Walter Maya died from lung cancer at his home in Claremont December 16, 2018. He was surrounded by family, had been on hospice care and was 89 years old.
Walter was born in New York City on October 25, 1929, and liked to say that his birth triggered the stock market crash. His father, Walter Maya Sr., was a talented graphic artist from Brazil, and his mother, Yetta Kaplan, was a college graduate and first-generation immigrant from the Ukraine.
Claremont resident Kevin Dean Kearney died December 19 at the age of 55.
The son of James Dean and Joyce Inez Kearney, he was born at Pomona Valley Hospital the morning of August 14, 1963. The first year of his life he lived in a cabin at the trout ponds of Mt. Baldy Village. Space was limited there, so he moved with his family to Foreman Street in Upland, where he lived until he was nine years old. He attended Valencia Elementary School until April of 1973, when he moved with his family to Claremont and transferred to Vista del Valle Elementary.
Longtime Claremont resident Theresa B. Kolodge, 97, died at her daughter Ann Marie’s home on Christmas Day.
She was born Theresa Barbara Price to a large Polish-American family on April 14, 1921 in Cloquet, Minnesota and was the last surviving sibling of 11 children.
Theresa (“Terry”) moved to Claremont with her husband, Edmund, and their five children in 1966, when she was 45. She lived here until 2005, when she moved in with her daughter’s family in Dana Point, California, following her husband’s death the year before.
Pastor, counselor, passionate advocate for Civil Rights, LGBTQ, women’s causes
Ralph Click died peacefully on September 22, 2018 in his home at Woods Health Services in La Verne. He was 89.
The eldest of three children to Agnes (Deal) and Ernest Click, he was born into a Brethren family in Wenatchee, Washington. Agnes and Ernest owned and worked an apple orchard in Wenatchee. Ralph’s aunts and uncles traveled from their home in Rock Lake, North Dakota, to work with him on the family orchard.
Claremonters take a huge interest in the people we lost, and many graced the COURIER's obituary pages in 2018. This list represents the people who helped make Claremont the wonderful city we all enjoyed in 2018.
Tireless legal advocate, gifted athlete, grandfather
Claremont native Stephen Ewing Ronfeldt, 76, died December 1 in Berkeley, California after a long battle with cancer.
Steve was born October 28, 1942 in Pomona to Louis and Emily (Lyon) Ronfeldt. He was raised in Claremont, attending Webb School then Claremont High School (class of 1960), where he excelled in tennis and basketball. He was student body president of Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington, where he met Suzy, who would become his wife of 53 years.
“It is with great sadness we announce that Muriel Faith O’Brien died—her word exactly—November 6, 2018 at the age of 96 to join her husband, Judge Edmond O’Brien and her parents in the next adventure of their lives,” Ms. O’Brien’s friends shared. “Muriel will be remembered for her spirit, commitment and involvement specifically within the communities of La Verne and Claremont among others.”
Teacher, traveler, artist, gardener, champion of Claremont’s international students
Louise W. Bell died peacefully, surrounded by her family, on August 16, 2018.
Louise, who deeply appreciated the global community and its international culture, arts and people, was born in Turkey in 1929. Her parents worked for the American Board Service Committee. By the time she was five, she, her parents and two siblings had crossed the Atlantic Ocean three times by ship.