Lois Noel, a longtime resident of Los Altos Hills and wife of former Cupertino mayor Clyde Noel, died Sept. 27, just three months after her husband’s death. Mrs. Noel was 95.
Mrs. Noel, a native of Philadelphia, was born Lois Peck to a banker father, William, and mother, Anna. She had a middle-class upbringing with two sisters. A no-nonsense personality, she nonetheless exhibited a sense of fun throughout her life through her love of dancing, travel, gardening, cooking and hosting parties for family and friends.
“She was very artistic and stylish – one of those people who could put anything together and make it look good,” said her daughter, Candie. “Her high school art teacher wanted her to go to art school. Lacking money, she went to secretarial school instead. As a child, I remember her doing the paint-by-number oil paintings, many of which are hanging on the walls of her house.”
She met Clyde, who was serving in the U.S. Navy during World War II, on a double date with her sister Jan. They wed in 1944 and were married 74 1/2 years until his death on June 21.
For Mrs. Noel, family was important.
“She was very devoted to her family and the importance of family,” Candie said.
“Supportive” was the word that immediately came to mind when Candie and Mrs. Noel’s son Len were describing their mother.
“She was always there for you,” Len said. “She taught you to speak your mind.”
“She was very good at keeping friends,” Candie added. “Although quite shy, when she made friends with you, you were her friend forever. She had very strong friendships and kept in touch with high school friends, even children of her friends, and even when they were on separate ends of the United States.”
Any holiday was an excuse to decorate and celebrate, particularly Christmas, Candie and Len recalled.
Cooking, specifically French cuisine, “became her passion,” according to Candie.
Being married to a traveling sporting goods salesman had Mrs. Noel and the children often on the go, combining summer vacations and business trips with stops all over the western United States. Later on, the Noels enjoyed trips to Europe and, closer to home, visits to local wineries.
Changing times did not prompt Mrs. Noel to alter a pleasant lifestyle filled with simple joys, such as sitting with her husband in the backyard of their home, watching the deer and rabbits eat away at the grass.
“She never touched a computer in her life,” Candie said. “And she was proud of it.”
In addition to Candie and Len, Mrs. Noel is survived by grandchildren Adam, Eric and Hanna; two great-grandchildren; and a niece, Patricia Churchill, of Pennsylvania. The family will hold a private service.