Jean Marie Boitano Burke
1929 - 2021
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Jean Marie Boitano Burke
May 26, 1929 - January 15, 2021
Redlands, CA
Jean Marie Boitano Burke passed away in Redlands, California from Covid-19 at the age of 91.
Jean was born in San Jose, California, on May 26, 1929 to Angelo and Anna Boitano. She grew up in San Jose and graduated from Notre Dame High School. She was also a graduate of the College of Notre Dame in Belmont, California.
After college, she attended the O'Connor Hospital School of Nursing in San Jose and graduated as a registered nurse. She began her career at O'Connor Hospital, then left to work for a year at the hospital in the Panama Canal Zone. When she returned to San Jose, she worked for several years for an ophthalmology group before joining the U.S. Air Force and serving as a nurse at duty stations in Alabama, Florida, the Philippines, California, and Turkey. While in the military, she met Gene Burke, who worked for the Service to the Armed Forces Division of the American Red Cross. After they were married in Germany, Jean devoted herself to raising their daughters and making a home as the family moved to locations in Maryland, California, Missouri, and Japan for Gene's work. After Gene retired, they moved to San Bernardino, California where Gene passed away a few years later, and for the last three years of her life, Jean lived in a retirement community in Redlands, California.
Jean was a talented cook, a fearless traveler, a proud veteran, and a caring nurse. She was full of life and love. To her children, she was a wonderful mother, and to her grandchildren, a loving Nonna. She had an infectious laugh and the beautiful habit of giving you her full attention when you spoke. Family meant everything to her and some of her fondest memories were of gatherings at her family's cabin in the mountains.
Jean is survived by her daughters and their husbands, Kathryn Burke & Greg Adams and Patricia & Sam Wilson, her four grandchildren, Adam, Nicholas, Rachel, and Stephen, her brother and his wife, Bob & Nancy Boitano, her nieces and nephew and their families, and many beloved cousins.
She was laid to rest at Santa Clara Mission Cemetery, in Santa Clara, California. A Memorial Mass will be held at a later date, when it is safe to gather.
As an Italian mother and grandmother, cooking for and feeding others was one of the ways Jean expressed her love. Accordingly, in lieu of flowers, donations can be made in her memory to any local food bank or organization that fights hunger. Jean's story is also on the Lima website below.

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Published in San Jose Mercury News/San Mateo County Times on Apr. 18, 2021.
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