Union Democrat staff

Sheldon Bissell

March 19, 1936 - Dec. 16, 2013

Third-generation Calaveras County resident and founder of the Driving Under the Influence Reporters Reward of California program Sheldon Bissell died Dec. 16 in a car accident in Mountain Ranch. He was 77.

Mr. Bissell was born in Southern California, the son of Bruce and Barbara Bissell. His family returned to Calaveras when he was 3 years old. He graduated from Calaveras High School.

He worked as a contractor in Calaveras County for 55 years. He was also an inventor and enjoyed tinkering. He invented a hose clamp for firefighter hoses and a kind of wheelchair brake, his family said.

Mr. Bissell founded the DUIRR program in 1983 after his son, Elliot Bissell, died in a car accident involving a drunk driver in 1981.

The program, which once covered seven central California counties, including Amador, Calaveras and Tuolumne, offers a $100 rewards to people to report suspected drunken drivers, later leading to an arrest.

The program went dormant in 1999 because of a lack of funding, but was relaunched by Bissell in 2008 in Calaveras County.

Mr. Bissell was preceded in death by his mother and stepfather, Barbara and Eldie Bartlett; his father and stepmother, Bruce and Laura Lee Bissell; and his son, Elliot Bissell.

He is survived by his wife Malinda Bissell, of Mountain Ranch; daughters, Terry McBride and Annie Curtis, both of Mountain Ranch; brothers, Angelo Bissell, of Idaho, Allen Bissell, of Oregon, and Eldie Bartlett, of West Point; stepchildren, Jamison Truelock, of San Andreas, Jay Truelock, of Jackson, and Jenny Truelock, Sonora; granddaughter, Kathleen McBride, of Mountain Ranch; and grandsons, Jason, Steven and Joshua McBride, all of Sonora.

Donations in his memory can be made to the DUIRR program, c/o the Calaveras County Administration, 891 Mountain Ranch Road, San Andreas, CA 95249.

A graveside and celebration of life have been held.

San Andreas Memorial Chapel is handling arrangements.

Wayne Hargis

Sept. 23, 1936 - Dec. 8, 2013

Sonora resident Wayne Hargis died Dec. 8 at his home. He was 77.

Mr. Hargis was born in Tulsa, Okla., the son of Bryan W. and Lucille Hargis.

He graduated from Tulsa Central High School in 1954 and earned a bachelor's of science degree in industrial engineering from Oklahoma State University in 1959. He also earned the highest score on a registered engineering test administered at the university that year.

He married Sherrie Forbes in April 1957. They had two children, Cindy and David Hargis. They later divorced.

Mr. Hargis worked at various industries as an industrial engineer before starting his own printed circuit board company, PCB Inc., in 1976. He served as owner-president for a number of years before retiring.

He moved to Sonora 16 years ago to be closer to family.

Mr. Hargis enjoyed music and played first-chair cello through high school and later played guitar.

He enjoyed camping, fishing, scuba diving, water and and snow skiing. He also liked cooking and would fix gourmet meals when camping, his family said.

Mr. Hargis earned a private pilot's license and flew to Oklahoma, Mexico and around California.

Mr. Hargis was preceded in death by his father, Bryan W. Hargis, in 1960; his mother, Lucille Hargis, in 1992; and his son, David Hargis, in 1982; and his son-in-law, Larry Garcia, in 1994.

He is survived by his daughter, Cindy Garcia, of Sonora; grandson, David Garcia, of Sonora; his siblings and their spouses, Elaine and Ken Barton , of Tulsa, and Bryan and Nancy Hargis, of Santa Rosa; and three nephews.

A celebration of life has been held.

Family and friends will gather to spread his remains at a later date.

Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home is handling arrangements.


BRENON - Don Brenon, 88, of Tuttletown, died Sunday at his home. Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home is handling arrangements.

CLARK - Clarence Clark, 89, of Sonora, died Sunday at Linwood Manor Care Center in Visalia. Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home is handling arrangements.

DANIEL - John Daniel, 83, of Tuttletown, died Friday at his home. Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home is handling arrangements.

ROUSE - Marie Rouse, 94, of Columbia, died Sunday in Hughson. Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home is handling arrangements.

STEARNS - Gerda Stearns, 94, of Twain Harte, died Friday at Sonora Regional Medical Center. Heuton Memorial Chapel is handling arrangements.

STRONG - Walter Strong, 78, of Tuolumne died Saturday at Avalon Care Center of Sonora. Heuton Memorial Chapel is handling arrangements