Charles & Teri Palmer

Special Recog

Charles and Teri Palmer are being inducted into the Manteca, Lathrop, and French Camp Hall of Fame for 2019 in the area of Special Recognition. The Palmers have an abiding, deep personal commitment to military and government service. Charles is a Vietnam War era veteran and they have both worked for over 10 years at Sharpe Army Depot in Lathrop. Both Charles and Teri are described as making a difference in the lives of our military troops, their families, veterans, and the entire Manteca community. They inspire others and reinforce Manteca’s reputation as a patriotic community. Charles Palmer moved to Manteca in 1979. He graduated high school and attended Sacramento City College in 1970. Charles was in the US Army active duty from 1972 to 1974 and four additional years inactive duty. He worked in various private sector positions, caregiving, teaching, and supervising. Teri Palmer grew up in a Military family in which she attended high school in Nebraska and Frankfurt Germany. Teri also attended two years of college in the University of Maryland in Munich Germany. She worked for Hospice, Real Estate and at Sharpe Army Depot. On May 5, 2007, the Palmers oldest son, Charles O. Palmer II age 36, was killed in action while serving in the Marine Corps, the only casualty in the Iraq War from Manteca. Life for the Palmers changed forever. At the time of Charles II death, the husband of Palmers’ daughter Jeni was in the military along with their youngest son Jason. Both Jeni and Jason suggested to Charles and Teri an idea they felt would help the family cope and heal, as well as convey support to active duty military stationed overseas. The family begun holding informal gatherings in their backyard with family and friends to pack personal care items to ship to Jeni’s husband and those deployed with him. From that grew an ever increasing interest and participation by others from all over which led to the formal organized troop pack events for Memorial Troop Support Program MTSP in 2015. Boxes are shipped throughout the world to meet MTSP’s mission “to raise awareness of the general public of the sacrifices and the dedication of troops of all branches of the United States Military by supporting active duty service members and their families, Veterans and their families, and families that have lost someone in combat.” The Palmers are long time members of the Place of Refuge Church in Manteca. Pastor Dave Bliss describes the Palmers as “inspiring” and admires how they have turned a deep personal loss into becoming incredible witnesses of life and examples of how to infuse life and of putting needs of others above self. Congratulations Charles and Teri on this special induction into the Manteca, Lathrop, French Camp Hall of Fame. Their impact and appreciation of others has been tremendous.


Dr. Benjamin Edward Taylor, MD


Benjamin Edward Taylor, M. D., our Health Care inductee, is remembered as a talented and compassionate physician as well as an avid gardener, poet, artist, writer and linguist. Dr. Taylor was born March 18, 1920, in Conway, Arkansas. He graduated from Bigelow High school in Arkansas and attended Arkansas State Teachers College in Conway, Arkansas. Dr. Taylor met his wife Sibyl Elizabeth Bostick in 1940. Dr. Taylor was a member of the NYA student program and National Guard. Dr. Taylor’s National Guard unit was mobilized after Pearl Harbor was bombed in December of 1941. He and his wife traveled together all over the United States from duty station to duty station while Dr. Taylor trained with the Army Air Corps until he was stationed overseas in the Aleutian Islands, then in England where he was a radio operator during D-Day and finally traveling across Europe as it was liberated from the Nazis. Dr. Taylor attended medical school at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences from 1950 to 1954 where he earned his Bachelors of Science in Medicine and a Doctor of Medicine Degree. Dr. Taylor served his Internship at San Joaquin General Hospital in Stockton and his Residency at Mercy Hospital in Merced, California. Dr. Taylor established his private practice in Manteca, California in 1956 where he took over the long time practice of Dr. Galt on Lincoln Avenue. Dr. Taylor had the help of his loving wife Sibyl to manage the practice, assist in medical procedures and be his biggest champion. Dr. Taylor practiced as a General Practitioner and General Surgeon until 2011. Dr. Taylor was a long time staff member of St. Joseph’s Hospital and Dameron Hospital in Stockton. He was a member of the Ripon Church of Christ. Dr. Taylor never knew a stranger, his southern manners always shining through along with his southern accent of which he was extremely proud. He acknowledged everyone’s worth and humanity whether it be to assist a patient, their family or his many friends and colleagues. Dr. Taylor was married for 68 years to his loving wife Sibyl, who proceeded him in death on September 17, 2009. Dr. Taylor and his wife had three children, Mathew E. Taylor, Marsha K. Taylor, and Lynda Seelye and two grandchildren, Matthew Seelye and Katie Seelye.


