James A. Hegarty died Aug. 1. He was 91.
Hegarty was born in Oakland to James and Florence Hegarty. He was raised in Santa Rosa and served in the Army during WWII. His mother changed his age so he could join the Army at age 16. A year later the war broke out. He spent the next four years fighting in the Pacific theater as a sergeant, returning home after the war at the ripe old age of 21. He survived beach landings in the Aleutian Islands and the Battle of Leyte Gulf in the Philippines and was a mortar squad leader.
After the Army, Hegarty graduated from Santa Rosa Junior College and then the University of California, Berkeley. He was employed by the Lawrence Livermore National Labory as a physicist for 33 years, retiring in 1988.
Hegarty was the perfect father, not only to his own children, but also to several neighbors and friends. He will be missed by all who were fortunate to know him.
He was predeceased by his first wife Ginny (1964) and his second wife Guylene (2013). He is survived by his sons: Jack (Marilyn) Swire of Santa Rosa; Jim (Denyse) Hegarty of Livermore; Ken (Bonnie) Hegarty of Livermore; Charlie (Vickie) Hegarty of Cloverdale and daughter Ginger (Ken) Common of Pioneer. He is also survived by many grandchildren and great grandchildren.
A celebration of life will be held on Saturday, Oct. 24 at 1 p.m., at the Veterans Memorial Building in Livermore.
Donations can be made in his name to Hospice of Amador, 1500 S. Highway 49, #105, Jackson, California 95642; the American Cancer Society; or to Alzheimer’s research.