Doralyn Poirier passed away at home with hospice care after suffering a fall on Jan. 22.
She was born in the Parkins family home in North Oakland. By great good fortune she was a neighbor to the Viennese immigrant refugee family of Felix Khuner who taught her to play the violin. She became a member of the Cal Berkeley Symphony at age 14 while still in Oakland Tech High School. Later she soloed with the Oakland Symphony. Later still, she played in the Honolulu Symphony. Chamber music became her passion which she performed for the rest of her life in groups such as Senza Ritmo and the Contra Costa Performing Artists Society as well as for private weddings and house concerts.
She was very active in the Alameda Clara Barton Society, which supported Alameda charities even running the fundraising for the once-huge, city-wide Dominos tournament for several years. At the Mastick Senior Center she taught MahJongg for more than 20 years. She was also an ardent member of Encinal Yacht Club where she supported yacht racing duties and social activities to the point of being designated an honorary member after 46 years of service.
Doralyn spent more than 10 years at Southern Pacific Railroad as the first female freight rate clerk. In Alameda she worked for the Alameda Times-Star newspaper and was a founding employee of the Alameda Journal. She was also a long-time voting precinct inspector.
During her husband’s retirement they traveled on a dozen ocean cruise ships and three river boats in Europe navigating the Seine, the Rhine and the Danube rivers.
She drove a 1995 BelAir Chevy off the show room floor back in 1955 and still owned it at her death.
She is survived by her husband Paul her sister Janice Habiger of Danville and sons Victor and Jason plus grandchildren and many nieces and nephews. Two babies Leyland and Gwendolyn predeceased her.
The family requests memorial donations be made to a favorite charity.
William Leroy Wilmoth passed away in Alameda April 28, 2019. He was the husband of the Late Ruby Wilmoth and father of Harry, Karen and the late Billy. He retired from the U.S. Navy.
A memorial service in his honor will take place Sunday, June 9, 10:30 a.m. with military honors on the USS Hornet at 707 West Hornet Ave.
Private interment will take place at Golden Gate National Cemetery, in San Bruno.
For more information contact Harry W. Greer, funeral director (FDR-745).
Geraldine Higby, 97, was born in Alameda on Sept. 3, 1921, to Lawrence and Ethel Aspinall. Her brothers were Herbert and Warren Aspinall. She attended Porter Elementary and Alameda High schools, earning a life membership in the Star and Key Honor Society.
She studied piano from age 6 and later added voice training. She was assistant organist and choir member at High Street Presbyterian and First Congregational churches in Alameda. She sang with Oakland Mother’s Singers, now known as The Distaff Singers.
Geraldine worked for the Oakland Unified School District, the City of Alameda Treasurer’s Office and was departmental secretary for the Planning Department.
Geraldine was a past matron and deputy grand matron of the Order of the Eastern Star, and a past worthy high priestess and supreme organist of the White Shrine of Jerusalem.
Geraldine was preceded in death by her husband Russell Higby, daughter Diane Rodriguez, grandson Scott Bertelsen, granddaughter Carolyn Malone-Baker, and great-grandson Timothy Jones.
She is survived by her daughter Ellen Bertelsen, son Paul Higby (Katy), daughter Barbara Acosta (Armand), 13 grandchildren, 35 great grandchildren, 15 great-great grandchildren, one triple-great grandchild and several nieces and nephews.
Geraldine passed away on May 15, 2019, in Waxhaw, N.C. A celebration of life will be held on Saturday, June 8, at 1 p.m., at First Presbyterian Church of Alameda, 2001 Santa Clara Ave., followed by interment in Chapel of the Chimes in Oakland.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, https://alz.org.