Dr. Frank C. Mello


Frank Mello is a scientist and conservationist who was born in Manteca and raised by his grandparents, Manuel and Mary Mello, on a dairy farm in Manteca. While attending Manteca High School, he was very active in Future Famers of America activities, serving as a state reporter and becoming a state champion in the steer competition. After graduating from Manteca High School in 1963, he attended Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, earning his bachelor of science degree in husbandry. He went on to earn a master’s degree from Fresno State in meat science, and his Ph.D. from the University of Wyoming in animal science and bioscience. He began his career as a biochemist for the Oscar Meyer/Kraft Corporation, and later became an executive with the Sara Lee Corporation in West Point, Mississippi. In 1998, he and his wife, Judy, started the B. Bryan Preserve. The preserve is a conservation center in Point Arena, California, focused on rare and endangered African hoof stock. The 110-acre coastal facility consists of Black Wildebeest, African Cape Buffalo, Rothschild’s Giraffe, Grevy’s and Hartmann’s Mountain Zebra, along with Roan, Sable, and Kudu Antelope. All of these African hoof stocks are very rare and some are the most endangered in all of Africa. The Mellos provide daily tours on their 110-arce preserve, with guests roaming through the preserve in vintage open-air Land Rovers (they are going to introduce electric cars soon). The guests travel through the preserve observing the animals in a beautiful natural setting. The preserve had more than 10,000 guests just last year; and besides viewing the animals, people can spend a few nights in rustic cottages on the property.


Georgiann Rose

At Large

A generous, loving heart. Talent galore. Deep roots in Manteca. These all describe Georgiann Rose. A lifelong Mantecan, Georgiann opened S P A C E S in 2012 with the mission to create, build, and design inspirational, style forward spaces that reflect the personality and goals of the client. With over 30 years of experience in commercial and residential interior design, you've probably admired Georgiann's designs at Ernie's restaurant, Cabana del Sol, the Raymus Homes Raceway Collection model homes, Steve’s Chevrolet in Oakdale, and countless private residences throughout the Central Valley. Family has always been central in Georgiann’s personal and professional life. The S P A C E S core team consists of her son, Kevin Rose, who manages the firm's remodel jobs, and her granddaughter, Chandler Rose, who assists with marketing and design. A true family business! Besides her passion for design, Georgiann is also passionate about working towards a cure for Alzheimer’s. After losing their mother to the disease, Georgiann and her brother, Mel Loureiro, began their own nonprofit - Music for Alzheimer's - to fundraise for the cure as well as gather and distribute CDs to comfort those affected by the disease. Throughout the years, Georgiann has led, participated in, and supported many local charitable organizations from the East Union Athletic Boosters to St. Anthony’s Church. Most notably, she was the first elected female president of the Manteca-Ripon Pentecost Society.


Ken Sanders

Community Service

It would be a challenge to attend any event in Manteca and not find Ken Sanders working to make sure everything goes smoothly. Ken does not like to lead the charge or be in the spotlight. As a volunteer, he prefers being behind the scenes doing most jobs that require him to be the first to arrive and the last to leave. Ken is described as an “Unsung Hero” due to the countless hours he contributes to many organizations and events. Ken often puts in more hours than those in charge without complaining and has, on many occasions, taken vacation time from his employment at Give Every Child A Chance to volunteer. Ken’s involvement is vast and legendary. From 2002-2004 Ken volunteered for Manteca Police Beat as part of the camera crew showing on air safety tips on cable TV to the Manteca community. Since 2003 he has been a member of Manteca’s Citizen Emergency Response Team (CERT). He was part of a CERT team that traveled to Florida during hurricane season to assist those displaced and in many cases who lost their homes. From 2005-16 he was in charge on logistics for the Manteca Street Faire and for many years assisted in the set-up of the weekly Farmers Market. He facilitated tough love classes for South County Crisis Center when the instructor was absent. Ken has worked at the Sunrise Kiwanis Pumpkin Fair in various capacities such as vendor check-in, hospitality cook, set-up and clean-up. He assisted in the restoration of the Manteca Chamber of Commerce parade stage and also has worked setting up both the Manteca Christmas Parade and Sunrise Kiwanis 4th of July Parade. Other volunteer work includes, Second Harvest Chili Cook-off, Cinco De-Mayo Celebration and other events in support of non-profit organizations. Most recently, he has worked logistics for the Great Valley Bookfest and once again the Manteca Street Faire. Ken has been honored for volunteerism by Manteca Sunrise Kiwanis as an Honorary Member in 2013 and received the Super “K” Award in 2017 for outstanding service. He has also been recognized by CERT and the Manteca Convention & Visitors Bureau. Ken graduated from Encinal High School in Alameda and is married to his wife Debbie where they enjoy their weekly bowling league. Ken and Debbie have one daughter, Amber, son in-law Chris and three grandchildren.


