Kevin Sharp’s battle with cancer helped launch his rise to country music stardom and helped him inspire those who heard him speak.

Tom Myers, a Sacramento photographer whose vivid images of animals, places and people in California and the West have appeared in national magazines, books and on greeting cards, died April 7 of cancer, his family said. He was 88.

Jon Herr, a small-business owner who made a big difference in many lives as a foster parent for more than 120 children, died April 6 of lung cancer, his family said. He was 60.

William “Bill” Behnk, a pioneering computer expert who helped develop and implement information technology systems for the California Legislature, died April 8 with prostate cancer, his family said. He was 87.

Sister Mary Eileen Brannigan, a talented musician who played several instruments, expertly led religious and secular choirs, and taught generations of Northern California schoolchildren, has died at 91.

John A. Jungerman, a pioneering UC Davis physics professor who worked on the top-secret team that developed the atomic bomb in World War II and witnessed the dramatic first test explosion, died March 28. He was 92.

Robert “Bob” Fowler, an expert on fruit trees who co-owned his family’s Newcastle nursery, died April 1 after a lengthy illness.

James H. Smith, a former Sacramento Bee general manager who was an executive at newspapers around the country, died March 31 at 91, his family said.

John S. Perez, a former Isleton mayor and businessman who was a leader in efforts to revitalize the sleepy Delta town, died Friday after a stroke, his family said. He was 85.

Elvie C. Watts, a teacher and administrator who drew on lessons from her childhood in the segregated South as a prominent leader in preschool education in Sacramento, died March 29. She was 97.

Otis Turner, a former KCRA reporter and anchor who founded a Fair Oaks newspaper, died March 26 of lung cancer, his family said. He was 69.

Doris C. Pike, a homemaker who embarked on a diligent search for her family history and helped establish the first public genealogy library in Sacramento County, died March 24 of colon cancer complications, her family said. She was 95.

James O. Jeffers Sr., a prominent athlete who became a popular teacher and coach with important life lessons after a car crash left him paralyzed from the neck down, died March 22 after a recent illness, his family said. He was 82.

Margie A. Younger, a lively retiree who acted in local theater, wrote a Placer County newspaper column and appeared in Chia Pet ads on national TV, died March 19 after a brief illness, her family said. She was 92.

Ella J. Lively, a World War II veteran, community volunteer and fearless activist who devoted herself to peace and justice issues from civil rights to the war in Iraq, died March 5, her family said. She was 90.

Virginia L. Young, an influential advocate for mental health care in Sacramento and who preached as a child with famed evangelist Aimee Semple McPherson, died Thursday at 94, her family said.

Shirley Fahn, matriarch of a prominent family in the Sacramento business and Jewish communities, died Monday of a stroke, her family said. She was 87.

Dr. Franklin J. Chinn Sr., who cared for generations of Sacramento residents while raising an accomplished family of medical and educational professionals, died March 10 after a brief illness, his family said. He was 88.

JoEllen “Joey” Franklin, a writer who profiled the butcher, the baker, the candlestick maker and many other local merchants as a business columnist for The Sacramento Bee’s Neighbors section, died March 14 of Alzheimer’s disease, her family said. She was 83.

E.J. Dolner, an old-school car guy who was a top auto racer, owner and mechanic for more than seven decades, died March 10 of a stroke, his family said. He was 88.

Irene P. Ramseth, a resourceful homemaker who earned patents on clever household inventions, died March 2 at 95, her family said.

Edith-Adele Bellmer, who grew up with strong ties to Sacramento history in her family’s grand Heilbron House mansion, died Feb. 22 at 95, her family said.

William Hauck, a prominent figure at the state Capitol for decades and a longtime California State University trustee, died Friday after an eight-month battle with brain cancer, friend Rick Brandsma said. He was 73.

Evelyn W. Michell, a woman of many talents who found reward as a homemaker, community agency worker, artist and traveler, died Feb. 22 of surgery complications, her family said. She was 88.

Rosmarie Blood, a professional dog breeder and judge who was president of the Sacramento Kennel Club, died Feb. 21 of congestive heart failure, her family said. She was 89.

