Our wonderful mother Janet Dowd entered the presence of the Lord on Saturday, June 23rd after a valiant nine-year battle with Alzheimer’s disease. She was 81 years old. Janet is preceded in death by her beloved husband Fran and her two sons, Joe and Jerry. She is survived by her three daughters and sons-in-law Lisa and Mitch Kaelin, Tracy and Mike Cooney, and Mary Jane and Tom Klope. She is deeply loved by her devoted grandchildren Laura, Allie, Aidan, Erin, Ryan, Lisa, Brian, Matthew, Corey and Amanda June. Her treasured friend and sister-in-law, Mary Kennedy, has been a special comfort to her.
Janet was born in Springfield, Massachusetts where she grew up very much at home in her Irish neighborhood. She attended Westfield State Teachers College and became a gifted and fun-loving teacher. She met the love of her life, Fran, in high school when she was just 16 years old. They later married and moved to Los Altos in 1963. They raised five children together and enjoyed 30 years of a loving marriage until Fran’s death in 1984. Since that time, she found her greatest blessing and satisfaction in her close relationship with her ten grandchildren.
Throughout the years, Janet’s devotion to her family, to God and to serving others made her an immeasurable blessing to all who had the privilege of knowing her. She was an avid and tireless volunteer, teaching Sunday school, serving with the El Camino Hospital Auxiliary and Chaplaincy, leading Camp Fire Girls and Cub Scout troops, working in every snack bar and fund raiser supporting her children’s schools and athletic pursuits, and serving in Bible Study Fellowship for over twenty years. She loved God and His Word and she represented Him well with her gracious, intelligent and enduring faith. Janet accepted life’s challenges with a grace that inspired us all. Even after suffering polio and the untimely losses of her husband and two sons, Janet maintained her joyful nature and impressive strength of character. Her positive attitude and delightful sense of humor never faltered, even throughout her illness.
A celebration of Janet’s life will take place at 1:00 p.m. on July 14th at Peninsula Bible Church in Palo Alto. In lieu of flowers, you may consider a donation in her name to Bible Study Fellowship at www.bsfinternational.org or to the Alzheimer’s Association at www.alz.org.