Obituary of Sharon Tobiassen
Former Nevada City City Councilwoman Sharon Tobiassen died Sept. 18, 2017, at her Nevada City home, from complications of Type 1 Diabetes. She was 76. Sharon endured a life of tragedy, having lost all her immediate family in an 11-year span starting in 1990: her two children when they were 23 and 30, and her husband at age 66. Nevertheless, she remained active in the community as a public servant and volunteer.
A memorial service will begin at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 22 at the Elks Lodge, 518 State Highway 49 in Nevada City. She will be buried next to her family in the Pine Grove Cemetery. Born Sharon Kay Hollingshead on March 2, 1941, in Martinez, she was the oldest of two children born to Ralph and Doris Hollingshead. Her brother Richard Hollingshead preceded her in death in 1993.
She was a 1959 graduate of Nevada Union High School, and in recent years, led the allclass reunion. She attended Sierra College and Sacramento State. On July 25, 1964, she married David Tobiassen in Nevada City. Dave, also active in politics, served on the City Council, and was a member of the Nevada County Board of Supervisors when he died in 1995, the day after the couple’s 31st wedding anniversary. They had two children, Aleacha in 1966, and Kevin in 1971. Aleacha died in 1990 — three months after a heart-lung transplant — at age 23. A memorial scholarship at Nevada Union High School was established in her name. Kevin Tobiassen died in 2001, at 30, while waiting for a kidney transplant. Sharon served on the Nevada City City Council from 1996 to 2000, with a term as vice mayor. She was a member of the first graduating class at the Nevada County Leadership Institute, founded in 1996. Around that time, she worked for a decade as executive director of the Nevada County branch of Big Brothers Big Sisters. Other employment included work as a local real estate agent, and for the Nevada Joint Union High School District. She loved to sew, cook, knit and play bridge.
A constant community volunteer, Sharon served as chairwoman of Victorian Christmas for four years, worked on the Nevada City Classic Bicycle Race and Nevada City’s Bi-Centennial Celebration, and was a member of Soroptimist International and Order of the Eastern Star, among other organizations.
That community service earned her many awards, including two from the Nevada City Chamber of Commerce: the Elza Kilroy Award in 2000 and the President’s Appreciation Award in 1989. The Kilroy award, established in 1969, is presented annually to a citizen whose efforts help make Nevada City a better community. She received recognition for work on the 1991 Nevada County exhibit at the California State Fair. And, the Tobiassens were the first whole family to be inducted into Nevada County Fair’s Hall of Fame, in 2005. She is survived by numerous cousins who reside throughout California. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in Sharon’s name to American Diabetes Association, P.O. Box
15829, Arlington, VA 22215.
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