Union Democrat staff

Obituary policy

Obituaries, including photos, are published at a pre-paid fee based on size. The deadline is 5 p.m. two business days prior to publication. Call 532-7151, fax 532-5139 or send to obits@uniondemocrat.com.

Memorial ads are published at a pre-paid fee based on size. The deadline is noon two business days prior to publication. Please call 588-4555 for complete information.

TJ Pitts

Sept. 1, 1933 - May 10, 2014

TJ Pitts passed away on May 10, 2014. He is survived by his wife of 61 years, Darlene Pitts; his sons, Terry and Randy; daughters, Debbie and Gina; 16 grandchildren and 23 great-grandchildren; his brothers WC and Ed; sisters, Ella Mae, Jean and Norma.

He was born on Sept. 1, 1933, in Waynesboro, Miss. He served in the U.S. Air Force from 1953 to 1956. TJ retired from the U.S. Postal Service after 22 years.

Services were held in Mesa, Ariz., on May 14, 2014. Larry and Carol Culp officiated the services.

TJ enjoyed his golf cart, going to dances, ballgames and old Westerns on television.

Gary Guy

van Den Bergh

Oct. 21, 1932 - March 17, 2014

Gary Guy van Den Bergh of Jamestown, Calif., passed away on March 17, 2014, in the County of Stanislaus at the age of 81.

Services will be held at the Country Cowboy Church in Sonora, Calif., from 3 to 5 p.m. Sunday, June 8, 2014, and the burial will be at San Joaquin Valley National Cemetery at 12:30 p.m. on Monday, June 9.

Gary was a loving father and friend to many. He was a veteran of the Korean War. He proudly served in the U.S. Navy from 1951 through 1955 and was honorably discharged. Gary truly enjoyed being of service to many organizations including the American Red Cross, Tuolumne County Sheriff CSU (Community Service Unit), Korean War Veterans Association as an honor guard, Veterans of Foreign War and the Tuolumne Veterans Committee to name a few.

Gary was born to Toby and Roaslie van Den Bergh in San Francisco, Calif., on October 21, 1932.

Gary was survived by his Darlin' Lou Anderson, of Jamestown, Calif.; son, Scott van Den Bergh and his wife, Claudia, of North Fork, Calif.; son Kurt van Den Bergh and his wife, Angela, of Burleson, Texas; son Gary van Den Bergh and his wife, Sandra, of The Dalles, Ore.; and daughter Kelly Duffy, and her husband, Kevin, of Magalia, Calif.; eight grandchildren; and one great granddaughter.

Gary was preceded in death by father Toby and mother Roaslie van Den Bergh and daughter Debbie van Den Bergh.

The family requests instead of flowers, please make donations in memory of Gary Guy van Den Bergh to the American Red Cross, the Sonora VFW, The Country Cowboy Church (Sonora, Calif.) or the charity of your choice.

William 'Bill' Freeze

Feb. 20,1918 - May 25, 2014

Born on a Montana homestead to Henry and Juliana Freeze in Crow Rock, near Miles City, Bill attended grade school at U-ALL, a one-room prairie schoolhouse, then Custer County High School. He enlisted in the Army in January 1941. During World War II, he served in the 5th Division in Europe, including combat in the Battle of the Bulge. Raised speaking German, he sometimes interpreted in interrogation of captured German officers. Being regular Army, when the war in Europe ended, he was shipped to the Philippines for the build-up to invade Japan. He spoke little of his wartime experiences, but he was proud of his service and it shaped his life.

While still a soldier, he wed "the love of his life," Kathleen Kennelly, in San Francisco. By discharge he attained rank of Senior Warrant Officer, in part because he memorized the entire Uniform Code of Military Justice preparing for acceptance to Judge Advocate General's School. Bill completed college in Spokane and San Francisco, becoming a Certified Public Accountant. He practiced in San Francisco and for more than 60 years in Sonora and Jamestown, serving longtime clients through the age of 95. He was also a well-known businessman and developer.

Bill was outgoing and friendly, often helping others with their careers. He had a clear, blue-eyed gaze and a terrific sense of humor with an infectious laugh. Faith, family, country, community … Bill cared about these most.

He was predeceased by his wife, Kathleen, in 1986; by son William Freeze Jr. in 2013; and by older brothers Otto and Reinhart.

His siblings Dan, Maggie, Ruth, Emma, Martha and Ben, along with 15 nieces and nephews survive him.

The family wishes to express its gratitude to Bill's caregivers: Seniority Care of Sonora; and for their support and many visits, family friends Veda M. Gilman CPA, Kebra Stapp, Gary Smith, Mark Khoury and Monique and Gregg Foster; to the Yountville California Veterans Home staff, and to Hospice of Napa Valley: nurse Carolyn Craig and social worker Lynne Benatovich.

A graveside service for family and friends is scheduled for 2 p.m., Friday, June 6, at St. Patrick's Catholic Cemetery in Sonora. If so inclined, please consider donating to a veterans' charity of your choice.

Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home is handling the arrangements.

Death notices

Death Notices in The Union Democrat are published free of charge. They include the name, age and town of residence of the deceased, the date of death; service information; and memorial contribution information. The deadline is noon the day before publication.


HORNE - Bill Horne, 79, of Twain Harte, died May 27 at Mercy Hospital in Sacramento. A celebration of life will be held at a later date. Daneri Mortuary in Jackson is handling arrangements.

TOMASOVICH - Christopher "Chris" Tomasovich, 48, of Sonora, died Thursday in a logging accident in the Rim Fire burn area. A memorial service will be held at 3 p.m. Friday at the Sonora Elks Lodge, 100 Elk Drive. Terzich and Wilson Funeral Home is handling arrangements.