A final farewell: Notable Bay Area residents who died in 2020

A final farewell: Notable Bay Area residents who died in 2020

They were our neighbors. We knew their names because they served our communities, were leaders of business and industry, played or coached for the region’s sports teams, or entertained us at area events. And in 2020, we said goodbye.

Here are the stories of several notable residents who died this past year:

Ed Sprague Sr., 74: The Hayward native was a Major League Baseball pitcher who made the first relief pitching appearance for the Oakland A’s; Jan. 10

Kenny Booker Jr., 28: The East Contra Costa resident, often called “The Birdman,” was known for giving anyone who looked his way the middle-finger salute; Jan. 11

Jack Baskin, 100: The noted Bay Area affordable housing developer was a well-known philanthropist who gifts included funding for UC Santa Cruz’s engineering school; Jan. 12

Former U.S. Rep. Pete Stark died Jan. 24. He was 88.

Pete Stark, 88: The longtime public official, who founded his own bank in the 1960s, was a U.S. congressman who served southern Alameda County for 40 years; Jan. 24

Tommy J. Fulcher, 75: The longtime South Bay community activist was a past president of the San Jose/Silicon Valley NAACP; Jan. 28

Glenn Yasuda, 85: He was a co-founder of the iconic Berkeley Bowl grocery stores; Feb. 14

Ron Thompson, 66: The noted musician was considered one of the most accomplished guitarists in Bay Area blues history; Feb. 15

Larry Tesler, 74: The computer scientist was best-known for creating the cut, copy and paste commands for personal computers; Feb. 16

Mardi Durham Gualtieri Bennett Brick, 96: The former Los Gatos mayor was an advocate for the historical preservation of her town as well as for Santa Clara Valley transportation; Feb. 26

Jim Lemmon, 58: The former San Leandro police detective was better known as an East Bay girls basketball coach, leading teams at Castro Valley and Monte Vista high schools; Feb. 26

Les Mahler, 69: The longtime Bay Area journalist also was an outspoken activist against children’s cancer; Feb. 27

Joe Sullivan, 63: He was the founder of The Book Store, a beloved bookshop in Oakland’s Montclair district; March 1

Charlie Baty, 66: The blues guitarist, also known to fans as “Little Charlie,” is best known for leading Little Charlie and the Nightcats, a Sacramento-based swing revival act formed in the 1970s; March 6

Former San Jose Mayor Susan Hammer died March 7. She was 81.

Susan Hammer, 81: The former San Jose mayor was committed to expanding diversity and the arts and passing a living wage ordinance in the 1990s; March 7

Bill McPherson, 88: The San Jose Sports Hall of Famer coached football at Bellarmine Prep and Santa Clara University, then later served as a defensive assistant on the 49ers’ five Super Bowl-winning teams; March 17

John F. Murray, 92: The former chief of pulmonary and critical care at San Francisco General Hospital also was credited with diagnosing a lung disease known as acute respiratory distress syndrome; March 24

Bob Campbell, 82: The longtime public servant was a Richmond city councilman who later served in the state Assembly for 16 years; March 27

Rich Pelletier: As quarterback in 1982, he helped the De La Salle football team to its first undefeated season; March 29

Richard Wisdom, 81: The award-winning photographer for the San Jose Mercury News later was known as a volunteer for several charities in East Contra Costa; April 1

Gene Zahas, 72; The Oakland native was a noted businessman and advocate for educational opportunities; April 7

LGBTQ pioneer Phyllis Lyon died April. She was 95.

Phyllis Lyon, 95: The longtime LGBTQ activist married her partner in 2008, one of the first same-sex marriages in California after a landmark state Supreme Court ruling; April 9

Leslie Lawton: The Sunnyvale resident was a champion of orchard preservation and served as a leader at the Sunnyvale Historical Society and Museum Association; April 15

Bobby Winkles, 90: The College Baseball Hall of Famer was the manager of the Oakland A’s in the mid-1970s and served as a coach for the San Francisco Giants, among other teams; April 17

Michael McClure, 87: The famed Beat poet published more than 30 books of poetry, plays and anthologies, and was a professor at California College of the Arts for 43 years; May 5

Jorge Santana, 68: The guitarist, who was a younger brother of musician Carlos Santana, played with the band Malo as well as had a solo career; May 14

Andrew Mousalimas, 95: The Oakland native was part of an elite commando unit during World War II that raised havoc among the German forces, then later was a pioneer in fantasy football and trivia contests; May 20

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Chester Farrow, 77: The longtime scoreboard operator for the Oakland A’s also was a teacher and a concert promoter; May 24

Bob Kieve, 98; The former speechwriter for President Dwight Eisenhower later was a radio station owner in San Jose and served on the boards of several South Bay organizations;  May 24

Jeffrey Boozer, 49: The Oakland-based artist and illustrator created concert posters for several musicians and worked himself as a DJ; May 30

Singer Bonnie Pointer died June 8. She was 69

Bonnie Pointer, 69: The Oakland native was a founding member of the Grammy-winning vocal group The Pointer Sisters, then later went on to have a solo career; June 8

Claudell Washington, 65: The Berkeley native, who had a 17-year Major League Baseball career, broke in with the Oakland A’s at age 19 and was a two-time All-Star; June 10

Gail Steele, 83: The longtime public servant — she served on both the Hayward City Council and the Alameda County Board of Supervisors — was an advocate for children and the poor; June 26

Bert Lubin, 81; The pediatrician later served as president and CEO at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland; June 27

Joe Gunter, 73: The two-term Salinas mayor was a former police officer in the city and had a legacy of community involvement; June 29

TV personality Grant Imahara died July 13. He was 49.

