Obituaries | August 15, 2008 | Danville Express | |

Danville Express

Community Pulse - August 15, 2008


Edward H. Nienaber

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Posted by David A. W. Young, a resident of San Ramon
on Jul 20, 2010 at 3:02 pm

I just found an obituary dated 8/15/08 concerning the late John Straface and the housing development created by Volk McClain Communities in the 1960s.

I was the Secretary/Treasurer of the Company in the mid 60's and worked with Hank Cupples but I do not recall John Straface probably because, by the time I joined the firm Volk and McClain were on their last model home tract and not long after I had the misfortune to be with these great developers presiding over the ultimate break-up of their partnership which, as I recall, had lasted some 16 years all the way from developments in San Diego to the gathering of some seventeen farms in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties to creat what they then named"SAN RAMON" which I think was really DUBLIN!

One of the old farm houses became our B&B for the head office was in Los Angeles and we needed a place to stay when working on the development. The partners even had their own airplanes and landing strip on the property until expansion used up the strip!

The freeway came into being by eminent domain and a law suit concerning the value of the taken land. It was settled after the first 3,000 acres had been built out and the remaining 1,500 acres wers sold in the dissolution by a company from West Los Angeles known as Property Research Corporation represented by B.Wayne Hughes who, to-day, is the prime mover for Private Storage Inc. and a multi-millionaire.

Our bumper sticker said "LIVE IN LOVELY SAN RAMON" but with a pair of scissors I changed mine to "LOVE IN LIVELY SAN RAMON" Bob McClain was not too happy about that!

I set up the number controls for the parcel system when our engineers created the master plan of the Community prior to the sale of the last 1,500 acres. For all I know, these identities might still be a part of parcel numbers in property tax bills.

We had a annual golf game for our staff and our advisors in the San Ramon Country Club and I stll have my bright read blazer that I was presented with and it is a Christmas item in my wardrobe!San Francisco Federla S & L were always present at these events for they were our main lenders in conjunction with the old U.C.B.

Thanks for reminding me about all this avan if I am a bit late.

David A. W. Young
Newport Beach.