Janet Guidotti passed away peacefully at home August 13, 2018 at the age of 94. Janet lived a lovely and full life. She was thankful to her family and many friends for a lifetime of happiness, companionship, and laughter. We all loved her dearly and will miss her in our lives. We will always have the life lessons she taught us: to be happy, resourceful, and hold relationships dear.
Janet Ailene Guidotti was born June 12, 1924 to Benedicto Rico and Laverne Sumner. She was born in Sydney, Australia because her parents were travelling with the orchestra in which her father played trombone. Her father died when she was only 3. Her mother remarried in later years to Carl Nealis and moved to Richmond. Janet was heavily influenced by her frugal grandmother, Mary Hummel, who raised her when her parents worked. They lived in San Francisco where Janet became friends with Phillip Guidotti from elementary school through high school. Janet attended Lowell High School, and then Cal Berkeley, and transferred to the University of New Mexico for health reasons. She had to leave school when her mother died and to help her step-father.
After the war she went to Seattle to visit her grandmother. Phil's ship was docked in town and when he was on leave he stayed with Janet's family for the holidays. Their relationship deepened and they were married in 1946 in San Francisco. They moved to the Russian River so Phil could work with his father, E.J. Nin Guidotti, in his real estate office in Guerneville. Phil and Janet became very active in the community, and Janet formed friendships and working relationships that would influence the social fabric of the River community for decades.
Son Jesse and daughter Gay were born in 1947 and 1955. As a young mother Janet was very active: in bridge club, Well Baby Clinic, Cancer Society, Guerneville School PTA, Boy Scouts, Camp Fire Girls, Fire Mountain Pageant, Stumptown Parades, the census, and finally working at the Guerneville Branch Library.
In the 26 years that she worked at the library, Janet sorted through thousands of historical pictures. She catalogued the photos related to Guerneville, and produced and narrated a CD called "Guerneville Treasures", which was a labor of love for this community.
Janet loved to travel, and her passion for it took her to 33 countries, starting with Australia. As much as she travelled she always returned and marveled at the beauty of home in Sonoma County and said, "Luther Burbank was right."
Family and friendships meant the most in life. Phil and Janet entertained almost every weekend with passion and graciousness, with great food, wine, and fun company. Janet was always the hostess with the mostest. Making everyone happy was her priority. She maintained her friendships from the start to the very end. She always greeted people with twinkling eyes, a big hello, and warm smile. "When you see a smile, just remember it's me looking down, loving you endlessly."
Janet is predeceased by her husband Phillip Guidotti (2013). Janet is survived by her son Jesse Guidotti, daughter Gay Guidotti (Don), grandchildren Angela Larkin (Kyle) and Ben Sinclair (Mia), great grandson Owen Larkin, sister-in-law Barbara Hodes, and nephews Bryan and Howard. At Janet's request, there will be no services. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to your charity of choice.