Obituaries: May 31, 2017

Richard ‘Shorty’ Barnett

Richard “Shorty” Barnett, 76, of Buckeye died May 22, 2017, from Parkinson’s disease.

Mr. Barnett was born June 21, 1940, in Covington, Ky., to Richard J. and Jean Barnett.

The family moved to Southern California and he graduated from West Covina High School.

He served in the U.S. Air Force from 1958 to 1962.

He was an engineer at General Dynamics in Pomona and Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.

He served as a Boy Scout leader in Chino, Calif.

He moved to Buckeye in 2003.

He is survived by his wife, Patricia; one daughter, Rebecca; three sons, Richard V., Mathew and Peter; one sister, Sharon Baca; one brother, Robert M. Barnett; and 10 grandchildren.

A memorial service will be at 11 a.m. June 3 at Trinity Lutheran Church, 830 E. Plaza Circle, Litchfield Park.


Porter Arthur Hurt Jr.

Porter Arthur Hurt Jr., 76, of Litchfield Park died May 24, 2017.

Mr. Hurt was born Nov. 1, 1940, in Baltimore to Porter Sr. and Margaret Hurt.

He lived most of his life in California.

He joined the U.S. Marine Corps in 1960 and served as an anti-aircraft batteryman attached to the 1st Light Anti-Aircraft Missile Battalion “Charlie” in Twentynine Palms, Calif., before being honorably discharged in 1966.

He worked in the construction industry as a sheet rock hanger in San Jose, Calif. He worked for a Silicon Valley electronics distributor as a stock boy and became general sales manager of the company. He started his own electronics company, which grew into three Silicon Valley companies — PH Components, Testology and Actrix. Actrix developed and marketed integrated personal computers, printers and mobile telephones, which led to an appearance on Good Morning America and a Wall Street Journal profile. He opened a chain of Sh Boom nightclubs in the San Francisco Bay area.

After retiring, he moved to Litchfield Park and joined the Wigwam Golf Club. He and his wife started H&C Properties, a rental and house flipping business.

He is survived by his wife of 30 years, Robin; two daughters, Stacey Votta of Portland, Ore., and Shelly Hurt of San Luis Obispo, Calif.; one stepdaughter, Cheyenne Cook of Litchfield Park; two sisters, SueEllen James and Kathy Hurt; three grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.

A visitation will be at 9:30 a.m., followed by services at 10:30 a.m. today at the Church at Litchfield Park, 300 N. Old Litchfield Road, Litchfield Park.

The Rev. Dale Hopely will officiate.

Interment will be at the National Memorial Cemetery of Arizona.

Memorials may be made to St. Jude Children’s Hospital, 262 Danny Thomas Road, Memphis, TN 38105.

Condolences may be left at


Irene Luna Perez

Irene Luna Perez, 68, of Buckeye died May 24, 2017, in Goodyear.

Mrs. Perez was born Nov. 10, 1948, in San Antonio to Magdaleno and Juanita Perez.

She was preceded in death by two sons, Eddy Reyna and Anthony Reyna.

She is survived by four daughters, Irene Hernandez, Lisa Campos, Maria Larios and Rose Valenzuela; five sons, Thomas Reyna, Librado Reyna Jr., Jesus Murillo, Juan Perez and Richard Perez; five brothers, Andy Perez, Roy Perez, Magdaleno Perez Jr., Ruben Perez, David Perez and Steve Perez; 46 grandchildren; and 43 great-grandchildren.

A visitation will be at 10 a.m., followed by services at 11 a.m. today at La Mision Jubilee Center, 11147 W. Buckeye Road, Avondale, followed by interment at Holy Cross Cemetery, 9925 W. Thomas Road, Avondale.

Condolences may be left at


Ken Robinson

Ken Robinson, 81, of Goodyear died May 6, 2017, at his home.

Mr. Robinson was born Aug. 1, 1935, in Tacoma, Wash., to George and Leila Robinson.

He attended Lincoln High School in Tacoma and graduated with a degree in electrical engineering from the University of Washington in Seattle.

He served as a pilot in the U.S. Navy for 22 years and retired as a commander. He taught for 10 years at Eastside Catholic School in Bellevue, Wash., then worked at Boeing for 10 years before retiring to the PebbleCreek community in Goodyear.

He is survived by his wife of 57 years, Virginia; two daughters, Mary Tighe Robinson and Teresa Owens; one son, David Robinson; and five grandchildren.

A funeral Mass was celebrated at St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church in Avondale. Interment will be at a later date at the Tahoma National Cemetery in Maple Valley, Wash.


Dwayne Shipp

Dwayne Shipp, 82, of Tonopah died April 25, 2017.

He was born in Texas to David and Ovella Shipp and moved to Arizona at a young age.

He worked as a truck driver and met his wife, Joyce, in Massachusetts, where she was born.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Joyce Shipp.

He is survived by two daughters, Rhoda Heath and Becky Klaasen; two sons, Danny Shipp and Andy Shipp; one brother, Ron Shipp; grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

This obituary is being reprinted to add information.


Patricia Mae Watkins

Patricia Mae Watkins, 87, of Litchfield Park died May 22, 2017.

Mrs. Watkins was born May 17, 1930, to Patrick Joseph O’Reilly and Lilly Mae Daffern in Phoenix.

She graduated from North Phoenix High School in 1948.

She was preceded in death by her husband of 56 years, Ralph A. Watkins.

She is survived by one daughter, Cynthia Elaine Haggard; one son, Ralph A. Watkins III; six grandchildren; and nine great-grandchildren.

Services were Tuesday at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 8702 W. Campbell, Phoenix.

Condolences for the family may be left at




Suzanne Leyva

Suzanne Leyva, age 40 of Phoenix, AZ died May 24, 2017. Born July 30, 1976 in Phoenix, AZ.

Suzanne is survived by her significant other Matt Watson, mother Maria G. Leyva, three step-children Issiah, Gabbie, and Michael; brother Nick M. Leyva; sister-in-law Marlena; two nephews Nick Jr. and Issac Leyva; and two nieces Jazmin and Mayq Leyva.

Funeral services will be held June 1, 5-8pm at Buckeye Funeral Home, and June 2, 10am at St. Henrys. Pastor Fr. William J. Kosco will be officiating the services.

Memorials can be sent to 24750 W. Lower Buckeye Rd., Buckeye, AZ 85326.

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