Farewell to those we lost in the last year

by The Record-Courier Staff

As we rush headlong into the new year, The Record-Courier invites readers to pause for a moment to reflect on the lives we lost in 2007.

From the many people who touched the hearts of Carson Valley residents, we limited ourselves to 20 names.

Our list ranges from Sallie Springmeyer, one of Nevada's first women attorneys, who died Dec. 23 at age 104, to 8-year-old Britt Mattinson who died Sept. 15 while playing flag football at the old Minden Elementary School.

The conflict in the Middle East took former Douglas High School students Sgt. Anthony Schober, 23, on May 12; and Chief Warrant Officer 2 Joshua Rodgers, 29, on May 30.

Marine Sgt. Phillip Allen Bocks, 28, based at the Marine Corps Mountain Warfare Training Center near Bridgeport, Calif., died Nov. 9.

Cancer claimed Justin Stegemann, 17, on March 29 in Avon, Ind., and 19-year-old James Lamb Jr., of the Gardnerville Ranchos, who died Sept. 13.

Both boys' heroic battles were chronicled in The Record-Courier.

The feelings of the families they left behind were summed up by Rodgers' widow Casey in a letter published Jan. 4 in the R-C.

"I don't even know where the year has gone," she said. "It seems like yesterday I was talking to Joshua on the phone and looking at his handsome face via the Internet. Within these conversations, he'd always make me laugh. He was extremely funny. He made all my days bright and full of excitement."

Those who died in 2007 included longtime school board member Connie Wennhold, 50, rancher and former school board member Arnold Settelmeyer, 67, and pioneer descendants Lois Sarman, 86, Melvin "Buzz" Frederick Springmeyer Sr., Franklin "Spec" Rahbeck, 85, and William Nelson, 95.

The March 23 death of Bud, the Douglas County Animal Shelter's three-legged "test kitty," touched the many fans who stopped by to visit the shelter fixture of 13 years. Bud's job was to judge if a dog was cat-aggressive before the animal was deemed adoptable.

Thanks to his fearless self-sacrifice, Bud contributed to the placement of many pets in Carson Valley homes.

This list, by no means, is complete. Thankfully, it's not up to us to judge whose passing is more important. We leave that to whom some people refer as a higher power.

We invite you to submit additional reminiscences and pictures to editor@recordcourier.com for publication on our Web site.


Readers who would like to remember other Douglas County residents who passed away in 2007 are invited to submit names, ages and brief biographies of their loved ones. Send to editor@recordcourier.com, or drop by The Record-Courier office, 1503 Highway 395, Suite G in Gardnerville. Please include your name and telephone number for verification.


See our Web site, www.recordcourier.com for a picture gallery and links to complete obituaries and stories on our list of 20.


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