The Memorial Wall · Parkinson's Resource Organization

The Memorial Wall

Honoring Those Who Have Gone Before Us

The Parkinson’s Resource Organization Memorial Wall is dedicated as a tribute to those who lost their battle with Parkinson’s disease.

This special way of remembering the loved ones in our Parkinson's community arose from the requests of families and friends asking us to design a place for healing of those who were left behind.

The purpose of the Parkinson’s Resource Organization Memorial Wall is a virtual place to 

- hold the memory of someone who lived with Parkinson’s and/or their family members
- memorialize families who were touched by Parkinson’s
- maintain the memory of others who suffered from the same or similar conditions
- allow family and friends to grieve and heal from the loss of someone they now can only remember
- bring greater awareness of the passing of Parkinson's sufferers than can otherwise be accomplished through print publications
- acknowledge and appreciate those who have made a donation and posted sentiments in memory of someone’s loved one
- provide a place for the living to visit so they can gain solace and understanding around the battle of a loved one with Parkinson’s, or a similar disease
- establish a memorial event honoring the legacy of the decedent and family
- serve as a memorial when the family prefers donations in lieu of flowers or tributes at anniversaries or other significant dates.

If you wish to honor your loved one and share your memories in a public fashion or establish a memorial event, such as a golf tournament, tennis tournament, or special award presentation in the name of the family or decedent, please contact us at info@parkinsonsresource.org

 

Donations made to the Memorial Fund go towards funding Parkinson's Resource Organization activities globally.

Recent Memorial Wall Additions

Samuel Urcis

Samuel Urcis

September 7, 1934 - November 11, 2020

Samuel Urcis showed his science acumen at age ten, when he diagnosed his father’s friend’s flesh wound by viewing skin cells under a microscope.  In Cuba, where his Jewish father and mother had fled from the just turned Communist Soviet Union, Sam skipped several grades while his parents waited three decades to get a visa to the U.S.  

 

In 1951, a winning lottery ticket allowed the family to finally immigrate to California.  Then sixteen, Sam’s dreams of being a neurosurgeon were dashed, being unable to afford eight more years of school. But with a lifelong resilience, Sam quickly switched his focus to mechanical engineering, with its emphasis on math, accommodating his then limited English.  Washing test tubes at night at Children’s Hospital and doing a stint as a movie extra on weekends, Sam put himself through college, graduating from UCLA as editor of the Engineering School newspaper.  

 

The space program had just begun and Sam jumped right in, becoming a project manager just two weeks after beginning employment at Ryan Aerolab.  He oversaw an unmanned missile project built for NASA, the first launched from the Pacific Coast and containing the first living organisms ever sent so far into space by the United States.  Its success led to many other management posts, including at Hughes Aircraft and Rockwell International.  During these years Sam developed a taste for fine wine and good food, becoming quite knowledgeable about buying wine futures.  He always generously shared his bottles with friends

 

 In 1972, Sam conceived the idea of transferring some of the new space technology he was involved in to oil exploration. He co-founded Geosource, an oil services and equipment company, which became a Fortune 500 company eight years later.  Sam’s management style, to lead by example, was subtle but effective – when he wanted the other executives under him to curtail their high travel costs, he merely booked himself into a coach seat on a flight where they were flying first class.  He was seen by them and the result was exactly what he’d hoped for.  

 

Years of non-stop international travel negotiating deals and overseeing operations made Sam yearn for a quieter time and place.  When the CEO of  Geosource, Patrick Loughnane, died and Sam was asked to step into his shoes, he opted instead to leave the industry and retire to Carmel, California, where he’d honeymooned with his first wife.  There, Sam became friends with Wally Davis, one of the founders of Silicon Valley.  Together, they formed a new venture capital firm.

 

Alpha Partners began in 1982 with two other executives joining them shortly thereafter.  The focus of the firm was seed financing for start-up companies.  Alpha Partners eventually provided seed and later-stage financing for more than 45 technology companies.  During several years in venture capital, Sam also served as a trustee of the Monterey Institute of International Studies.  