Ken Summers


With Manteca roots stretching back to the 1930s, Ken Summers is a great example of a hometown boy who made good Ken's great-grandfather, Pearson Leroy Fry, and grandfather, Paul Fry, Sr., founded the P.L. Fry & Son Funeral Home in Manteca in 1932, where Ken now serves as the fourth-generation funeral director. Ken began working for his grandmother, Lucille Fry, part time during high school. His part time job turned full time in 1986 and he later became the manager in 1997 when Lucille retired. Ken has served thousands of families and always regarded the goodwill and reputation of P.L. Fry & Son Funeral Home as second to none. His guiding principles are honesty, integrity, and quality in everything he does. This was instilled in him by his family at a young age. Ken received his AA Degree in Business from Delta College in Stockton and is a California Licensed Funeral Director, Cemetery Manager, and Crematory Manager. Ken also served as past president of the Valley Lode Funeral Directors Association. Besides being active professionally, Ken is also very active in the community. He is a former board member of the Manteca Historical Society and Museum, a past Committee Member of the Manteca Prayer Breakfast, and a past Manteca Chamber of Commerce Ambassador. Ken has been married to his wife, Lynne, for over 35 years. Ken and Lynne are both East Union High School graduates and have lived in Manteca their entire lives. They have two children, Kara Teach (and her husband Jeff) and Kenny Summers. Ken was very involved with his children's sports programs. He coached his daughter, Kara, for many years when she participated in competitive softball programs. Ken also coached and sponsored many basketball teams that his son, Kenny, participated in. Ken continues to sponsor various High School and Youth sports programs throughout the community.


Larry Lee Barnhizer


Larry Lee Barnhizer, our Inductee for Art, is being recognized for his independent coverage of regional wrestling matches at the Uptown Arena in Modesto more than 40 years ago. Larry has had many photos published in wrestling magazines across the country. He has photographed matches in Modesto, Stockton, Sacramento, San Jose, Oakland, San Francisco, Bakersfiel, and Fresno. Larry has photographed many of the great wrestlers such as Hulk Hogan, Jesse Ventura, Andre the Giant, Ray Stevens, Pat Patterson, Moon Dog, Ray Stevens and many others. Many of his photos are on display at the Pro Wrestling Hall of Fame in Wichita Falls, Texas. Larry was awarded a Travel award for photographing a wrestling fans convention in Knoxville, Tennessee in 1978. Larry Barnhizer, a Manteca resident who grew up in Riverbank and Modesto, began his career at ringside as a young amateur photographer, becoming an integral part of Northern California’s 100-year history of the entertaining sport. Larry worked at Spreckels Sugar Company in Manteca from 1960 to 1968, and Libby Owens Ford in Lathrop from 1968 to 1997. Mr. Barnhizer is married to Linda Barnhizer, and they have a son named Jeffery. Larry and his wife continue to live in Manteca. As far as taking pictures, Larry continues to still enjoys the Art of taking the perfect photograph. Congratulations Larry Lee Barnhizer!!!


Senator Cathleen Galgianai


Senator “Cathleen” Galgiani is a life-long San Joaquin County resident. She began her political career very young as an intern, and has dedicated most of her professional life to the people of California and San Joaquin County. After working as a local physical therapist and, prior to being elected to office, she became a full-time staff member for then-Insurance Commissioner John Garamendi. She also held positions with Assemblyman and Senator Patrick Johnson, and was Chief of Staff for Assemblywoman Barbara Matthews. Cathleen was also a valued staff member of California First Lady Sharon Davis. Cathleen served in the State Assembly for six years prior to being elected to the California State Senate in 2012, and re-elected in 2016. She is one of only 13 female senators in the state. Senator Galgiani has been recognized as a leader in growing California’s world-renown agricultural economy. She is an advocate for her district that encompasses San Joaquin County. As Chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee, she never forgets the importance of agriculture in the greater Manteca area. Cathleen has served and continues to serve on many Senate committees, including Insurance, Business, Higher Education, Professions & Economic Development, Transportation and Governmental Organization. Senator Galgiani played a key development role in securing funding for the establishment of U.C. Merced, now home to more than 5,000 students. U.C. Merced has the highest number of students who come from low-income families among all U.C. campuses. She has assisted several local organizations over the years, most notably Give Every Child A Chance. Cathleen was able to open doors to legislators and state officials so they could meet and discuss additional resources for after-school programs. Most recently, she has assisted the East Union Cemetery to regain its legal status. She has also worked with advocates to establish a “Family Justice Center” to provide services to victims of domestic violence. Cathleen led the effort to secure $20 million in the state budget to help pay for police officer training, community-oriented policing and collaboration between mental health professionals and law enforcement. Cathleen is appreciative of the people in Manteca and the surrounding area. She has remained active in local events and personally attends many herself while maintaining a very busy schedule in Sacramento. Throughout her tenure in the Legislature, Senator Cathleen Galgiani has been recognized by various labor, youth, law enforcement and education advocacy groups.


