In Memoriam

  1. Donald R. Lawrence 1925-2010
  2. Ray Kelley Kliewer 1944-2009
  3. Wally Donley 1922-2007
  4. Sam Sarkis Markarian 1933-2004
  5. Gary Ray Lencioni 1945-2003
  6. George Hoover 1915-2003



The following is a continuation of articles featuring the life of San Joaquin Valley ASHRAE members. This article features Donald R. Lawrence, Mechanical Engineer.

Don's father was a supervisor for Texaco in the oil fields of Taft. His Dad would not hire Don because he thought Don should be where he would not have any special treatment.

So Don obtained a job with Honolulu Oil Company, working June-September during his high school years. He worked as a roustabout, digging trenches and moving pipe. Engineers who visited the oil fields wore knickers. Don thought knickers were really "cool" and wanted to be a person who wore them too. So Don set out to be an engineer.

World War II came along and Don was part of the troops. After the war, he attended Cal Poly on the GI Bill. He graduated in 1949 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Engineering.

After graduation, he joined the Baker Newman Company in Modesto, CA, as a junior plumber and pipe fitter. He installed mechanical systems for hospitals, schools and public buildings. It was rare to have a college graduate as part of a Pipe Fitters Union. He was employed with Baker Newman for three years.

Harold Hayes, Dean of the Cal Poly School of Engineering, heard about Don working as a pipe fitter. He felt that a person with a degree and practical experience would make a great teacher. Don was hired as a Professor and taught HVAC and plumbing for three years at Cal Poly. Don recalls that one of his students, Costas Econamu, was one of the most brilliant individuals he ever knew. Costas became a very wealthy contractor.

In 1955, Don accepted the opportunity to be Vice Present and Chief Engineer for Conditioned Air, a mechanical contracting firm in Fresno. Don had the opportunity to work with Nat Leas, John Rowden, Don Enn, Jim Van Camp and many others. Significant projects designed and constructed by Conditioned Air include Sacred Heart Hospital - Hanford, St. Agnes Medical Center - Fresno, and Kaweah Delta Hospital - Visalia.

Don was active in the San Joaquin Valley Chapter of ASHRAE. He worked through the Officer Chairs from 1969 through 1972 and was Chapter President 1972-1973.

In 1977, after 20 years in contracting, Don took the opportunity to join Jim Blaney, Mechanical/Electrical Engineer, in the consulting business at the TW Patterson Building, Suite 323. Unfortunately, Jim Blaney was ill with multiple-sclerosis and was not able to continue a partnership after one year.

Don worked to grow the firm and asked Gilbert Nye to join in 1977 and Steve Becker in 1979. The firm name became Donald R. Lawrence and Associates. Don continued as President of the Company until his retirement in 1990. Significant projects designed by Donald R. Lawrence and Associates include CUSD - Kastner Intermediate School, Manchester Center expansion, St. Agnes West Wing, Kaweah Delta East Wing and Buchanan Education Center. Seven of the employees that were part of the firm in 1980 remain part of the company today.

After retiring from Donald R. Lawrence and Associates, Don enjoyed his yacht in the Delta and RV travel.

He lives in Fresno with his wife Teri and enjoys his grandchildren on a regular basis.

Information obtained by Gilbert L. Nye, P.E., FASHRAE - Historian SJVC ASHRAE

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Ray Kelley Kliewer


Ray Kelley Kliewer was born to Daniel H. and Anna K. Kliewer on June 20, 1944, in Bakersfield, California. His childhood was spent in Bakersfield until his parents moved to Kingsburg in 1957. He placed his faith in Christ Jesus as his Savior as a young child and was baptized into membership at the Rosedale Mennonite Brethren Church. Knowing and following his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ was always first priority in Ray's life. In 1962, he graduated from Kingsburg High School and moved on to attend Fresno Pacific College. He finished his education at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo where he received his Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering Sciences with an emphasis in Industrial Refrigeration in 1971. On July 1, 1966, he married the love of his life, Loralee Weinbrenner at the Reedley First Mennonite Church which was followed by a honeymoon that lasted 43 years. One of the greatest joy's in Ray's life was becoming a father. His son, Jay Kenan was born in 1972; daughters Danna Lorene, and Christina Renee followed in 1975 and 1977. Spending time with his family, especially on trips taken together was something that he always treasured and talked about when looking back on his life. In 1984, once again after much prayer and seeking after God's will, Ray took a leap of faith and started a refrigeration contracting business 'CalCA'. Running a business was often a struggle, but through CalCA, the Lord allowed Ray not only to provide for his own family, but to also touch the lives of countless others in the San Joaquin Valley and as far away as India and China. On July 11, 2009, Ray was taken home to heaven to be with his Lord. He is predeceased in death by his parents, Daniel and Anna Kliewer of Kingsburg. He is survived by his wife Loralee; his son Jay and his wife Lisa and their children, Jared age five and Adeline age three, of Kingsburg; his daughter, Danna Kliewer of San Jose, and his daughter Christina Kliewer of Monterey. He is also survived by his sister, Penninah Weaver and her husband Vern; his brother, Pete Kliewer and his wife Dora Mae; his brother, Paul Kliewer and his wife Rachel;, his sister Eileen Karber, as well as many nieces and nephews. A Graveside Service will be held at Reedley Cemetery on Wednesday, July 15, 2009, at 10:00 a.m. A Memorial Service will follow at the Dinuba Mennonite Brethren Church at 11:00 a.m. CAIRNS FUNERAL HOME 940 'F' Street Reedley, Ca. (559)638-2233