 

After all the general partners retired from Alpha, Sam partnered with Castle Harlan, Inc., an original investor in Geosource, to consult in the energy sector.  Despite all these accomplishments, Sam is remembered mostly for his sweet nature and humble disposition.  His thoughtfulness and generosity touched everyone in his life.  “He never said a bad word about anyone” his good friend Ben remembers.  Eventually, Sam retired, enjoying a life of travel, the arts and philanthropy with his second wife, Marion Zola, a writer. They split their time between Carmel and Beverly Hills, where Sam died from Parkinson’s’ at home November 11th with his wife and dog by his side.  He is survived by his brother, Ruben, his two sisters, Julie and Berta, and numerous nephews and nieces.  

Remembering Samuel Urcis

Thank you for your memorial contribution and for completing this form. The information you provide enables us to apply your remembrance gift exactly as you wish.

Josephine 'Jo' Crack

Josephine 'Jo' Crack

December 31, 1969 - October 11, 2020

Josephine Crack, better known as ‘Jo’ was born in 1935 into a hard-working and highly respected family of grocers in the village of Lound, near Lowestoft. She had an older sister, Rosalie, who was disabled, and her life was centred at home and the small village school where she thrived.

Following her early education Jo went on to the grammar school in Lowestoft and it was a visit from the school’s headmaster which persuaded her parents that Jo had the potential to go to university. Jo headed to University College London where she studied German and earned her degree and certificate in education. She went on to spend a year in Germany and when she returned to England her first teaching post was in Rochester, Kent.

Then, in 1965, Jo moved to Maidenhead and started work at Maidenhead High School, now known as Newlands Girls’ School, as a German teacher. Jo stayed at the school for 27 years, seeing its gradual conversion to comprehensive schooling and its change of name to Newlands School in 1973. During this time she became deputy head, a post she later shared with joint deputy head Janet Longstaff. Janet said: “She was lovely to work with, really supportive, sympathetic, she was great.”

According to Janet, Jo was also an excellent teacher, producing ‘very successful’ exam results, as well as being principled. “She always claimed to be firm and fair, but she was always great fun and very sociable,” said Janet.

“She taught my sister an awfully long time ago, but when I told my sister she’d died, she said ‘Jo’s lessons were such fun’, she said ‘we would all end up giggling and Jo would be giggling too’.

Jo and Janet became good friends, and Celia Phillips, a fellow teacher, was another very good friend Jo met at school, the pair going on to share a flat and then a house together. Throughout her life Jo cherished friendships, and kept in touch with school friends, family friends, foreign friends, village friends and colleagues.

She also loved music and literature, and enjoyed sport, from playing hockey at school, to badminton in her thirties and short tennis following her retirement in 1990. As a spectator, eventing and horse riding came first for Jo, followed by football, golf and snooker. Although she liked to travel and explore different countries, in her retirement Jo was happy with spontaneous days out and short breaks in England.

Jo had Parkinson’s and moved to Boulters Lock Residential Care Home in Sheephouse Road in 2015.

She died at the home on Sunday, October 11.

 

Remembering Josephine 'Jo' Crack

Thank you for your memorial contribution and for completing this form. The information you provide enables us to apply your remembrance gift exactly as you wish.

