Gregory Thomas Vistica

Greg Vistica onlineOn December 16, 2019, Gregory Thomas Vistica, with family by his side, left this earth from his home in Los Altos Hills for his new home in Heaven.  Greg treasured his family, especially Margaret, his beloved wife of 70 years, his three daughters and their husbands, Diane Noriega (Bruce), Cynthia Vistica (Michael Barbieri), and Suzanne Demo (Thomas) and his four grandchildren and four great grandchildren.  Sharing repast with family and friends was also a great joy in his life.  Greg was born in Stockton, CA, to immigrant parents, Nicolina and Martin Vistica, from Yugoslavia and spoke Croatian to the very end.  When Greg was four years old, his pleasant life in Stockton became a very difficult one when his father died from health complications contracted while serving in WWI.  Greg’s young, widowed mother moved him and his sister, Anne, to Sunnyvale to live in the Libby’s Cannery Camp before settling into a relative’s home on Fremont Rd where Greg had to pick apricots and perform other jobs to buy his own shoes and necessities.

Owen “Bud” Elliott Pallakoff

Bud Pallakoff 122519 onlineSeptember 16, 1930 – November 17, 2019 Bud Pallakoff, beloved husband, father, grandfather & friend passed away at home surrounded by his children, at age 89. Born in 1930 in Kansas City, Missouri, Bud moved to Salinas, CA as a young boy. He started studying piano at age 10 with Leonard Cooper, who’s family is written about in Steinbeck’s Travels with Charley. He attended Salinas High School & earned bachelor and master degrees in electrical engineering from UC Berkeley. Bud & his wife Florence, who died last year, were married 62 years. They met at UC Berkeley when she sang songs in a college musical that Bud wrote & played. Their wedding was at the Claremont Hotel & they lived and raised their family in Los Altos. They are survived by daughters Pamela & Kathryn, son Mathew, his wife Kimberly & their children Daniel & Casey. Bud was lured into the field of microwaves & traveling-wave tubes (TWTs) by the writings of John Pierce of Bell Labs. He started his career at Varian Associates in 1956. He knew Sig & Russ Varian, who invented the klystron microwave tube; & Ed Ginzton, who developed the two mile linear accelerator at Stanford. Bud reminisced that the Varian brothers founded Varian to provide a working environment for creative scientists, not to make money.

Shirley Ann March

Shirley March 2 122519 onlineShirley Ann March, devoted mother of five and loving wife of Robert Sterling March, passed away peacefully in her home on February 27th 2019 at 8:25 p.m. with family by her side. Shirley went by the name of Shan and was survived by her four children Pamela, Cynthia (Cindy,) Philip, and Peter, daughters-in-law Katy, Nancee and Taisha, grandchildren Sabrina, Austin, RebShirley March 1 122519 onlineecca, Brandon, and great grandchild, Sawyer. She lost one son named Hollis on February 22, 2003 in Alameda, CA, her husband Bob on December 7, 1997, and her sister Jo Ellen Crankshaw October 5, 2018. Shirley was born in Kansas, January 29, 1930, to Willie Maude (Ragan) Young and Arthur Lewis Young, and grew up in Kansas and Oklahoma. She had many family ties to Arkansas, Baton Rouge, and particularly, Thibodaux, Louisiana.

She met Bob in Boston, MA, and after marrying, resided in Maryland, until she and Bob (a former attendee of Stanford University) moved to Sunnyvale in 1957, and then to Los Altos Hills in 1964. She graduated from University of Tulsa in Oklahoma in 1951. She was social chairman of Chi Omega, president of Future Teachers of America, secretary of Student Council, involved with Mortar Board, Who’s Who, TU “Y”, Botany Club, Board of Publications, Windbags, and Christian Science Organization.   Shan loved to hike at Hidden Villa in Los Altos Hills and enjoyed seeing the baby animals that were born every season. She also treasured the wildlife that lived in her own backyard including deer, rabbits, and birds. She was a vocal advocate for the local wildlife, and spoke out in support of humane backyard wildlife practices, such as keeping water available for the animals. She was an avid supporter of Hidden Villa, as well as other organizations, including humane societies in Palo Alto and Silicon Valley for homeless pets. Shan was not only a devoted mother but she also ran her own successful real estate business as a broker/owner of Shan March Properties in Los Altos Hills for many years.

Bert George Hickman, Jr.

Bert G. Hickman online 121119October 6, 1924 – November 23, 2019 Dr. Bert G. Hickman, Stanford University Professor Emeritus of Economics, loving husband, father and grandfather, passed away peacefully surrounded by family in Palo Alto on November 23, 2019. Dr. Hickman was born in Los Angeles, CA on October 6, 1924 to Bert George Hickman, Sr. and Caroline Elizabeth (Douglas) Hickman. He graduated with a Ph.D in Economics from the University of California, Berkeley in 1951. From 1954-1965, he served on President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s Council of Economic Advisors and was a member of Senior Staff at the Brookings Institute from 1958-1966. He joined the Department of Economics at Stanford University in 1966 where he served as Department Chairman from 1975-1978. In 1969, Dr. Hickman co-founded and served as Chairman of Project LINK, a continuing international collaborative research group for econometric modelling sponsored by the United Nation’s Department of Economic and Social Affairs. He retired from Stanford in 1996 as Professor Emeritus of Economics.

Adele Van Straaten

Adele Van Straaten online 121119Adele Van Straaten passed away November 3, 2019 in Cameron Park, CA with her three daughters by her side. She was 90 years of age. Born July 23, 1929 in San Francisco, CA Adele was orphaned as a baby. She was raised by her maternal Grandmother until age 8, when her grandmother passed. Adele then lived with her uncle, George and Anita Carroll. In 1949 she married C.N. “Neil” Van Straaten and moved to Los Altos. They raised their daughters in the house that Neil built for her on Gordon Way. After Neil’s passing in November 2012, she moved to assisted living in Cameron Park, but her heart never left Los Altos. Adele is predeceased by her husband Neil. She is survived by her daughters, Sharon(Kevin) Ellsworth, Sandra Mitro and Linda Mosto. She was “Nanny” to 7 grandchildren, 4 great grandchildren and 2 great great grandchildren. Also survived by her beloved dog, Dutchess. Family services were held at Gate of Heaven Cemetery. From our hearts to God’s arms. We love you Mommy

JoAnne Connelly

JoAnne Connelly passed away peacefully at her home in Los Altos on October 21, 2019. She was 75 years old. Born in 1944, she grew up in Joliet, Illinois, and graduated from Joliet Township High School in 1962. She attended Purdue University, graduating with degrees in French and Humanities. After college, she moved to Chicago, working in the nascent computer industry. In 1967 she married her high school sweetheart Thomas G Connelly, and they moved to Tennessee while he pursued post-graduate work at Oak Ridge. They traveled extensively during this period, living briefly in Bermuda and Puerto Rico. By 1970, they settled in Ann Arbor, where Tom taught at the University of Michigan, and JoAnne did freelance work in education, later starting her own small-scale bakery. In 1990, with two teenage sons in tow, they moved to Sunnyvale. JoAnne worked in the Economics department at Stanford, and Tom eventually become the CEO of a company which manufactured scientific instruments. Tom succumbed to Parkinson’s Disease in 2015. Always an avid cyclist and gardener, JoAnne enjoyed the outdoors. As an active member of the Los Altos Garden Club, she loved cultivating and experimenting with different varieties of roses. She is survived by her two sons. Donations in her memory may be made to the Los Altos Garden Club.

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