Laura Frances (Beck) Whitacre – Featured obituary
Born in Chico, CA on May 23, 1960, she was the first daughter of Grace and Edward Beck of Grass Valley, CA. She attended Grass Valley’s Hennessy Elementary and Lyman Gilmore Middle School, and graduated from Nevada Union High School in 1978. She received an A.S. from Sierra College in 1980 and went on to earn a B.S. in Biology from the University of California, Santa Barbara in 1983. Following Laura’s nuclear medicine licensing from the Cancer Center of Santa Barbara in 1984, she worked at the Veterans Hospital and Scripps Hospital in La Jolla, CA for 10 years.
After meeting at Sierra College and enjoying a long romance, Laura and William Wayne Whitacre were married on November 3, 1984 in San Diego, CA. Bill and Laura gave birth to two beautiful daughters: Lindsay Elise (born in 1989) and Jennifer Nicole (born in 1991).
Always passionate about clothing design, Laura became a self-taught expert designer and seamstress who was known for her unique trendsetting rhinestone and crystal designs which accented clothes, towels, backpacks, cell phones, shoes, quilts, and toys. Her wide range of design creations included numerous costumes for the San Diego Dance Centre, class plays, and Halloween, as well as prom and wedding party dresses. She designed and sewed cheerleading uniforms for the Champion Outlaws Cheerleading Team for four years. She also designed cheerleading and dance clothing for Valhalla High School in 2005 and
2006. The May 17-19, 2006 Valhalla High School Spring Dance Production was dedicated to Laura Whitacre, as she was an integral part of the program for three years.
Laura was an avid volunteer at Vista Grande Elementary School as an aide, photographer, and yearbook creator. She also volunteered with the San Diego Dance Centre when her daughters trained there. Laura was a loving influence for all the girls in dance and cheerleading. She was a compassionate, kind person and brave spirit.
Laura enjoyed traveling in the family recreational vehicle with her husband to watch
her daughters and their friends compete in competition cheerleading events. The family traveled to Florida five times to watch their girls compete in National Cheerleading Competitions. Another family interest was boating on the Colorado River. The family loved taking their motor home to the beach with their friends to enjoy the sounds of the surf on Coronado Island. Their vacation destinations of Hawaii, Palm Desert, Utah and Arizona provided memories of fun and laughter with friends and family.
Laura was preceded in death by her grandmother Gwen Anderson, grandfather Harold Anderson, and grandparents Rose and Henry Beck. She is survived by her husband Bill of 21 years; daughters Lindsay and Jen; mother and stepfather Grace and Ken Dolan of Grass Valley, CA; father and stepmother Edward and Sue Beck of Grass Valley, CA; brother Reid Beck of Santa Barbara, CA; sister and brother-in-law Connie and Rick Hanle of Rocklin, CA; and father-in-law and mother-in-law Roger and Bette Whitacre of El Cajon, CA. She is also survived by brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law Don and Vicki Whitacre of El Cajon, CA; Cathy and Mike Hensler of Tehachapi, CA; John and Michelle Whitacre of Atascadero, CA; Nance Whitacre of San Diego, CA; and Michael Whitacre of Bakersfield, CA. Also, Laura is survived by 12 nieces and nephews and a multitude of friends and admirers.
Services will be held Friday, May 26, 2006 at Shadow Mountain Community Church; 2100 Greenfield Dr., El Cajon, CA at 1:00 p.m. Memorial donations may be made for Colorectal Research to the American Cancer Society, 800-227-2345, http://www.cancer.org. Light a Lumiaria for Laura at the American Cancer Society Relay for Life on June 3 at the Nevada County Fairgrounds.
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A small fire that broke out just after 10 a.m. Tuesday off Highway 49 was quickly contained by firefighters, authorities said.