In Memory

Anthony Tognazzini

Anthony Tognazzini


Anthony P Tognazzini passed away on Sunday December 10, 2017 at home on Anderson Island, Washington at the age of 76. He was born into the Arthur and Mary Tognazzini Dairy family of Guadalupe, California. Anthony was the older brother to Laura Dias of Santa Maria and Arthur M Tognazzini of Paso Robles, CA.

A Funeral Mass will be celebrated on Thursday, December 28th 10:30 am at St. Louis de Montfort Church, Santa Maria. A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, January 6th 11:00 am at the Fire Station on Anderson Island.

Anthony was Student Body President at Santa Maria High School and voted “Best Personality” in the class of 1959. He also won early recognition with a state 4-H Club dairy award. As a teen he believed in the club's work and its training made him a useful citizen throughout his life. Anthony met his first wife Mary Franzina, who predeceased him, at Cal-Poly where he received a farm management degree. After graduating from college, he served in the US Coast Guard Reserves.

Anthony was a loyal son, loving husband and devoted father to his two children - a true family man. He balanced responsibilities on the Sunset Laguna Ranch, located west of Santa Maria, with parenting and community service. Anthony was a director of the Western Dairymen's Association and served on the Santa Maria Valley Water Conservation District board for several years. In the late 80's, he became involved with the United Way and chaired a drug prevention program at Righetti High. His children loved spending time with their father; whether it was building a dollhouse, flying RC planes, or working together on projects around the farm. But mostly, they remember all the great road trips: to amusement parks and dairy princess contests in the summer, to distant friends and ski resorts in the winter.

In 1989, Anthony married Diana Lloyd, his wife of 28 years. She appreciated how very supportive he was while she studied for a PHD in Seattle. Because Anthony enjoyed life in Washington so much, they decided to move to the small community of Anderson Island. There he began a new successful career in real estate. Many current residents say he was the first person to shake their hand, smile warmly and welcome them to the island.

Anthony had a talent for cooking and a passion for hosting. He introduced islanders to Santa Maria-style BBQ and served it at several yearly events. It wasn't long before Anthony and his partners purchased the Island Coffee Shop & Cafe. He built it into a social hub - the place for good food, good friends and good fun! He cooked pancakes and made paninis, but burgers with Anthony's special sauce were a favorite on the menu.

Anthony was actively involved in and dedicated to his community. He was an EMT and volunteer firefighter for 20 years. He made the best little fire station even better by establishing a safety patrol and teaching new recruits. Anthony was named Firefighter of the Year in 2000. In 2008, he and his boat rescue team worked to extricate a 65-year old man, who was trapped in mud with the tide rapidly rising up past his chest, and saved his life. Even after suffering a stroke, Anthony continued to attend church regularly and to greet islander's at a weekly morning social. In recognition of his kind hearted, generous service and helpfulness in times of crisis; Anthony was declared “2013 Islander of the Year”.

In addition to his wife and two siblings, Anthony is survived by his son John Tognazzini of Santa Maria, step-daughter Heidi Struble of Oakland, daughter Lisa Sharp and two grandchildren of Reston, VA, four nephews and two nieces.

Contributions in memory of Anthony Tognazzini may be made to the Anderson Island Firefighters Association at 12207 Lake Josephine Blvd, Anderson Island, WA 98303.