John Lejardi died on November 13, 2020 at the age of 98. Born in Boise, Idaho to Pedro and Petra, Basque immigrants from Spain, he was the youngest of four children. During college, he obtained his private pilot’s license and then enlisted in the US Army Air Corp during WW II, serving from 1943-1946. After the war, he finished earning his Business Administration degree from the University of Portland and then obtained his MBA from Stanford University in 1949. At the Catholic Newman Club on campus, he met the love of his life, Florence, a feisty Italian, who was earning her teaching credential and studying music. In 1952, they married and settled in Los Altos, where they raised three children. John worked as a CPA for his entire career. John loved the outdoors, and taking his family on camping, fly- fishing and skiing trips. The life of the party with a great sense of humor, he enjoyed dancing, singing, hosting barbeques, playing cards, and making his signature sherry flips for holidays. After retirement, he and Florence traveled extensively throughout Europe, Canada and the US. He cherished his role as “Gpa” (short for Grandpa) and had just as much fun as his grandsons, whether camping or taking them trick or treating. John became a most amazing caregiver for Florence in her last years. After she died in 2010, he joined the gym at 88 and worked out regularly until 95.
Not one to sit around, he flyfished until he was 92. In 2015, tired of living alone, he moved into Carlton Senior Living in Davis. He enjoyed the activities, the residents and especially the caring staff, who on occasion danced with him. Until the end, he enjoyed being the Domino Champ, picnicking in the park, and savoring desserts and ice cream. John was devoted to his Catholic faith, family, friends and fly-fishing. He was an optimist and always grateful for everything he had in life. As he often said, “I’ve had a good life and a lot of luck in it.” He is survived by his children, Mark, Jeannette and Denise, and two grandsons, Christopher and Brenden Sawyer. The family would like to thank the Carlton Staff for their outstanding care of John.