Stewart Jay McFarland


Stewart Jay McFarland , long time Marin County resident, passed away on April18, 2023 after valiantly battling a long series of illnesses and health setbacks . He was born on August 20, 1955 in Corvallis Oregon and was a fifth generation Oregonian. As a young man in the late 70’s he made his way to Marin County by motorcycle to join his brother and sister who had already set up residence .

Stu is survived by his longtime life partner Virginia Beauchamp , his sister Jennifer McFarland, mother Caroline McFarland, brother Alex McFarland, sister in law Marybeth McFarland , and two nieces Devan and Jenna, as well as his nephew Jake and great niece Sophia.

As a young man Stu , like many other children of the time, picked produce when not going to school . His dream to work for the Oregon Highway Department was denied to him by a congenital medical condition that kept him from being hired . He attended two semesters of college in Oregon and was a teachers assistant for a time. He was very gifted in all things mechanical. As a young man he would buy inexpensive cars and fix them to re- sell. He worked at a shop that renovated recreational vehicles . He also worked at a Christmas tree lot where he lived during the season to watch over the trees. In the span of his working career he held many jobs including being a manager of the Sears service center in the Northgate Mall . He also worked in other positions in the company including the Tool department and estimating carpet installations. People that met him there will remember him for his helpfulness and dedication. Stewart became a caretaker for well known Mill Valley photographer Pirkle Jones, who was a student of Ansel Adams . He was a manager for many years at San Anselmo Self Storage until his health forced him to retire early. He was valued for his honesty , friendliness, strong work ethic and troubleshooting abilities. If you needed someone you could count on, Stu was your man!

Stewart was a very sweet and loving person. While his health was still good , he enjoyed fishing, traveling, and treasure hunting at garage sales, flea markets, and second hand stores. He loved a good hunt and had a great eye for a find . If there was a job title for this hobby, his would have been “Urban Archaeologist”! He enjoyed listening to jazz music.

Stewart was fortunate to be able to travel for a time during which he visited Sweden, Maui, Boston, and locations in New York and Pennsylvania.

Stewart was on a kidney transplant list. Sadly, he was not able to get a kidney in time. In death, he was able to make tissue donations to help give a quality of life to several other people. He would have been happy and proud of that!

If you have any stories to share about Stu they would be greatly appreciated and collected into a book of remembrance for the family. (How did you meet, favorite memory or observance, any photos, etc.) They can be left as an email to [email protected] or by phone message to 415/686/1635.

Stu will be greatly missed by all of his friends and family.
A small family gathering will be held at his sister’s home to plant a tree in his remembrance on what would have been his 68th birthday.
Donations in his honor can be made to :
Vivalon Senior services in Marin
The Marin Food Bank
The Marin Humane Society
or St. Jude’s

Tammy Lee Davis


Tammy was the youngest of four children born to Nugean and Mary Jane. Tammy was raised in Sunnyvale, with her sisters.  While growing up she made some lifelong friends, and she stayed connected with them throughout her life. In 1982 she met Ray while working as a temp within a company he worked. Through their courtship they married in 1985 and was blessed with their first child the following year, RJ, and Gene 3 years later. Tammy had a heart of gold and gave the boy’s all the love she had. Ray and Tammy also gave them the joy of camping, fishing, boating and car shows. Tammy loved attending her children’s sporting events and was probably the loudest mom there.  One could hear her from miles away.  Tammy was just blessed with her first Grandchild, who she loved dearly.  Tammy lived and loved hard.  She never judged anyone and was there without asking for anything in return.  Ray and Tammy had set roots in Hayward where they spent many years raising their family.  Their home is also where she passed peacefully.  This is a great sadness to all. 

Survived by: Husband Ray, Sons, RJ and Gene, Daughter-in-law, Marcy, Grandson DJ, Sisters Vinney, Rhonda, Sharon and many Nieces and Nephews, Cousins, Uncles and Aunts and all of the extended family who called her Mom, Aunty, Granma, Sister and friend.

Jane S. Phibbs

After a long life extremely well lived, Jane S. Phibbs, our family matriarch, passed away in December. Born to Donald K. Sargent and Jane S. Sargent in upstate NY, she was the oldest of 2 children. She earned a degree in fashion design at Syracuse University where she met her future husband and lifelong partner of 71 years, Roderic H. Phibbs. They were married and remained in Syracuse where Rod attended Medical School and there began the journey of a truly remarkable woman.

A medical residency at UCSF brought them West where they set down permanent roots in Mill Valley. She raised four boys, Ciaran, Chris, Rann and Peter but those who knew her best would tell you she had 6 sons. Consistent with her magnanimous and open personality, she acted as “stand-in” Mom to Hossein and Allan, and welcomed them into the fold of her lively household as one of her own.

Jane’s first job was as a master seamstress, a skill she maintained throughout her life. She even had her own design label in Syracuse and made bespoke dresses for numerous women. In San Francisco she taught as a mentor in the “Poverty Project” at Hunters Point, teaching new mothers how to stretch a dollar and a dinner. Eventually, she would follow in her father’s footsteps, an acclaimed architect and Dean of the School of Architecture at Syracuse University, and hone her drafting skills to become a kitchen designer. This led to a position at Lamperti where she left her mark on many kitchens throughout Marin. Also influenced by her father’s love of gardening, Jane never met a bulb that she didn’t like. Gardening was one of her passions and every spring her yard was painted with her favorite blue and yellow blossoms.

Jane was a multitalented and multidimensional woman. While raising her boys she also bred golden retrievers. The household never had fewer than 2 goldens in residence and many of her friends had offspring from the litters that she bred. Not one to ever sit still, Jane’s talents were many. She was a prolific needle pointer and knitter, all original designs. Those that she loved the most have many of her creations. She was a culinary maverick, cooking dishes inspired by the seasonal bounties from Rod’s incredible vegetable garden before it was en vogue to eat “farm to table” and organic. Her binders of clipped recipes are legendary. They were her culinary bibles, filled with tested and vetted recipes that became a staple of meals at the family round table. Her holiday baking bonanza was a tradition to behold. Family and friends, far and wide, looked forward to the annual delivery of her cookie and cake trays, a tradition she upheld every year.

An avid baseball fan, she remained loyal to her original NY Giants who eventually became the SF Giants. During the baseball season, she was always listening to KNBR’s live broadcasts. Otherwise, she was tuned in to KQED for classical music that provided the background track of her life in Mill Valley.

She and Rod loved to travel internationally but most especially to their spot on Tomales Bay. It is here that they both became involved with MALT and the preservation of open space. She was an extraordinary woman and if you were lucky enough to call her mom, grandma, mother in law, or friend you were blessed.

She is survived by her husband Rod, her sons Ciaran (Jill), Chris (Renee), Rann, and Peter, her grandchildren Meagan (Mike), Shannon, Brianna, Claire, Savannah and Jack and her great granddaughter, Ella Jane, who carries both her namesake and remarkable likeness, and her dog “T”. She will be dearly missed.

A celebration of her life will be held in the spring at her favorite lunch spot.

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If you would like to learn more about our green burial and cremation services or for any other matter, please contact Fernwood Cemetery and Funeral Home at 415-383-7100 or through the form on our contact page.

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