Obituaries

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Austin Sims Tracey, 21, died Friday, Feb 22., in Alameda. 

Austin was a graduate of Alameda public schools, a product of Ready Set Grow Preschool, Paden Elementary, Lincoln and Chipman middle schools. He graduated in 2016 from Alameda High School, where he was a member of the water polo team, judo club and sports medicine program. 

Austin practiced martial arts and was a longtime student at USA Kung Fu Studio, and he loved to work out. He worked at Tomatina’s and then Postmates, delivering food to friends and neighbors across the Island and East Bay.

He was a gamer and skateboarder, fashionably dressed and 420-friendly. His favorite rapper was Gucci Mane. He loved his friends with deep loyalty and much laughter; his favorite things to eat were Fiery Hot Cheetos, mac and cheese, ramen and In and Out Burger. Raspberry iced tea was his beverage of choice. 

His family calls him a bright light and a beautiful boy, and will miss him forever.

He is survived by his sisters: Savanna, Anastasia, Simone, Mia and brother-in-law Lachlan, his grandmother Lucia Tracey, his loving parents Patrick and Julia Tracey and mother Denise Sims. He was a devoted boyfriend to Tillie Skinner for three years.

Donations may be made to the National Suicide Prevention Foundation at www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org or 1-800-273-8255. Photo courtesy Gold Dust Photography.

Editor’s note: Austin Tracey was a part of the Alameda Sun’s extended family. He will be missed.

 

Virginia Hadaway Jones, 91, a longtime resident of Alameda, died Saturday, Feb. 9, at an area hospital. Virginia was born June 11, 1927, in Hot Springs, Ark., the daughter of John C. Hadaway and Nell Young Hadaway. 

Her formative years were spent in Hot Springs and in Mobile, Ala. She attended the University of Alabama for two years and graduated from the University of Arkansas with a bachelor of arts. She was a proud member of Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority. After her marriage to Howard Clement Jones in 1952, the couple lived in several different locations before settling in the Bay Area.

Following Howard’s death in 1962, she taught school at military bases in Europe eventually returning to California and teaching in the San Lorenzo Unified School District.

Virginia loved skiing in the Lake Tahoe area and enjoyed playing tennis. She was a patron of the arts and enjoyed opera, ballet and live theater performances. 

Playing bridge was one of her favorite pastimes and she loved to read and travel.

Survivors include a niece, Eileen McWilliam (Charles Grench) of Chapel Hill, N.C., and cousins Herbert (Wanda), Walter (Dayna) and Joe (Ellen) Moreland of Arkansas.

A gathering for family and friends will be held in her honor at a future date. Memorial contributions may be made to: Friends of Alameda Animal Shelter, 1590 Fortmann Way, Alameda, CA  94501 or Meals on Wheels of Alameda, P.O. Box 2534, Alameda, CA 94501.

 

Barbara Marie Baack died on Feb. 8, 2019, in San Lorenzo. Born in 1937 in Berkeley, her mother, Frieda Baggley, came from England and father, Ernest Baack, from Hoboken, N.J. 

Barb attended Oakland Technical High School, played violin in the orchestra and wrote for the school newspaper. She majored in journalism at U.C. Berkeley. Influenced by the Berkeley-based master Dorothea Lange, she also studied photography. 

She covered the Monterey Jazz Festival and John F. Kennedy’s 1962 visit to Berkeley. She also worked for the Watsonville Register-Pajaronian before becoming editor of the Alameda Naval Air Station’s newspaper. She also ran her own printing business, first in Berkeley, later in Oakland. 
She acquired several classic cars, including a 1957 Packard sedan, a Jaguar XK-120 roadster and a 1937 Buick Special. 

With her friend, Marilyn York, whom she met at the airbase, she co-founded the Alameda Naval Air Museum. 

Late in life she lost her eyesight but never slowed down. She remained active as a spokesperson for retired government employees and blind people. 

She loved her two dogs and music of all sorts. She often entertained friends by playing her harmonica. She was generous to a fault. 

She is survived by two brothers, Caleb Bach and Lawrence Baack, and their respective families. She also cared deeply about members of the Sulieti and Edward Maeli family who looked after her during her last years. 

She was laid to rest at Mountain View Cemetery in Oakland. 

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the East Bay Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

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