Francis "Paco" Dreher

September 4, 1946 - September 20, 2018
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It is with a heavy heart we announce the passing of Francis (Paco) Dreher on September 20, 2018, at UCSF Hospital in San Francisco, California.  Paco’s family and friends were with him as he passed, and they will forever be grateful they were a part of his life. He was 72 years old.

Paco was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1946.  He was the second of four sons born to Francis and Winifred Dreher. He was a loving husband, devoted father, beloved brother, uncle, nephew, cousin and friend.  Paco was cherished by all who knew him.

During his lifetime, he made pizzas, hung sheet rock, was a soldier, a teacher, a mentor, and a psychotherapist. He was an international traveler and taught hypnotherapy classes in Mexico, Switzerland, and Germany as well as in the Bay Area.

Paco loved learning and thrived in school.  He was attending Portland State University in Oregon when his education was interrupted by the Vietnam War.  He served proudly in the United States Army and is a Vietnam Veteran.  After the war, he returned home and resumed his education, completing a B.A. in Psychology at Portland State University.  Paco then moved to the Bay Area to attend JFK University and graduated with an M.A. in Clinical Psychology.  Paco later attended Argosy University where he was awarded a PhD in Psychology in June 1997.

Paco met Hilda Goldman while attending a Postmaster Certificate Program at JFK University in Orinda, California.  He was immediately smitten and knew he had met the woman he had been looking for all his life.  Paco and Hilda married in spring of 1988 in Belmont, CA.  Paco adored Hilda and thought he could love no other, until their daughter, Anna Gilda Dreher, was born.  He cherished his Anna, and spent a big part of his life loving, teaching, and guiding her.  He passed knowing Anna was independent, strong, capable, and compassionate.   She is fearless — just like her father.

Paco had a private psychotherapy practice for 32 years. He studied and trained deeply in Ericksonian hypnotherapy, and never stopped reading, studying and learning. He was a gifted hypnotherapist and touched many lives with his skillful, sensitive, yet down-to-earth, work.  He had a deep and lasting impact on those who worked with him.

Paco also served as a Founding Member and Board Member of Gomde California, a Buddhist retreat center in northern California. Paco served for ten years as the Director of Gomde, California where he did a tremendous amount of hard work to bring the community together in harmony, and to make the land and buildings habitable. He brought his strong presence, warmth, humor and immense patience to everything he did for the center.

He is survived by his wife, Hilda Goldman; daughter, Anna Dreher; brothers, John Dreher, David Dreher and Kevin Dreher; aunts, Muriel Jensen and Mary Schroeder; mother-in-law, Helen Goldman; brother-in-law’s, Nathan Goldman and Shyam Paryani; sister-in-law’s, Diane Goldman, Sharon Paryani, Patty Dreher and Cynthia Dreher; and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.

He will be remembered for his humor, his generosity, and his big heart.  He is missed.

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Service Schedule

Service Information

Date: Sunday, October 14, 2018

Time: 1:00 pm

Sunset View Mortuary


101 Colusa Ave, El Cerrito, CA, 94530

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Reception Information

Date: Sunday, October 14, 2018

Time: 2:00 pm - 5:30 pm

Sunset View Mortuary


101 Colusa Ave, El Cerrito, CA, 94530

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Timeline for Francis "Paco" Dreher

Born: September 4, 1946
Died: September 20, 2018

Condolences for Francis “Paco” Dreher

Sunset View Mortuary

Our sincere condolences.

The staff of Sunset View Mortuary.


Ross Grossman posted on 12/31/18

Francis, "Paco" was an enormous part of my life. I came to him as a late teen for help figuring out my life path and he took me on,with all of my challenges, and difficulties, as his client. We worked together on and off for 10 years. He was endlessly patient, compassionate, kind, thoughtful. In many ways, I felt towards Francis that he was my surrogate father, helping to 'reparent' me in a way that I had missed. His skillful use of hypnotherapy helped me to discover my strengths, my potential, and a deep well of self-acceptance. I am so saddened to learn of his passing. He truly made a HUGE impact on my life and I will miss him terribly. PS I am a therapist today, due in great part to Paco's guidance and belief in my abilities. Anyone who wants to talk with me about Francis, I'd feel so grateful to hear how he touched other's lives... Very sad today...and grateful for the chance to meet someone so special.


Laura Kyropoulos posted on 10/3/18

Frances was perhaps one of the most influential and unforgettable people in my life. His laughter, joy and compassion will be with me always. He was a consummate professional. I'm so very sorry for your immense loss and hold you in my heart.