It is with the deepest sadness that the family of Newton Russell announces the passing of our adored and greatly loved husband, father, and grandfather (Pop Pop). He fought a difficult and courageous battle against lung cancer. He went home to be with his Lord and Savior on Saturday, May 18. His family was with him in his home during the last difficult days and final hours.

He was a fifth generation Californian, a Naval Veteran and USC alumnus. He served on the California State Legislature for 28 years and retired from the Senate in 1996 with the honorable title of “the conscience of the senate.” He maintained a full and active schedule serving on numerous boards and committees, traveling and enjoying to the fullest his wonderful family and extensive circle of friends.

His love of history, politics, and sports always made for great and fun filled conversations. His love of God was paramount and his devotion to his country was evident to everyone who knew him. He was strong, courageous, funny, and loyal. He was a great listener, a model to all who knew him, had a laugh like no other, and a whistle to beat all! His strong values and morals left an indelible imprint on many, but especially on the ones closest to him.

Words cannot begin to express how much he will be missed. We are so fortunate and blessed to have had him in our lives and as the head of our family.

He leaves his wife Diane, their three children: Steven Russell, Sherry and Louis Sclafani, Julie Gans; eight grandchildren: Matthew and Natalie Sclafani, Patrick Sclafani, Grant Sclafani, Leigh Sclafani, Amy Gans, Andrew Gans, and Emily Gans. They were all his heartbeat.

Services will be for the family only. A memorial gathering for friends will be held at a later date.