Napa and Fort Bragg areas except for about a year in New Jersey about the age of 10.

As a teenager, he moved to Shingle Springs in El Dorado County with his mother and stepfather, and graduated from El Dorado Union High School in 1958. He attended Napa Junior College and Columbia Junior College as well as taking many other college courses through the years. He also read voraciously, almost always technical how-to books.

Mr. Rutherford was a Boy Scout when he was young, reaching First Class rank. In the 1960s, '70s and '80s, he was a Scoutmaster and a leader in the organizational aspects of Scouts in Tuolumne County and what was then Yosemite Area Council of Boy Scouts, headquartered in Modesto. Among other awards, he was given the prestigious Silver Beaver for his service to youth.

His wife said he loved playing the guitar and singing, especially with his children. His musical interests varied. He was a country music fan, but knew every word to every song John Denver ever sang and most of Pavarotti's, as well.

She said he also loved vacationing and mini-vacations and always said he was taking his retirement one trip at a time. Destinations included Hawaii, Disneyland, Las Vegas, Napa Valley, the Sierra Nevada, Idaho, the Southern California deserts, New Orleans, Florida, the Southwest and other places throughout the United States.

He was known for his cooking skills and was a founding member of the Central California Dutch Oven Association.

He had many hobbies over the years. His favorites in recent years included golf, fly fishing and playing chauffeur in costume as "Chuckie" for his family to special occasion wine tastings.

He had many jobs. Early ones included bookkeeper for Michigan Cal Lumber in Camino, El Dorado County, loan official with Liberty Loan in San Francisco and working in mines in El Dorado County.

He met his wife, Lenore, in July 1961 on a blind date in Placerville, and they were married that Oct. 21. They celebrated their 50th anniversary in October.

They moved to Tuolumne County in 1963, where he began a 25-year career with what was then called Pacific Asbestos in Copperopolis, working his way up from laborer to personnel director.

His avocation and on-again off-again career was as a draftsman, helping to design and draw everything from pieces of equipment to custom homes and commercial buildings. He first worked at an old-fashioned drafting table, then on AutoCAD. When he wasn't working on AutoCad for a job, he was doing it as a hobby.

He worked at Orchard Supply in Sonora for several years as a department manager. When he died, he had been working at Black Oak Casino in Tuolumne as a table games dealer for about six years.

In addition to his parents, Mr. Rutherford was preceded in death by his stepfather, Darwin McKenzie; stepmother, Betty Rutherford; brother, Albert; and mother-in-law, Betty Fowler.

He is survived by his wife, Lenore Rutherford, of Tuolumne; children and spouses, Candi Perkins, of Tuolumne; Bill and Michele Rutherford, of Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, and Dan and Kathy Rutherford, of Tuolumne; grandchildren, Michael Rutherford, of Tuolumne, Jeremiah Perkins, of Half Moon Bay, Heather Rutherford, of Coeur d'Alene, Joel Perkins, of Tuolumne, Amanda Perkins, of Columbia, John Rutherford, of South Carolina, and Catie Rutherford, of Tuolumne; four great-grandchildren and many nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles, cousins and other relatives.

Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home is handling arrangements. Donations may be made in his name to a charity of choice. A service was held Sunday in Standard.

Virginia M. Christie

Nov. 11, 1917 - Sept. 12, 2012

San Andreas resident Virginia M. Christie died Sept. 12 at Mark Twain Convalescent Hospital in San Andreas. She was 94.

Ms. Christie was born in San Francisco.

She moved to the San Andreas area two years ago to be closer to family friends, Ray and Joan Callahan.

She worked as a public health nurse in Merced County for more than 40 years.

No services are planned.

San Andreas Memorial Chapel is handling arrangements.