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Palo Alto Weekly

Community Pulse - April 20, 2012

Deaths

Lee Domenik

A memorial service is pending for Lee Domenik, a 2007 graduate of Palo Alto High School, who died April 9 in Cambodia, where he had been working as an English teacher. He was 23.

Born in Santa Cruz, he moved as a small child with his family to Japan. He began his schooling when the family moved to Singapore, and continued in Highland Park, Texas.

After the family moved to Palo Alto, he finished elementary school at Addison and went on to Jordan Middle School and Palo Alto High School, where he worked on the school newspaper, The Campanile. He also loved to play tennis, his father said.

He started college at Duke University, later transferring to the University of San Francisco, where he was studying chemistry but was taking some time off, his father said. He was an enthusiastic sailor and had sailed with his family in the Mediterranean, Caribbean and south Pacific. On a family trip to Vietnam and Cambodia, he visited a dam project in a remote area of Vietnam and became interested in the impact of such projects on local populations. He intended to return to make a documentary film about dams in Laos, but instead decided to stay in Phnom Penh, where he got a job teaching English and volunteering in an orphanage.

He is survived by his parents, Steve and Christine Domenik of Aptos, Calif.; his brother, Jack, of San Francisco, Calif.; his grandparents, Barbara Domenik of Davis, Calif., and Peter and Athena Rockas of Fresno, Calif.; and many aunts, uncles and cousins.

Robert Doland Scoren

Robert Donald Scoren, a Woodside resident for nearly 50 years, died March 22.

A native of Windsor, Ontario, Canada, he completed his studies in dentistry at the College of Physicians and Surgeons in San Francisco in 1956 and established his dental practice on Welch Road in Palo Alto, next to Stanford Hospital. He later completed graduate studies in Periodontics at the University of Pennsylvania and Boston University.

His 32-year professional career serving the Palo Alto community as a periodontist included teaching at Stanford University and conducting research at UC San Francisco.

He had many friends in the world of art and architecture, whose work he admired, especially the innovative work of Charles and Ray Eames, designer Alexander Girard and San Francisco architect Don Knorr. His patient list included these friends and others who became prominent names such as Robert Noyce, founder of Intel, Lucille Packard, sponsor of the children's hospital, and painter Georgia O'Keefe, who flew in from New Mexico to see him.

He loved exploring the world's cultures and appreciated fine craftsmanship. He designed and curated a major exhibition of his collection of antique toys at the Craft and Folk Art Museum in Los Angeles in 1981, assisted by his daughter Leslie and San Francisco calligraphy artist Alan Blackman.

All forms of creative expression captivated Robert and he enjoyed sharing this in the folk art decor of his professional office, designing the interior of his daughter Holly's veterinary office, and in the custom features of his Woodside home.

His keen interest in cutting-edge technology brought dedicated involvement in the semiconductor world as an investor and supporter in his retirement years. He dearly loved the Peninsula area and was proud to have served the community during the exciting era of the rise of Silicon Valley.

His other passions were playing tennis, jazz music, enjoying his family and his Airedale Boomer.

He is survived by his wife, Lisa of Woodside, Calif.; daughter, Leslie Scoren of Mountain View, Calif.; daughter, Holly Scoren Miller of Topanga, Calif.; his first wife, Rita Joanne Scoren of Mountain View; and four grandchildren.

The family plans to have a celebration of his life at his Woodside home for family and friends in May.

Sanford Keller

Sanford "Sandy" Keller, the son of Jewish immigrants, died April 14.

As a lawyer he helped prisoners and other clients who could not pay him. His toughest fight lasted 12 years and took him from the parole board to regulatory panels and all the way to the federal courts. It ended on Dec. 4, 1989, when the federal court of appeals overturned the conviction of his client Francisco Perez, who had been wrongfully convicted in 1977 on charges of armed robbery.

He was born on May 4, 1941, in Palo Alto. He attended Cubberley High School in Palo Alto and graduated from USC and Santa Clara Law School.

In 1970, he went to work for a federally financed legal services agency in a basement storefront in downtown San Francisco. Three years later, he joined the Legal Aid Society to represent indigent clients in the Bay Area. He first worked on criminal cases and then on appeals for the society. In 1983, he started a private practice, mainly taking clients who could not afford to pay him much, if anything. He retired from full-time law practice in 2001.

He is survived by his wife; their daughter, Kimberly Osborne; two sons, Kyle of Seattle, Wash., and Matthew of New York City, N.Y.; a sister, Caroline Lehman of San Jose, Calif.; and a granddaughter.

Bonnie M. Stafford

Bonnie M. Stafford of Woodside, Calif. — daughter, wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and aunt — died April 10.

She and her twin brother Stuart were born in San Francisco on Feb.10, 1924, and graduated from Lowell High School class of 1942.

She was active in several local organizations, including Woodside Landscaping Committee, Woodside/Atherton Garden Club, Cantor Arts, and was a volunteer at Sequoia Hospital. She played tennis, gardened and kept many friends.

Her husband Jack C. Stafford, a landscape architect, preceded her in death in January 1998. Her twin brother, Stuart, preceded her in death in November 1996.

She is survived by her son, Jeff of Ashland, Ore.; daughter and son-in-law, Abby and Peter Bentley of Grass Valley, Calif.; grandson, Cedar of Ashland, Ore.; granddaughters, Amra Stafford of Phoenix, Ariz., and Senna North of Medford, Ore.; niece and husband, Libby McPherson-Mann and Bob Mann, of Woodside, Calif.; niece, Saundra McPherson of San Francisco; great-nephew, Griffin; and numerous other nieces and nephews in addition to many loving friends.

The family prefers donations to the American Cancer Society or Pathways Hospice.

Private services will be held for the family. A celebration of her life for close friends and family will be held later this year.

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