Three Amigos of East Union Cemetery
Janice Zacharias
Gloria Stanley
Janet Fiore

Community Service

Janice Zacharias, Janet Fiore, and Gloria Stanley make a great team. Along with a host of many others, these three are responsible for saving, and now maintaining, the East Union Memorial Cemetery at the corner of Louise and Union. The cemetery was incorporated in January 1877, and remains open today because of their efforts. In the early 2000s, the cemetery was struggling until Janice Zacharias joined the Board of Directors as its Treasurer. Janice, whose father and great-great grandfather are buried there, has a significant personal connection and wanted to improve the cemetery. In June 2015, a new board was sworn in, with Janice as President, Gloria Stanley as Vice President/Treasurer and Janet Fiore as Secretary/Office Manager. Janice retired in 2014 as a reading teacher for the Manteca Unified School District. Gloria retired in 2013 as a hospital unit clerk from San Joaquin General Hospital. And Janet retired as a secretary from Center Plumbing in 2012. Their first task was to work with the State of California to earn back the cemetery’s operating license, clean up the physical environment of the cemetery, and organize a garage full of old records. In addition, they needed to create an up-to-date plot map, fix the irrigation system and restore the office that is on site. With the help of many community volunteers during the cemetery’s spring and fall cleanups, they have accomplished many of their goals and tasks. These determined women are planning to build a cremation wall and a veterans’ area around the flag pole. The cemetery still has space for 800 plots and 1,000 cremated remains. Through a private donation, they were also able to construct a new wrought iron fence and new paving. These three dedicated women, often refereed to as the “The Three Amigos of East Union Cemetery,” have gone beyond the call of duty to resurrect one of Manteca’s oldest historical sites.


Vincent Hernandez


Vince Hernandez was one of the first babies born in 1962 at Manteca Hospital (now Doctors Hospital) shortly after it opened. He grew up in Manteca, attending Lincoln Elementary and Lindbergh Elementary. He graduated from Manteca High School in 1980, and then attended Delta College. After Delta, he earned his Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies and Master of Arts for Special Education from the University of the Pacific. He earned his Basic Pupil Personnel Credential for school psychology from the University of California, Davis. Vince Hernandez started his educational career as a special education teacher for the Oakdale Unified School District in 1986, was a school psychologist in the Turlock, the San Joaquin County Office of Education, the New Jerusalem Delta Charter School. He currently works for the Stockton Unified School District as a special education administrator. Vince was elected to the Manteca City Council in 2002 and served until 2014. During his tenure, he was a co-chair for the city’s negotiations with Big League Dreams. He also advocated and supported renovations of Lincoln Park and the Morezone Park baseball field, as well as the establishment of the BMX track and working to secure the Great Wolf Resort indoor water park. He was also instrumental in developing Woodward Park as well as securing Stadium Retail Center, the Manteca Transit Center, Bass Pro Shops, and AMC Theatre among other projects He volunteered 18 years as a Manteca Little League and Manteca Babe Ruth baseball coach, 9 years as a Catholic Youth Organization basketball coach, 8 years as a Manteca Area Soccer League coach, and co-chaired the Manteca Children’s Foundation Antone Raymus Charity Golf and Car Show from 1998 to 2018. He served on the Doctors Hospital of Manteca governing board from 2014 to 2016 and has been a member of the Great Valley Bookfest Committee and Manteca Rotary Club. He also is a member of the Knights of Columbus, served on the San Joaquin Regional Rail Commission overseeing the Altamont Corridor Express from 2014 to 2016, served as a Give Every Child a Chance board member from 2003 to 2011, and was on the St. Anthony of Padua School Board from 2002 to 2006. Vince is married to Risa, who is a teacher at Sequoia Elementary School. They have three children: Sebastian, 26, Ana, 25 and Vincent III, 17.