Tobie Gene Levingston, 86: He was the founder of the East Bay Dragons, the Bay Area’s first all-Black motorcycle club and one of the first in the U.S.; July 7

Eddie Gale, 78: The acclaimed trumpeter was a big part of the South Bay jazz scene, earning the nickname “San Jose’s Ambassador of Jazz”; July 10

Grant Imahara, 49: The former co-host of the TV show “MythBusters” also was well-known in Hollywood for his work in electronics and animatronics; July 13

Gayle Montgomery, 86: The newspaper journalist served as political editor of the Oakland Tribune, then became head of public relations for East Bay Municipal Utility District; July 17

Truong Tien Dat, 87: The former former South Vietnamese lawyer, judge and senator became a real estate broker in San Jose and helped many refugees find work in that field; July 19

Jessie Mangaliman, 63: The former Mercury News reporter later became director of public relations at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco; July 20

Actress Olivia de Havilland died July 26. She was 104.

Olivia de Havilland, 104: The Oscar-winning actress, who grew up in Saratoga and performed in South Bay theaters before getting her break in Hollywood, starred in such films as “Gone With the Wind,” “The Adventures of Robin Hood” and “Rebecca”; July 26

Ralph Barbieri, 74: The Bay Area sports-talk radio personality was considered one of the “founding fathers” of KNBR; Aug. 3

Bob March, 93: The former TV personality gained fame playing the title role on the children’s show “Captain Satellite” on KTVU in Oakland; Aug. 6

Rick Doyle, 65: The former San Jose city attorney defended the city through some of its most tumultuous times; Aug. 23

Ann Getty, 79: The San Francisco philanthropist gave to scores of Bay Area nonprofits and was a longtime donor to Gov. Gavin Newsom’s political campaigns; Sept. 14

Gary Hughes, 79: The Bay Area native was longtime baseball scout who worked for several MLB teams, including the San Francisco Giants; Sept. 19

Gale Sayers, 77: The NFL Hall of Famer was a legendary running back with the Chicago Bears, then later was a business owner in the East Bay; Sept. 22

Keith Hufnagel, 46: The skateboarder-turned-businessman created his Huf line of products in San Francisco; Sept. 24

Joe Morgan, 77: The Baseball Hall of Famer was an Oakland native who starred for the Cincinnati Reds, had stints with both the Giants and the A’s, then became a baseball broadcaster; Oct. 11

Don Pellman, 105: The Santa Clara resident broke scores of records at the 2015 Senior Olympics, including 100 meters, high jump and shot put; Oct. 11

Fred Dean, 68: The Pro Football Hall of Famer was a defensive end who helped transform the San Francisco 49ers into one of the great NFL dynasties; Oct. 14

James Redford, 58: The Marin County-based filmmaker and activist was the son of actor Robert Redford; Oct. 16

Mario Henderson, 35: The former NFL tackle played four seasons with the Oakland Raiders, Oct. 21

Diane di Prima, 86: The former San Francisco poet laureate was one of the few women writers in the Beat movement; Oct. 25

Barbara Taylor, 73: The longtime political reporter for KCBS was the San Francisco City Hall bureau chief for more than three decades; Oct. 26

Restaurant owner Cecilia Chiang died Oct. 28. She was 100.

Cecilia Chiang, 100: The owner of San Francisco’s legendary Mandarin restaurant helped introduce authentic Chinese food to American palates; Oct. 28

Enrico “Rico” Cinquini, 96: The longtime community leader helped pave the way for Oakley’s incorporation in 1999; Nov. 4

Ricky Ricardo, 75: The owner Ricky’s sports bar in San Leandro turned his father’s pub into a haven for East Bay sports fans; Nov. 14

Zura, 39: The western lowland gorilla was beloved by visitors at the San Francisco Zoo; Nov. 20

Daniel Tellep, 89: Retired chairman and CEO of the Lockheed Martin Corp. and longtime resident of Saratoga.

Marv Marinovich, 81: The Watsonville High grad was a star at USC who played with the Oakland Raiders, then later served as a strength coach for the team; Dec. 3

Robert Hess Sr., 86: The longtime Bay Area horse trainer ran horses at both Golden Gate Fields and Bay Meadows; Dec. 5

Anthony Veasna So, 28: The San Francisco-based science fiction writer won acclaim for “Afterparties,” his debut story collection; Dec. 8

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