Obituaries

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Steven Sylvester Sparrow was born in Oakland to Frazier Sparrow, Sr. and Mary Agnes English Sparrow. Steven was the youngest child and the apple of his mother’s eye.  He was affectionately called Stevie by family and friends.  He professed his faith in Christ, uniting with the Bethel Missionary Baptist Church, in Alameda under the late Dr. Herbert Guice, Pastor and was baptized at an early age.

He attended Encinal High School and graduated in 1978. After graduating, Stevie began working at Encinal as a custodian. Stevie had a take charge attitude, the other custodians thought Stevie was their supervisor.  He had a special chair at the head of the table, keys and radio; always giving them orders on what their assignment was for the day.

He was the “Unofficial Head Coach” for several sports teams.  In his role as Unofficial Head Coach he would have a meeting with the football coaches, giving them encouragement and input before each game.  They considered Stevie the #1 Jet!  He truly loved Encinal and gifted Encinal shirts to each family member that graduated, so they too could represent his school.  Stevie was a member of the Encinal High Boosters that met for breakfast the 1st Tuesday of every month.  The club was for former athletes and donors; however, Stevie was right there playing a major part.

Stevie was known throughout Alameda and was affectionately called “The Mayor of Alameda”.  Stevie met no strangers and had photographic memory when it came to the telephone numbers of family and friends.  He had many titles, because he was so important to many people.  His family title was “Town Cryer”; Stevie made sure he stayed in contact with each family member and was the first to provide them with family updates.

Stevie loved camping, fishing, wrestling, eating and just hanging out in Alameda.  He really had a special love for sports and would call family and friends to let them know the game is on; even if the person didn’t like the sport.

He was preceded in death by his father (Frazier Sparrow, Sr.) and brother (Frazier Sparrow, Jr.).

On January 10, 2020, Stevie departed this life surrounded by love ones.  He will always be remembered for his unconditional love for his family, friends and Encinal High School.  Stevie leaves to cherish his precious memory his loving mother, Mary Agnes Sparrow; sister, Pamela A. Sparrow Lewis; nieces, Glennisha S. White, Glennielle S. White, Vernicia T. Anderson; nephew, Kenneth G. Aubrey; and a host of other family and friends.

A public viewing has been set for Monday, Jan. 20,  from 4 to 8 p.m. A funeral service will follow on Tuesday, Jan. 21, at noon. Both services will be held at Chapel of the Chimes, 4499 Piedmont Ave., Oakland, CA 94611. Call (510) 654-0123 for more information.

Violet Virginia was born to Isabell and Alexander Legge in Alameda on March 8, 1925. Vi, as she was known, attended St. Joseph Elementary School along with her younger sister, Maureen Legge Richardson. Vi graduated from Alameda High in 1943. 

She later met a Navy man, David Cary from Lake County, while working at the Army Offices in Oakland. The two were married in 1947 and settled in Alameda where they raised their four children: Maureen, Virginia, Brian and Patricia.

Vi and Dave were very active in St. Joseph Parish, belonging to various groups and committees. Vi was a member of the Mothers’ Guild and the Garden Club. Parish socials and dances were special events for the couple, and they enjoyed the company of a wide circle of friends in the community. 

For several years, Vi worked at St. Joseph Elementary School as a teacher’s aide and served on the Alameda Hospital Auxiliary. In the early 1980s, Dave, who worked for the Department of Defense, accepted a position in Stuttgart, Germany, where Vi volunteered for the Red Cross. For three years the couple indulged in their love of travel, visiting many European countries and her dear cousins in County Down, Northern Ireland, the homeland of her parents.

Vi loved storytelling, music and dancing, reflective of her Irish heritage. Many of her friends marveled at her ability to recount the history of Alameda, including the neighborhoods and interesting personalities who once called the city home.  

A major movie buff, Vi loved attending the Alameda Theatre, where she worked as an usher as a teenager. A big fan of Gene Kelly and Fred Astaire, her bookshelves held many volumes on film history. Friends, family and her many cousins here and across the pond will miss her laughter, storytelling and strong faith. May she rest in peace and dance with the angels, including Dave. 

A memorial mass will be held Saturday, March 7, at 11 a.m. at St. Joseph Basilica, 1109 Chestnut St. 

For more information, call Harry W. Greer, funeral director (FDR-745)

Ellen Dale Peterson passed away peacefully in her home on Jan. 1, 2020. Born Aug. 27, 1965, in Germany, she moved to the United States with her beautiful mother Isa Hille Peterson as a child. After attending San Diego State University, Ellen made the San Francisco Bay Area her home for most of her life. 

Ellen will be remembered for her beautiful smile, her kind and charitable nature, especially for all animals, her incredible talent in the kitchen, her overwhelming generosity and the love and loyalty she showed to everyone she knew. 

Ellen is preceded in death by her father, Paul Jose Peterson, born in Niagara Falls N.Y., and her mother, Isa Hille Peterson, born in Chemnitz, Germany. She is survived by her aunts, Ellen Hille and Uta Hille, aunt Colleen (David) Snyder, uncles Arnott (JoAnne) Peterson and Kerry (Tina) Peterson, all from New York and her extended family back east, her dear surrogate father Jim Price, her cherished dog Chico and her love and best friend, Art Hammond. 

Family and friends are invited to attend memorial services Friday, Jan. 17, at 11 a.m. at the Alameda Funeral and Cremation Services chapel, 1415 Oak St., Alameda.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in Ellen’s memory to Friends of the Alameda Animal Shelter (FAAS) or other animal rescue organization of your choice.

For more information, call Harry W. Greer, funeral director (FDR-745).  

 

 

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