John Dennis Wolfe was bigger than life. He had wide-ranging interests and could talk at length on any topic a listener might bring up. He had strong opinions and wasn’t shy about sharing them. He loved politics and was passionate in his political beliefs.Dennis was born to John James and Margaret Virginia Wolfe on April 12, 1952 in Los Angeles. After graduating from San Jose State University in 1976 with a major in finance and a minor in organic chemistry, he started Wolfe Insurance Services. He originated the idea of health fairs in shopping malls for which he received an award from the National Association of Life Underwriters.By his own account, Wolfe was instrumental in saving the USO of Northern California from insolvency, turning it into a profitable entity that still supports our troops as they travel through the San Francisco Bay Area. He graduated from the Santa Clara Citizen Police Academy, served two terms on the Alameda County Grand Jury and chaired Fremont’s Charter Committee. He was active in Kiwanis and once served as their Lt. Governor over California, Nevada and Hawaii.

“Dennis had a passion for life and a love for others,” said a close friend, Alan Olsen. “We met in the early 1990’s when he organized the Fremont Ducks for Bucks race as a member of the Fremont Kiwanis Club. When he set his sight on a goal, no obstacle would stop him. I was so impressed with his leadership skills. He got the whole community involved. Ducks for Bucks has raised thousands of dollars for community charities during the last twenty years.”

Wolfe and Olsen attended the World Congress of Families in Geneva, Switzerland in 1999. There, along with delegates from seventy other countries, they helped draft a charter on the importance of the natural family as the fundamental unit of society, which was presented to the United Nations.

“Although Dennis never had children of his own, my kids accepted him as a fatherly figure,” recalled Olsen. “He would take them to ball games, give them advice on career choices, and encourage them to do their best in life.”

Wolfe enjoyed inventing things and starting businesses. Because of his love of music, he founded Ossum Possum Records in 1990. He later wrote that the company’s achievements were “ossum indeed!” He sold it to a longtime friend, Kevin Casey, who posted a Facebook comment, ” A very sad day as news has been confirmed

[that] J. Dennis Wolfe, the original founder of Ossum Possum Records, passed away Friday due to a sudden heart attack. His wisdom, knowledge & wit will be missed. We hope to continue making great music in his legacy.”

For a short time he co-hosted a local TV show called “Covalt and Wolfe…due to technical difficulties” which discussed hot political issues at local, state and national levels. After Covalt’s death, Wolfe had a radio show. In 2007 he published a book, “The Sick Solution – A Prescription for National Health.” He was a gifted writer and recently had outlined and begun to write a political novel.

“Dennis had a big heart,” observed a friend, Tim Gavin, “He had lots of great ideas. His death is a reminder that all the big issues in life are not going to be solved our lifetimes.”

Wolfe is survived by his wife, Noriko, his stepdaughter, Lydia Miles, her children, Mio Cecelia and Regina Cecelia and by his stepfather, Walter Penkor.

Written by Lila Bringhurst
November 21, 2014