Ross Melvin Pike, a resident of Danville, passed away March 22 at the age of 55.
He was born July 30, 1951, in California, graduated from Ygnacio Valley High School in Walnut Creek, and enlisted in the U.S. Army. He served for three years as a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne division. After that, he worked in the facility maintenance industry and was a managing partner at Diversified Maintenance Services.
When Ross proposed to Merri, his wife of 27 years, he promised to "show her the world" and he did: He traveled to all seven continents, 50 states, and more than 35 countries and was planning a trip to China.
He is survived by Merri; his children Billy and Kerri; his parents Fern and George Pike; three granddaughters; brothers Carl and George Junior; and many cousins, nieces and nephews.
A memorial service was held March 31 at the Danville 2nd LDS Ward in Danville. The family requests donations to the American Heart Association or Huntington's Disease of America.
Lillian W. Yonke
Danville resident Lillian W. Yonke died March 23 at the age of 92. She was born Nov. 10, 1914.
She was the beloved mother of Mark R. Yonke, mother-in-law of Carol A. Yonke of Danville; grandmother of Mark V. Yonke and Troy R. Yonke of Richmond; step-grandmother of Dona Lavery of Empire, and Paul Schmidt of Georgia; step-greatmother of Johnna, Amber, John, Tyler, and Mackenzie; sisters Grace Heimlick of Livermore and Gladys Garbarino of Dublin. She was preceded in death by husband, Rudolph F. Yonke, and son Gary W. Yonke.
Services were private. Donations are suggested to the Cancer Society.
Veronica 'Ruth' Foley
Veronica "Ruth" Foley, a resident of Danville, died Mar. 23 at the age of 86.
She was born to John Patrick and Veronica Foley in Brooklyn, NY, on June 16, 1920.
She worked as a traffic manager for coffee and tea importers, and for many years was with Henry P. Thompson working on Wall Street. She relocated to the Bay Area with her extended family in 1972. Once in California, she joined ACLI Intl., continuing to work in coffee and tea importing and living in Moraga. In 2003, she moved to Diablo Lodge in Danville and joined the parish at St. Isidore Catholic Church.
She was predeceased by her brother John Gilbert Foley and sister-in-law, Grace Foley. She is survived by her nieces and nephew; and grand-nieces and nephews.
A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated at St. Isidore Catholic Church on March 29. The family requests that friends contribute to the social service charity of their choice.
Karel Newman, a Danville resident, died March 26 at the age of 79 after a protracted illness. He was born Feb. 5, 1928.
He left his home in the Czechoslovak Republic in 1948, worked his way across post-war Europe, moved to Australia, and finally immigrated with his young family to the United States in 1956. After briefly working in retail sales, he chose to focus on real estate. He gained further education at UC Berkeley and Oregon State University and founded his first real estate office in 1971, eventually expanding his firm to six offices serving all parts of Contra Costa County. He retired from residential real estate in 1982 and from commercial real estate in 2002.
He is survived by his beloved wife of 54 years, Eliska; sons David and Karel; and four grandchildren. Funeral services were held March 31 at the Oak Park Hills Chapel of Walnut Creek. Donations may be made to the American Cancer Society: Hope Lodge, 636 W Lexington St., Baltimore, MD 21201.