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Wally Donley


WALLACE LEIGH DONLEY An Extraordinary Gentleman has left us. Wallace Leigh Donley passed away on Tuesday, February 20, 2007, in Sacramento following a short illness. Born in Glasgow, Scotland on May 5, 1922, Wally lived in Detroit, Michigan from the age of three and grew up there. He volunteered for the Royal Canadian Air Force at the start of World War II, flying over 70 combat missions as a Halifax navigator. After the war, he earned a bachelor's degree in Engineering from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, then started his own consulting business, W.L. Donley & Associates, in California in 1955. He later earned a Certificate of Proficiency in Environmental Engineering from the University of California at Long Beach. Wally was a highly respected member of the Architectural and Engineering community and continued to work full-time as principal of the consulting practice he had founded until his final illness. He was an active member and past officer of professional and service organizations to include American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers, Consulting Engineers & Land Surveyors of California, and the Fresno Host Lions Club. He belonged to St. Columba Episcopal Church in Fresno for nearly 50 years, serving on the church's Vestry board in the 1970's. He was also a former assistant scoutmaster with Boy Scout Troop 95 in Fresno. Wally will be remembered by his family and friends for his integrity, wit, wisdom, generosity, personal loyalty, dedication to what he believed in, and his irrepressible sense of humor. He is survived by Pearl, his loving wife of 53 years; brother Bert Donley; daughters Leigh, Leisa and Leslie Donley; son Bruce Donley; and grandchildren, Anne Marie, David, and William Fite, Mariah and Melody Mandlebaum, and Jasper Donley. A Memorial Service has been scheduled at St. Columba Church in Fresno on Friday, April 20, 2007, at 2:30 p.m.

Wally's ASHRAE Accomplishments.pdf
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Sam Sarkis Markarian


SAM SARKIS MARKARIAN Sam Markarian was born on December 21, 1933, in Highland Park, MI and died on Monday, April 12, 2004. He moved to Fresno when he was nine years old. Sam graduated from Roosevelt High School and attended UC Berkeley before entering the U. S. Army during the Korean War. He worked as a mechanical engineer for W.L. Donley and Associates and later for John Frank Mitchell. Next, he became the head of Plumbing and Mechanical Inspections for the City of Fresno. He was affiliated with the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials and served on their national code committee. He retired in 2003 from the City of Fresno but remained on the faculty of the State Center Community College District as a part-time instructor of Plumbing and Mechanical Codes. He is survived by his wife of 43 years, Madelyn; his son Scott and daughter-in-law Kirsten of Fresno; and by his son Allen of Ohio. His brother Vartan Markarian of Nevada also survives him. Sam had two grandchildren, Jacob and Jenna of Fresno. We'll miss your fun loving spirit and the mischievous twinkle in your eye. Visitation will be held at Yost & Webb Funeral Home on Friday, April 16, 2004, from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. A Knights of Vartan Service will be held at Yost & Webb that evening at 7:00 p.m. A Graveside Service will be held at Belmont Memorial Park on Saturday, April 17, 2004, at 10:30 a.m., followed by a Memorial Service at Pilgrim Armenian Congregational Church at 11:00 a.m. Remembrances may be made to Pilgrim Armenian Congregational Church. YOST & WEBB FUNERAL HOME1002 "T" St. 237-4147

Published in the Fresno Bee on 4/15/2004.

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Gary Ray Lencioni


GARY RAY LENCIONI Jun 25, 1945 - Oct 27, 2003 Gary was born and raised in Sanger, CA. After attending Fresno State University, he served two years in the U.S. Army at Huntsville, AL. He worked for Sperry New Holland and City of Fresno before starting his own successful mechanical engineering consulting firm in 1983. He designed HVAC and Plumbing systems for buildings throughout California and military projects throughout the country. He was preceded in death by his parents Gino and Mary and his brother Dennis. Gary was a man of many talents who could build or fix almost anything. His hobbies included woodworking, old tractors, guns, traveling and cars. He was past president of the CCC BMW Club. He had a passion for instructing at driving schools and racing. Gary was an active member of East Fresno Rotary. He enjoyed the fundraisers and projects, such as landscaping Craycroft Sonshine Ranch and restoring Riverview Ranch. He met many good friends through these clubs. Gary is survived by Jean, his wife of 34 years; his son Garen; daughter Autumn; brother Ron; nephews Doug and Nico; and niece Dani. He was proud of his family, especially for all their support during his battle with cancer. A Memorial Service will be held at the Family Community Church, 2434 E. Nees in Fresno on Sunday, November 2, 2003, at 2:00 p.m. Remembrances may be made to The American Cancer Society.

Published in the Fresno Bee on 11/11/2003.

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George Worth Hoover


GEORGE WORTH HOOVER May 8, 1915-Nov. 7, 2003 George Hoover, age 88, was born in Audubon, IA and moved to Fresno, CA, in 1933. He was vice president and manager of the Fresno branch of Norman Wright Mechanical Equipment Co. He retired in 1985. He was preceded in death by his daughter, Carol Jeffrey; and his grandson, Christopher Paul Wayte. He is survived by his loving wife, Mildred; his daughter, Gayle Hoover; his grandchildren, Kimberly Wayte, Marc Dielman, and Tom Jeffrey, Jr.; and his great-granddaughter, Annie Kennedy. "A wonderful husband, father and grandpa" A Memorial Service will be held at Neptune Society Chapel, 1154 W. Shaw Ave, Fresno, on Saturday, November 15, 2003, at 12:00 noon. Remembrances may be made to the donor's favorite charity.

Published in the Fresno Bee on 11/11/2003.

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