Lise Sonnen, passed away with her two daughters, Susanne Lamelza and Charlotte Vogt, by her side, in her Sonoma home, on May 5, 2012.
Lise was an established, and successful business woman, the owner of Sonnen BMW, located in San Rafael, for almost 40 years, delving into other successful business ventures along the way.
She had a natural-born business tenacity from very early on, being the first female owner, and operator, at the age of 19, of an International Travel Agency, in Copenhagen, Denmark, the place of her birth. After much travel, success and college, Lise moved to Marin County, when she was 24 and started on a life’s journey which would become more than just a legacy.
Lise was loved by all who knew her. She was kind, gracious, and, if you were lucky enough to hear one of her speeches, you would have laughed from beginning to end, as she had an incredible sense of humor.
Something that was so very important to Lise, and a huge part of her life, was what she liked to call “giving back to the community.” Her generosity, which was the blood that pumped through her heart, came in many forms – the valuable gift of time, sitting on many boards to endless charity functions. Her memberships in the many Chambers of Commerce and her dedication to different Rotary clubs. You name it, she was “the one” to complete any and all tasks to better the world. There are so many organizations that she was involved in, far too many to mention here. So to share a few: “Guide Dogs for the Blind,” “Special Olympics,” “Charter School of Sonoma,” “The Divas.” And oh yes!, “The Boys & Girls Club” for Lise this was about giving children possibilities that could change their lives forever, she was so very passionate about this.
Lise had a huge love of animals, and they all loved her back, she had always talked about opening a ranch for dogs that needed a home and love. Her beloved goldens “Lulu” and “Baby” never left her side and gave her much comfort and joy.
Her awards were numerous and she appreciated each and every one of them more than anyone could ever have guessed, but being modest, she always thought that someone else deserved it more. In the end she was voted the “Sweetheart” to the Boys & Girls Club for 2012, which touched her in the deepest way.
She will be sorely missed in every way. But will live on forever, as she touched countless hearts every single day.
Lise is survived by her two daughters, Susanne Lamelza and Charlotte Vogt; step- and spirit-daughter, Michelle Fliegauf; daughter-in-heart, Amy Hutchinson; the son “I never had”-in-law, Allan Vogt; her granddaughters and step-grandson; Sarah Prinzlau, Emily Lamelza, Lilly Lamelza, Sophia Vogt and Arlo Fliegauf, and two great-grandchildren; Elli and DJ Heffelfinger; as well as her sister, Thyme Møgelberg, who resides in Denmark.
We have decided, as a family, to, at this time, have a private “Celebration of her Life,” we know you understand, in this hardest of times. Thank you for all your thoughts and prayers, each one makes a difference.
Please light a candle and have a glass of wine in her memory, she would have liked that.
In lieu of flowers please make a donation to “The Boys & Girls Club” or “Pets Lifeline” both located in Sonoma.
We love you Mom.
Duggan’s Mission Chapel.
Mission Cremation Service
525 W. Napa St.
Sonoma, CA 95476