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Obituaries » Annie Brokaw Tobin

Annie Brokaw Tobin

December 5, 2018

A funeral mass and celebration will be held Thursday, December 13 at 11AM at St. Philips the Apostle in Occidental, CA, followed by a luncheon reception at the Union Hotel. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Timothy Murphy School for Boys in Annie’s name. It was her special cause.

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Ann “Annie” Brokaw Tobin, 71, beloved wife, mother, sister and friend, passed away after a valiant battle with cancer on December 5. Having just celebrated her 49th wedding anniversary, she died peacefully in her home in Sebastopol, CA. Annie is survived by her faithful and loving husband, Michael Tobin, who fought alongside her until her last breath and by her three children, Patrick Tobin (Meytal Markman), Molly Garvey (Travis Garvey) and Cathleen Hanagan (Thomas Hanagan). She is also survived by her six siblings: John Brokaw, Susie Weichselbaum, William Brokaw, Karen Steggall, Peter Brokaw and Jean Sellnau.

Annie was born to the late John and Patricia Brokaw in East Orange, New Jersey in 1947, the eldest of seven children. The family relocated to Palatine, Illinois where she graduated from Palatine High School. Ready for some sunshine, Annie moved to Manhattan Beach in Southern California. It was here she met (several times) the love of her life, Michael Tobin. Worn down by his wit and charm, Annie agreed to go on a date with the young USC Business School grad from San Francisco; and the rest, as they say, is history. Annie and Mike were married in November of 1969 and lived in Breckenridge, CO and Bothell, WA before settling in Marin County in the Bay Area. With three children at St. Raphael’s in San Rafael and then Marin Catholic College Prep, Annie dedicated her life to her children and their education. She volunteered in their schools and served as President of the Parents’ Club for several years at both schools. With her children grown, Annie took a new calling, volunteering as a Godmother at Timothy Murphy School for Boys at St. Vincent’s in San Rafael. She helped give a maternal touch to boys faced with growing up with little family support. Annie was also a master candle maker and crafter. She loved creating handmade cards and leading classes with her friends to create the perfect card for her loved ones, preferably with Chardonnay tasting of oak and butter in hand. She was happiest when playing with her seven amazing grandchildren, Sean and Sarah Tobin, Ciaran, Conor and Ashlin Garvey and Gillian and Ryan Hanagan.

In 2004, Annie and Mike decided to search for a family home in Sonoma County, a place where the family would always be able to gather. They found their perfect spot in West Sonoma County in the Russian River Valley, on the banks of the Russian River, where Annie discovered her paradise. In love with the vineyards, orchards and fresh air, Annie and Mike made their house into the warmest home where all of the kids, grandkids and friends would gather. It was here, with the priceless view of the green rolling hills and vineyards, that Annie first staged her battle with renal cancer. She faced this challenge as she had everything in her life; with grace, strength, humor and the unwavering support of family and friends. Mike never left her side, tending to her with awe-inspiring strength and tenderness. The connection between them is a true and unconditional love that inspires everyone around them.

Annie will be remembered as a dedicated wife, fantastic mother, loving grandmother and genuine soul who will always be with us. She led everything she did in life with grace and wit, always putting others needs before her own, and with a smile that filled the room.

A funeral mass and celebration will be held Thursday, December 13 at 11:00AM at St. Philips the Apostle in Occidental, CA, followed by a luncheon reception at the Union Hotel. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Godmothers of Timothy Murphy School for Boys in Annie’s name. It was her special cause.