Salvatore "Sal" Ronci

Salvatore "Sal" Ronci

January 19, 1937 - November 9, 2020

Salvatore “Sal” Ronci, a musician and educator beloved to family, friends, students, and audiences in the Miami and Daytona Beach areas died November 9, 2020, of complications from COVID-19 and Parkinson’s Disease. He was 83. Born Salvatore Ronciglione in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, January 19, 1937, to Italian immigrant Giuseppe Ronciglione (Joseph Ronci) and first-generation Italian-American Rose Aveni. Infant Sal moved with his family to New Haven, Connecticut, after his family home burned in a fire. He attended Ezekiel Cheever Grammar School and Wilbur Cross High School, where he discovered a gift and love for music, later studying trumpet with Boston Symphony Orchestra great, Armando Ghitalla while attending the prestigious Hartt School of Music in Hartford, Connecticut. His family moved to Florida in 1956, Sal transferring to the University of Miami in Coral Gables where he performed, arranged, recorded, and toured with The Coralairs, a five-man vocal group primarily of fellow UM students. The group enjoyed a local top-10 hit with “A Lover is A Fool,” introduced the now-classic Christmas song “Buona Natale” to a national audience, and headlined Havana’s Sans Souci nightclub on the eve of the Cuban revolution before disbanding in 1959. Sal later returned to UM to complete bachelor’s and master’s degrees in music education.

While at UM, Sal met Judith “Judy” Cantor. The two married in 1958, settled in Miami, reared three children and launched successful careers as public-school teachers, Sal continuing to book gigs as a trumpet and electric-bass player, singer, and bandleader. As a licensed realtor he worked hard to help secure a comfortable retirement for himself and Judy. After 30 years as one of the Miami-Dade school district’s top music teachers (with notable stints at Kinloch Park Jr. High, Palmetto Sr. High, and Glades Middle, among other schools), Sal retired with Judy to Ormond Beach, Florida, where his parents and sisters lived and where he launched a successful second act as leader of the Sal Ronci Big Band, known for its popular series of performances at the Daytona Beach Bandshell. Sal was especially proud to share his love of jazz through “The Story of Jazz,” a live in-school education program he created and presented for students of Volusia County Public Schools.

In addition to Judy, his wife of 62 years, Sal’s survivors include daughter Julie Sipes (Ken) and son Michael Ronci of Ormond Beach and son Jeff Ronci (Juan Bosco Talavera) of Miami; sisters Loretta Tuttle Santiago (Efrain) of Edgewater, Florida, and Marie Richardson (Ross) of Daytona Beach; Uncle Carlyle Aveni of New Haven, Connecticut; Aunt Anna Ronciglione Durkin of Philadelphia; nearly two dozen nieces and nephews; loving cousins; friends and fellow musicians; and countless students and audiences he inspired and entertained through the years. Services are postponed until the novel coronavirus pandemic is under control. 

Remembering Salvatore "Sal" Ronci

Thank you for your memorial contribution and for completing this form. The information you provide enables us to apply your remembrance gift exactly as you wish.

David Spencer Quall

David Spencer Quall

January 26, 1936 - November 12, 2020

Born in Bellingham, David Spencer Quall, 84, died peacefully after a five-year battle with Parkinson's disease. He was at home in Mount Vernon as his daughters were reading Psalm 23.

Dave graduated from Seattle Pacific University in 1961, which led to 38 years of teaching and counseling. At Mount Vernon High School, he was head coach of Boys' Basketball for 12 years and later led Skagit Valley College Men's Basketball to two championships in the 1980s. He was a State Representative for the 40th district from 1993-2011.

Dave and Allene (Stave) were married on August 29, 1958. Dave, known as "Papa" to his children and grandchildren, is survived by his wife, Allene, of Mount Vernon; two daughters, Kim (Dan) Brown of Sedro Woolley and Kay Quall of Mount Vernon; six grandchildren, Rodger (Hannah) Brown, Marshall (Carey) Brown, Ethan (Carrie) Brown, Miriam Witt, Mary Witt, and Miles Witt; seven great-grandchildren, all with the last name of Brown: Zella, Noah, Calvin, Larry, Alice, Juniper, and Benji; sister Rachel Prigg of Snohomish and brother Dean (Liz) Quall of Seattle; brother-in-law Dave (Alberta) Stave of Gig Harbor, sister-in-law Joyce Stave of Spanaway, and numerous beloved nieces and nephews.