The Rev. Richard A. Evers, a visionary pastor who took his ministry outdoors as the founder of a Sacramento drive-in church, died March 2 of health complications related to a fall, his family said. He was 82.

The Smithsonian Channel is rebroadcasting a documentary about Korean War hero Maj. Kurt Chew-Een Lee, who grew up in Sacramento to be the first Asian-American officer in the Marine Corps.

Maj. Kurt Chew-Een Lee, who grew up in Sacramento to become the first Asian American officer in the U.S. Marine Corps and a decorated Korean War hero, has died at 88.

Eugene Peter Barone, a Sacramento bakery driver who fought in some of the bloodiest battles in Europe during World War II, died Feb. 11 at 93.

A funeral Mass for CalPERS official Joseph A. Dear is set for 11 a.m. Tuesday at Holy Spirit Church, 3159 Land Park Drive, Sacramento.

Dr. Turan Gonen, a leading expert and popular professor of electrical engineering at California State University, Sacramento, died Feb. 24 of a stroke, his family said. He was 72.

Joseph Dear, overseer of $283 billion portfolio, dies after bout with prostate cancer.

Janet R. Baker, a veteran Sacramento parks official who struggled with deep budget cuts that reduced services in the popular American River Parkway and at other recreation sites, died of cancer Feb. 19 in Oregon, her family said. She was 64.

When doctors diagnosed Kourtney Lampedecchio with a rare and aggressive form of breast cancer in her late 20s, the young woman from Placerville knew her life would be cut short.

John C. Worsley Sr., a former California state architect who led efforts to restore the state Capitol to its historic grandeur, died Feb. 20 of pneumonia complications, his family said. He was 94.

Tom Sullivan, a dedicated public servant who advocated for treatment services as mental health director for El Dorado and Sacramento counties, died Feb. 7 after a recent stroke, his family said. He was 71.

Jon Bruscia, a businessman with a sharp eye for collectibles who ran a popular antiques store in Old Sacramento for 40 years, died Feb. 2 of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig’s disease, his family said. He was 66.

Ted Leung, a retired grocer who stayed young at heart delivering meals to seniors for more than 30 years, died Feb. 11 of congestive heart failure, his family said. He was 95.

Terry Cochran, a business executive and veteran trustee of the Los Rios Community College District, died Friday of complications from sinus cancer, his family said. He was 74.

Betty Simonsma, a model of traditional family values who championed unpopular views about religion in society as a leading Sacramento atheist, died Feb. 7 after several months of hospice care for health problems, her family said. She was 88.

Sandy Guzzardo, who was prominent in golfing as a top LPGA instructor, died Feb. 4 of cancer, friends said. She was 70.

Pedro E. “Pete” Montalvo, a Sacramento bowling fan who promoted the sport among Mexican Americans as a social activity that grew into an international competition, died Feb. 3 with liver and pancreatic cancer, his family said. He was 75.

Orville L. Abbott, an influential California water official and World War II aviator who survived a harrowing crash in the Pacific Ocean, died Jan. 23 of complications from Alzheimer’s disease, his family said. He was 91.

Farris N. Salamy, a former Sacramento County public defender who represented some of the capital’s most notorious killers, died Feb. 2 of leukemia, his family said. He was 84.

Greg Hatfield, a community activist who had a strong understanding of how local government works as a former manager at Sacramento City Hall, died Jan. 29 at 65.

Dr. Richard M. Ikeda, a Sacramento physician who was committed to providing medical care for disadvantaged people as the founder of a community-based health organization, died Jan. 24 of cancer, his family said. He was 81.

John A. Tosney, a prominent and prolific Northern California bankruptcy lawyer, died Jan. 11 of a heart attack while vacationing in Costa Rica, his family said. He was 62.

Joe Mott, a Wilton firefighter and Korean War veteran who returned to active duty 40 years later in the Gulf War, died Tuesday of cancer, his family said. He was 82.

Dagmar Thompson, an artist whose upbringing in a well-known Sacramento political family informed her talent as an illustrator and graphic designer for California Journal magazine, died Wednesday of lung cancer, friends said. She was 67.

Jim Bickford, an innovative Northern California cattleman who sold his family’s Placer County ranch for development, died Jan. 17 at 96, his family said.

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