Union Democrat staff

Dorothy Mae 'Dot' (Lane) Higuera

Nov. 6, 1927 - Dec. 8, 2013

Tuolumne resident Dorothy Mae "Dot" (Lane) Higuera died Sunday at her home. She was 86.

Mrs. Higuera was born in Tuolumne, the daughter of Oliver and Elsie Lane.

During the Great Depression, her family moved to Graeagle, in Plumas County. They returned to Tuolumne County in 1939 and moved to the Mono Vista area.

She had three children with her first husband. They later divorced.

She married Donald Higuera at the First Presbyterian Church of the 49ers in Columbia in 1956. They settled in Tuolumne in 1958.

Mrs. Higuera was a member Summerville Elementary School District Board of Trustees and was a founding member of the Tuolumne Baptist Church.

She was a historian and was particularly interested in the development of Tuolumne. She was also a docent at the Tuolumne City Memorial Museum for several years.

She and her husband traveled throughout the United States, Canada, Alaska and Hawaii.

She enjoyed gardening and spending time with her family and friends.

Mrs. Higuera was preceded in death by her parents; two brothers; and two sisters.

She is survived by her husband of 57 years, Donald Higuera, of Tuolumne; her children and their spouses, Robin Schott, of Soulsbyville, Michael Higuera, of Tuolumne, Tamara Bettanini, of Tuolumne, Paulette and Frank Wortham, of Chowchilla, and Raymond and Roxanna Hilliard, of Lodi; grandchildren, Michael Schott, Timothy Schott, Scott Thomson, Cory Wortham, Tony Bettanini, Steve Bettanini, Jennifer Burke, Jessica Fatouh and Mathew Hilliard; nine great-grandchildren; brother, George Lane, of Sacramento; and many nieces and nephews.

Donations in her memory can be made to Hospice of the Sierra, 20100 Cedar Road North, Sonora, CA 95370.

A private graveside service will be held at Carters Cemetery.

Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home is handling arrangements.

Robert Meng

March 31, 1948 - Nov. 27, 2013

Sonora resident Robert Meng died Nov. 27 at Sonora Regional Medical Center. He was 65.

Mr. Meng was born in Elgin, Ill., the son of Raymond and Carroll Meng.

He worked as a manager in retail sales in the Bay Area and Sonora for 30 years. He also owned a bait shop on the Sacramento Delta for several years.

He settled in Sonora 15 years ago.

He enjoyed fishing, hunting, golfing and watching sports.

Mr. Meng was preceded in death by his parents; and his brother, James Meng.

He is survived by his son, Christopher Meng, of Arkansas; sisters, Jeanette Meng, of Sonora, and Cathy Wooten, of Saratoga; and grandson, Keith Meng, of Arkansas.

No services are planned.

Heuton Memorial Chapel is handling arrangements.

Dean 'Deano' Verner

Oct. 6, 1946 - Nov. 28, 2013

Sonora resident Dean "Deano" Verner died Nov. 28 at UC Davis Medical Center in Sacramento. He was 67.

Mr. Verner was born in Glendale, the son of Leo and Erma Verner.

He worked as an electrician for 40 years. He retired from the Modesto Irrigation District in 2008.

He and his wife moved from Santa Cruz to Sonora 15 years ago because they liked the area.

Mr. Verner was a member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.

He was also a motorcycle enthusiast and enjoyed riding his Harley-Davidson motorcycle.

Mr. Verner was preceded in death by parents, who were longtime Los Banos residents.

He is survived by his companion of 25 years and wife of three years, Danelle "Dani" Flanagan Verner, of Sonora; his daughters, Deena Verner-Railey, of Jamestown, Ronda Mollenkopf, of Ohio, and Katelyn Schaffernoth, of Jamestown; his siblings, Dale Verner, of Loyalton, in Sierra County, and Karen Overland, of Plano, Texas; and grandchildren, Shane and Troy Martin, of Ohio, and Jessie and Lea Viele, of Santa Cruz.

Services will be held at a later date.

Heuton Memorial Chapel is handling arrangements.

Karen Marie (Nichols) Young

Oct. 9, 1952 - Nov. 26, 2013

Former Sonora resident Karen Marie (Nichols) Young, of Elk Grove, died Nov. 26 at Sutter Memorial Hospital in Sacramento. She was 61.

Mrs. Young was born in Marin County, the daughter of Marie P. and Wilfred W. "Bill" Nichols.

Her family settled in Jamestown in 1967.

She graduated from Neil Cummins Elementary School in Corte Madera, Sonora High School in 1970 and earned an associate's degree in business from Columbia Junior College in 1972.

She married Dave Young in 1979. They lived in South Lake Tahoe and Sparks, Nev., before settling in Elk Grove about 25 years ago.

She worked for the Tuolumne County Health Department for many years before owning and operating a medical transcription company in Elk Grove for more than 25 years.

As a young girl she was active in Camp Fire girls, modeling, swimming, water and snow skiing, horseback riding and horse training.

She was later active in a car club, the Capital Buick Club of Sacramento.

She enjoyed music, crocheting, sewing, tailoring and cooking.

Mrs. Young enjoyed driving and traveling with her husband in their RV.

She and her husband raised champion American Kennel Club old English sheepdogs and Kuvasz dogs.

She also designed and built her homes in Sonora and Elk Grove.

Mrs. Young was preceded in death by her father, Bill Nichols, in 1963; her mother, Marie P. Keagy, in 1994; and uncle, William F. Beatty, in 2000.

She is survived by her husband of 34 years, Dave Young, of Elk Grove; her siblings and their spouses, William W. Nichols, of Sonora, and Susan A. and Ralph W. Hiemstra, of Sonora; her nephews, Andrew R.W. Hiemstra and his wife, Nichole Hiemstra, and Thomas R. Hiemstra, all of Sonora; and four great-nephews.

A memorial service has been held. She was buried in East Lawn Elk Grove Memorial Park.


COOK - Brenda Cook, 63, of Tuolumne, died Thursday at Sonora Regional Medical Center. Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home is handling arrangements.