Obituaries for the week of 6/27/2012

Claudia Largent Blake, 62

Emil Paul Herbst, 87

Ken and Rosemary Murray

Olive V. Fox, 91

Susan Joy Johnson-Cussins, 56


Claudia Blake passed away peacefully in Redwood City June 15, 2012, after a long struggle against breast cancer. She was 62 years old.

The only child of Verner and Irene Weinreich, Claudia was raised in Greenville and moved to Sacramento at age 17 to attend court reporting college. She was one of the youngest certified shorthand reporters in the state. An early advocate of court reporting technology, Claudia was a skilled court reporter and a dedicated entrepreneur who owned and operated court reporting agencies in Anaheim and Los Angeles. She and her husband Thomas Adrien Blake moved to Hillsborough in 1996.

Claudia is survived by her husband Tom and their son, John Fredrick Adrien Blake. She is also survived by her parents, Verner and Irene Weinreich, of Yuba City; and by John’s older brothers, Thomas Carlyle Blake (Milena) and Brian William Blake, whom she parented after the death of their mother.

Claudia will be fondly remembered as a supportive mother of the three boys and as an intelligent and independent person who faced challenges with quiet determination.

Interment will be June 30 in Glen Oaks Memorial Park in Chico followed by a celebration of her life at Peach Tree Lane Church of Christ in Yuba City. The family respectfully suggests donations to a charity of your choice in lieu of flowers.


Emil Paul Herbst passed peacefully from this life at his home in Central Point, Ore., Monday evening, June 18, at the age of 87.

Paul was born Oct. 16, 1924, in Fort Pierce, Fla., to Emil and Anna Herbst. As the eldest of two boys, he helped to raise his younger sibling (Joe Herbst) when his mother passed in the fourth year of his life. The Catholic schools of Florida were instrumental in shaping his early education and moral foundation. Life wasn’t easy for the family trio during the Depression era; this ultimately served to hone Paul’s ability to improvise and build from whatever materials were at hand, a talent which would serve him well in later life. It also helped to develop a deeply engrained and powerful work ethic.

Paul’s father moved himself and the two boys from Florida when Paul was 16, ultimately arriving in Northern California (Quincy-Sloat area). From 16 to 18 years of age Paul worked at various odd jobs associated with logging and lumber. At 18, he was drafted into the military to help win WWII. Paul spent four years in the Army, with the time served in the infantry fighting in the South Pacific islands.

After an honorable discharge Paul returned to civilian life in Quincy. An outing to the Roseville area put him in touch with his future wife, Delores Minard (nicknamed Mickey), whom he married shortly thereafter (November 1946). This union would ultimately produce three children over 10 years: Jimmy, Pauline and Michael. Paul worked a series of odd jobs until going to work for California’s transportation system (Caltrans) in the mid-1950s, a job he would hold until retiring in 1988.

In the late 1950s Paul went to work part-time for Graeagle Land and Water Co. as a grader operator. After leaving Caltrans, he continued on with Graeagle Land and Water as a seasonal employee, a position he would finally retire from in 2009. Paul was proud and honored to have been a part of Graeagle Land and Water Co.’s vision and activities for some 50 years.

Paul was a gregarious individual and made many close friends wherever he went. In the late 1960s, Paul became a member of the Blue Lodge (Masonic order) in Quincy and proceeded with great alacrity to become involved with a number of related organizations including the Commandry, Eastern Star, White Shrine, the Shriners, Rainbow and the York Rite and Scottish Rite orders. He was dedicated to this body of organizations to the end of his life.

Paul was the embodiment of a number of good character qualities: he was moral, trustworthy, loyal, faithful, dependable, hard-working, supportive, kind and charitable. He was always willing to do something for someone else at his own expense; he was always willing to go the extra mile and to do the tasks no one else really wanted to do. His favorite motto was “Onward and upward.” Indeed, he often used emergency room visits as an opportunity to tell the doctors and nurses how richly God had blessed him in life.

Paul was preceded in death by his wife, Delores, in 2010; and is survived by his brother, Joe Herbst, of Redding; daughter, Pauline Ramelli, of Chino Valley, Ariz.; and son Michael Herbst, of Medford, Ore. He is also survived by his two grandchildren, Kenny Ramelli and Tammy McQuire, and by his six great-grandchildren, Troy, Danny, Brian, Michaelia, Patrick and Katie. He also leaves behind what must be about a million very close friends who will sorely miss him.

A brief memorial will be held in the chapel at Eagle Point National Cemetery in Eagle Point, Ore., Thursday, July 19, at 10 a.m. Afterward his ashes will be interred beside his wife’s in the presence of a military honor guard. A reception will be held thereafter at Shepard of the Valley Catholic Church in Central Point, Ore.


Ken Murray was born Jan. 7, 1928, in San Francisco to George and Mary (Dean) Murray. He and Rosemary lived for many years in San Francisco, Moraga, Diamond Springs and later in Walnut Creek.

Ken was a 50-year member of the Masonic Lodge where he became Master Mason. Ken loved fishing, camping, motorcycling and “puttering.”

But most of all he loved returning every year to Lake Almanor, with frequent trips to Seneca where his mother’s family (Dean) mined for gold.

Rosemary was born Dec. 26, 1927, in San Francisco and graduated from UCSF Nursing School in 1950.

She was an avid bridge player and enjoyed teaching new players, as well as playing party bridge with friends and competing in duplicate tournaments. Her only regret was not quite reaching Life Master Level in duplicate bridge.

The folks spent every summer at Lake Almanor and now will be buried together in the Prattville Cemetery among the pine trees. Please join us July 3 at 10 a.m. at the Prattville Cemetery for graveside services.

Ken and Rosemary are survived by daughters Linda Murray Jorgensen and Judith Murray Gablehouse; granddaughter Jennifer Jorgensen; and niece Lynn Shreve Rickman.


Olive V. Fox, longtime Lake Almanor resident, died June 16, 2012. She was born April 5, 1921, in Trade Lake, Wis. Her husband, John W. Fox, predeceased her in 2005.

Olive is survived by a brother, Robert E. Melin, and his wife Joan; a sister, Jane D. Krezman; and many nieces and nephews.

At her request, no services will take place. Inurnment will take place in the Chester District Cemetery with her husband. An opportunity to express condolences to the family and sign the memorial guest register is available online at fehrmanmortuary.com.


Quincy resident Susan Joy Johnson-Cussins died at her residence in East Quincy Thursday, June 21, 2012, at the age of 56.

She was born Nov. 26, 1955, in Reno, Nev., to Frank and Joyce (Murdy) Hilton.

Susan is survived by her daughters, Frankie Joy Johnson, of Portola, and Elizabeth Johnson, of Quincy; along with a sister, Judy Hicks, of Reno, Nev.

She was predeceased by her husband, Melvin G. Cussins, and a brother, Frank Johnson Jr.

A celebration of Susan’s life will be announced at a later date. An opportunity to express condolences to the family and sign the memorial guest register is available online at fehrmanmortuary.com. Any remembrances in Susan’s memory can be made to the family to help defray final expenses, c/o Fehrman Mortuary and Crematory, P.O. Box 53, Quincy, CA 95971.


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