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Janice Elizabeth Rossi 1913-2012 Janice Elizabeth (Leicester) Rossi passed away March 21, in the home she so dearly loved, designed and built in 1949-1951 by her beloved, pre-deceased husband, George J. Rossi, Architect. Her Family saw to it that her request to stay in the home until the end was honored. Janice was born in Canada, raised in Chicago and attended Northwestern University on a journalism scholarship. Janice followed her Father to Hollywood after leaving Chicago. Her Father later introduced her to George Rossi while she was attending Cal Berkeley. She encouraged George's passion to see architecture around the world. They traveled to all of Western Europe, the Middle East, India Thailand, Japan, Canada, Mexico and most of the United States. She was a champion of Community involvement, major associations included: "Pals for Palsy" (created and named by Janice); Peninsula Children's Theatre (founding member/wrote plays and song lyrics); Mission Hospice; KCSM-TV (associated mostly with writing for show "Legal Currents") and recognized as "stellar volunteer" for 15 years service (past the age of 90); Hillsborough Schools Foundation; founding member of Hillsborough Concours D'Elegance; "Beyond war"; Hillbarn Theatre ("Bravo Award" winner); Johnston House Foundation of Half Moon Bay; and Sustainable San Mateo County, among others. She was on the Board of Directors, Chairwoman and/or President of several of the above at one time or another. Her love for the theatre was "in her blood". Her mother, Janice E. Tate Leicester performed in silent movies, her father Robert W. Leicester was a scenic artist ("the Wizard Of Oz"), her younger brother William F Leicester was a movie/television actor and writer, and older brother Robert T. Leicester was an educator who participated in local and regional theatre. Janice performed in theatre while living in Portland, Oregon (Portland Civic Light Opera) and while living in Hillsborough ("The Millbrae Players"). She was perhaps most proud of attending in 1993 (age 80), an Oxford/Berkeley summer course in London ("Writers and Their Craft"). Janice has been variously described by Family and friends as "spirited, unique, outspoken, witty ("dying is not an option"), dedicated, hard-working, committed, open minded and ahead of her time". Her self-described skills were: "survival tactics". She listed hobbies as "people and commitments" and Yoga. Janice was pre-deceased by her adored daughter, Janice E. Barber. She is survived by her sons, Robert H. Rossi (Karen) of Sacramento and William F Rossi (Marilee) of Woodside, five grandchildren: Edward Barber, Janice Crosby, Marc Rossi, Steven Rossi, Nathaniel Rossi and five great-grandchildren: Carson Crosby, Sawyer Crosby, Holland Crosby, Angelina Rossi and Dane Rossi. The Family will forever be grateful to her caregiver of four years, Estella Meier. She will be missed by all who knew her. A private gathering of Family and friends was held in celebration of Janice's life on May 19, 2012. In lieu of flowers, please make any donations to: "Pals For Palsy", Mission Hospice, Theatre, Hillbarn Theatre or the Johnston House Foundation.
Published in San Francisco Chronicle on June 3, 2012
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