Tom Jondahl - Bonner County Daily Bee: Obituaries

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Tom Jondahl

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Posted: Friday, September 28, 2012 10:00 am


Tom Jondahl, retired sheriff of Mendocino County, Calif., died on Sept. 22, 2012, after a valiant battle against lung cancer over a period of nearly two years.

Tom was a man of integrity; a great fun-lover (and practical joker), but also a serious and conscientious man.

He was a proud law enforcement professional for 32 years, serving as police chief in three California communities before being elected sheriff of Mendocino County in 1974.

After his retirement from Mendocino County in 1982, Tom traveled extensively throughout the United States as well as traveling to Korea, India, South Africa and Norway in recent years.

He treasured his visits to South Africa and seeing the beauty of the animals in the African bush and he was thrilled to visit the town of Jondal, Norway, from where the first Jondahls originated, and where some family members remain.

Tom lived in Sandpoint, Idaho, for most of the past 15 years. He and his wife of five years, Joanie, relocated to Green Valley, Ariz., recently, giving up the pristine beauty of northern Idaho, but gaining the sunshine and relaxed living of Arizona.

Tom is survived by Joanie, who was courageously by his side during his final years. He was preceded in death by his late wife of 46 years, Becky.

He leaves behind a daughter, Terri Jondahl, and her husband, Richard Drye, of Buford, Ga.; a daughter, Tammi Wesel-sky, and her husband Bruce Weselsky of Ukiah; a son, Thomas Edward Jondahl, and his wife, Sandra, of Austin, Texas; a stepdaughter, Sherri Gravier, and her husband, Bruce, of Laytonville; grandchildren, Alisa Weselsky Arrington, and her husband, Bryan Arrington, of Ukiah (and their two children, Ty Bruce and Cadence Rebecca), Thomas Blake Jondahl of Austin, Texas; and a step-grandchild, Kevin Gravier and his wife, Amanda; along with sisters, cousins, nieces and nephews around the country.

Services will be held at Eversole Mortuary at 1 p.m. on Oct. 5, 2012, followed by a celebration of life at the Elks Lodge immediately following services.

Hospice played a very valuable role in Tom’s final days and his family invites those who are interested to consider supporting their local hospice in Tom’s memory.

Flowers are certainly welcomed at the service and the celebration for those so inclined.

A memorial website has been established on and the family would love to have folks share their stories about Tom on this site so that they can treasure the memories forever.