Shirley Santos

Obituary
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Photo Shirley J. Santos Wife Friend Mother Her laugh, Her Smile Shirley Jane Santos aged 75, of South San Francisco died at home on Thanksgiving evening November 24, 2011, Fausto (Ed) Santos, her other half, was at her side with her hand in his. Shirley was surrounded with the Love and Peace of all of her children Laura, Marc (Pon), Eddie, Stacie and Scott "Santos" her grandchildren Veronica (Martinez) and Aris Sarantakos, Jake Santos-Taylor and Amara Santos as well as close family members. A private viewing was held for Shirley's husband, Fausto Santos on Nov 27, 2011 at Skylawn. Shirley was born to Juanita Vera (Welch) and Ray Holt Vinson on July 12, 1935 in Madera, CA. She was raised in the beautiful city she Loved, San Francisco, with her sister, cousin and many aunts. She attended Mission High School. Shirley and Fausto were married on January 2, 1960, the couple began their lives as one in North Beach. Together with family and friends they celebrated their Golden Anniversary on January 2, 2010. During the 60's she worked for S.F. dress designer Emma Domb. In 1969 Shirley and Fausto moved their young family from San Francisco to the Peninsula. Shirley fit in quickly, she began as a volunteer in the 70's at Los Cerritos Elementary School, in the classroom and the School Library. Shirley was a familiar face on the playground, you may remember her as your favorite yard duty teacher, often with students gathered around her during lunch recess. Shirley was active with both the Boy and Girl Scouts of America and was Brownie Troop Leader. Once her youngest child started school, Shirley began work with Cal Water. The girls at the office were like a family, while each of them was raising their own families they formed lasting friendships and in retirement began spending time once again through the South San Francisco Women's Club, where they were members. Shirley was a member of the Masters Swim Program at Orange Park, and swam daily for many years during the 80's. After retiring from Cal Water in 1997 Shirley and husband Fausto (retired teamster) started their own company "My Dispatch" and enjoyed the trade show business and all the new friendships it brought. Shirley enjoyed LIFE, riding roller coasters, participating in Bay to Breakers with her husband, watching and VOTING for her fav American Idol, but nothing brought her more excitement than rooting for her beloved San Francisco Giants! Shirley is a great lover of music, among her favorites are Andy Williams, Neal Diamond, Michael Buble and Lady Gaga. She loved traveling seeing such places as Europe, New Mexico to see the Hot Air Balloon Festival, New Orleans, Mexico City for a family vacation in 1979 and Italy where a special trip was made for a reunion with Italian exchange student Stefano. He came to stay with the Santos family in the 70's through the Sister Cities Program from Lucca, the two kept in contact throughout her life. Shirley always made time to send a thoughtful note, remembering birthdays, to keep in touch or a reminder you were in her thoughts. Shirley especially loved her many trips to New York with husband Fausto, in recent years to spend time with her grand-daughter and grand-son in law. Manhattan was one of her favorites. Shirley leaves behind sister Annette Vinson, Son-In-Law Pete Martinez, Grandchildren Edward, Cynthia, Justin, Katie, Fernanda, Severo, Mark James, as well as great grandchildren, Brothers-in-Law Joe Santos, Robert Guerrerro II, and many cousins. Shirley will be rejoined with her best friend for 60 years, Claudia Bourdieu, stepson Fausto Jr., sister in law Sylvia Walker and the many loved ones both relatives and friends. A Very Special thank you to SF Kaiser Hospice and Val and Lalo Vega for providing the support and guidance that allowed Shirley's family to be at her side for this beautiful journey. The Santos Family will be Honoring Shirley with a memorial "Celebration of ife", inviting all who have been touched by her, this Wednesday December 21st, Elks Lodge, 920 Stonegate Dr. SSF, 4pm -10pm. A Mother to all, She Never Forgot Anyone.
Published in San Francisco Chronicle from Dec. 18 to Dec. 20, 2011
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