2015 Grand Marshal
Herluf & Sharon Hansen
Herluf V. Hansen was born on July 23, 1943 to Einar and Agneta Hansen, in Fowler CA. He was the 4th child of 6, (3 boys and 3 girls). Herluf’s grandparents, Jacob and Jenny Hansen, migrated from Denmark in the late 1800’s to Ferndale CA. In 1908 they purchased 120 acs. on Nebraska and Marks avenues in Caruthers. In Oct. 1912 they moved their family from Ferridale to Caruthers to make their new home. In 1913 they bought the 80 acs. on West and Nebraska. Herluf and Sharon still farm the property on West and Nebraska along with their son Gerald.
Herluf graduated from Caruthers Elem. and Caruthers High school in 1961.ln Aug. of 1961, he went to work for Calif. Div. of Highways in Eureka CA. for 1 yr. as a surveyor before returning to Fresno State to study Civil Engineering in 1962. In summer of 1962 he went back to work for Div. of Highways and transferred to Dept of Water Resources and stayed with them until May of 1964, when he returned to the family farm to take over for his brother Herb who had been drafted into the Army. In June of 1964 Herluf was called for the draft. He was able to enlist in The Fresno Air National Guard and worked in Aero Ground Equipment shop for 6 years.
Herb and Herluf in1964 formed Hansen Bros. They started farming and doing commercial harvesting of cotton and blackeyed beans. Around 1976 they began to diversify their operation to include permanent crops of grapes and almonds, trucking/hauling, tractor rentals and field management for the next 40 years.
Sharon L. Iness was born on June 8, 1946 in Fowler CA and raised in the San Luis Obispo/Pismo Beach area. Her family moved back to Fresno when she was a teenager. Sharon graduated from Fresno High School in 1964 and enrolled at Frederico’s Beauty College. In the fall of 1964 Herluf met Sharon at Shakeys Pizza Parlor in Fresno. Sharon, not ever wanting to marry a farmer made Herluf a happy man by saying YES.
Herluf and Sharon were married on Sept. 7 1965 in Reno. NV. (50 years ago). Sharon received her cosmetology degree in Dec. 1965 and went to work for Irene’s Beauty Salon in Caruthers for several years. (She learned more about Caruthers in her first 3 months working as a beautician than Herluf knew growing up there.)
Herluf and Sharon purchased their first property on Marks Ave in Caruthers where they raised their 4 children Kristen, Sharon, Cheryl and Gerald. Sharon worked alongside Herluf chopping cotton, weeding blackeyed beans, changing water, picking grapes, tying vines, etc., until the children started going to school. She became very active in the school and the children’s activities, incl. PTA, room mother and being the classic soccer “MOM”. She took charge of the cheerleading squad for pee wee football (for 13 yrs.) when daughter Cheryl got involved as the team mascot. Sharon was one of the founders of the Caruthers District Womens League, a very active group that raised a lot of money for local projects including new band uniforms for the High School and fixing up downtown Caruthers with planting trees and painting store fronts. She along with Vicki Day chaired the Caruthers Community Basket program for many years.
Herluf was elected to Car. Fair Board in 1975-76. He was in charge of the food booths for most of his 21 yrs. on the board. He was also on the building committee to build the new commercial building in 1980. Sharon worked at the fair grounds along with Herluf and she saw the need for someone to help in the office and volunteered to help run the office and became the ” Voice ” of the fair for 20 + years. Herluf was elected to the Caruthers Elem. School board in Mar. 1975 for 13 yrs. He was then elected to the Caruthers High School Board for 8 more years. He has been an active member of Caruthers Lions Club since 1977. He was president in 1980-81 and Treasurer for 20+ years. He was also on the Fresno County Agriculture Stabilization Committee (ASC) for 12 years.Currently Sharon and Herluf are “semi” retired and busy making memories with their family and friends.
They have 10 grandchildren (7 grandsons and 3 granddaughters) ages 12-30 years old whom they love to spend as much time with as possible. They also love to travel and are current members of Caruthers Chamber of Commerce, Our Savior’s Lutheran Church, Sun Maid Raisin Growers Central Valley Almond Growers Assn.
We thank the Caruthers Fair Board and are very proud and humbled to be named Grand Marshall’s for 2015 Caruthers District Fair