Kory William Hansen of Brentwood, Calif., died Wednesday, Aug. 5. He was 58. A
Fresno, Calif., native, Kory developed a love for heavy metal music and street art in high
school that inspired him to study photography at Fresno State University. He put himself
through college working with a roaming night office janitorial crew.
After a stint as a photojournalist at the Clovis Independent, Kory landed at the The
Gilroy Dispatch in Gilroy, Calif., where his people skills made him a sought-after
photographer for the staff’s favorite Minute Interviews. While there, he developed an
affinity for grilling and workplace spy thrillers. He also met his beloved wife Tammy, a
reporter at the newspaper, and asked her to move in with him the day he met her. In the
blossoming digital age, Kory was the founding graphics editor at The Dispatch, and became
a prolific and prodigious mapmaker. Thereafter, he served as graphics artist or editor/page
designer at several Bay Area and Valley institutions, including The Tri-Valley Herald/Bay
Area News Group, Stockton Record, and most recently the family-owned McClatchy chain.
Throughout his decades-long career, Kory collected lifelong friends in the industry, who
would often make a Big Show of welcoming him to new settings.
Kory was a six-time community high-stakes poker champion. He was an integral
member of The Fetzer Lane Weekend Stroll and Share, where his leadership during the
birthday snipe hunt is still fondly remembered. He was an avid Oakland A’s fan and season
ticket holder with his brother Kevin. Baseball cards and fantasy leagues were in the mix, as
were Lego kits and tastefully humorous online chats with beloved friends. Also, cat photos.
Kory is survived by his wife of 30 years, Tammy Burnett Hansen, and two sons; Jake,
26, and Nick, 18. They were his raison d’etre. He is also survived by his brother Kevin
Hansen and sister-in-law Clare Peterson Hansen. He will forever be the favorite son-in-law
of Ken and Karen Burnett. Kory was preceded in death by his parents, Ken and Karen
In the ever-shrinking newspaper industry, Kory will be remembered by dozens of
co-workers as a kind person and diligent journalist. HIs friends remember him as a devoted
family man who was always willing to lend a hand.
A private family viewing was held Aug. 7 at Higgins Chapel in Antioch, Calif. The
Hansen family encourages friends, in these strange times, to celebrate Kory with joyful
memories and perhaps a rum and Diet Coke.
The family asks that any donations be made to Diablo Meals on Wheels, where Kory volunteered
( https://www.mowdiabloregion.org/donate ) . Donations to the A’s Community Fund
( https://www.mlb.com/athletics/community/mission-statement ) would also be
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