He is preceded in death by his parents, Reverend Arnt and Clara Quall; nine siblings, Velnora McAfee, Alvin Quall, Elda Bettencourt, Florence Tunks, John Quall, Philip Quall, Miriam Baker, Clara Eardley, Joe Quall; and brother-in-law, Doug Stave.

There will be a celebration of life at Mount Vernon Cemetery next Memorial Day weekend. 

Remembering David Spencer Quall

Thank you for your memorial contribution and for completing this form. The information you provide enables us to apply your remembrance gift exactly as you wish.

Dr. Richard (Dick) B. Stein

Dr. Richard (Dick) B. Stein

- November 3, 2020

A life well lived.


Dr. Richard (Dick) B. Stein. Dick is remembered by friends, family, and colleagues as a decent man who treated everyone with respect, fairness, and kindness. He attended MIT and Oxford University both on full scholarship. In 1968 he moved to Edmonton with his wife Sue and young children Ellie and Eric. Once there, Dick helped build the department of physiology at the University of Alberta. He was a professor at U of A for 50 years before retiring in June 2018. Papers from his final projects on Parkinson's Disease are still winding their way to publication.

Dick was proud of his mentorship of generations of neuroscientists. Dick had the vision that multidisciplinary research was needed to answer difficult questions. He co-founded the Neuroscience group now the Neuroscience and Mental Health Institute at the University of Alberta which supports over 150 researchers. His research and inventions have helped thousands with neurologic and mobility challenges.

Dick was also proud of his family. Losing his own parents at age 16, he threw himself into parenting and his family doing fun activities every weekend. As well, he enjoyed ballroom dancing with Sue and wildflower photography. He jogged, rode, or walked to work almost every day of his career. He enjoyed cross country skiing and introduced it to many of the foreign students working with him. Dick and Sue traveled to almost 100 countries and Dick said recently that he had had a good and interesting life.

During the past 2 years, Dick has been limited by Parkinson's Disease and associated conditions. As a resident of the Edmonton General Continuing Care Centre, he has received love and care from the staff on 5AB. They have become our extended family and we thank them for their kindness and devotion. During COVID they have gone over and above risking their own safety to keep our family connected.

An amazing group of former students worked as a team to support Dick and the family over the past 2 ½ years. They enabled Dick to keep walking including outside walks and brought him homemade gluten-free cookies. They helped Sue and Dick create a ballroom dance routine which was presented at the Edmonton General in March 2019. You can watch this inspiring performance at www.thevitalbeat.ca/news/couples-dance-performance-captures-lifetime-love/

The "Dream Team" as we call them have supported our family until Dick's last day and beyond. Thank you to Dirk Everaert, Su Ling Chong, Jaynie Yang, Jacques Bobet, and Kelvin Jones.

When COVID entered the Edmonton General, Dick was isolated from friends and family for 3 months. We wondered if he would survive. But he did survive, never complaining. He relished his phone as a connection to the outside world. The lockdown lifted on July 23 and we had three months together again taking Dick outside for visits. When COVID again hit the EGCCC, Dick became ill within days and tested positive for COVID. He fought for several days longer than expected but succumbed on Tuesday, November 3, 2020.

We look forward to having a ceremony to celebrate his life sometime in the future and will announce closer to the time.

Thinking of others until the end, Dick's wish in recent years was to create a bursary to support future neuroscientists. Donations may be made to the "University of Alberta" noting your donation is made in memory of Dr. Richard Stein to support the Richard B Stein Neuroscience Graduate Student Fund.

Remembering Dr. Richard (Dick) B. Stein

Thank you for your memorial contribution and for completing this form. The information you provide enables us to apply your remembrance gift exactly as you wish.

Coming Soon

Contact Us

Physical Address
Parkinson's Resource Organization
74090 El Paseo #104
Palm Desert, CA 92260

Local Phone
(760) 773-5628

Toll-Free Phone
(877) 775-4111

General Information
info@parkinsonsresource.org

 

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Updated: August 16, 2017