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Janet M. Simonian

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Janet M. Simonian Obituary
Janet M. Simonian

Janet M. (Rinella) Simonian, a life-long resident of Long Beach, passed away on Tuesday, December 19, 2017, after a long illness.

Jan spent more than 35 years in the fashion business, beginning as a model and later transitioning into teaching and fashion marketing. She married Dr. Ralph Simonian in 1966 and, in addition to raising five children, working, and devoting time to local charities, Jan and Ralph developed a passion for traveling.

Jan was born July 16, 1928, to Glen and Bonita Hammond. She attended Poly High School and developed a passion for modeling and fashion at a young age. She continued working after her first marriage and in the 1950s she became the most stylish working mother in the neighborhood. In addition to appearing in local fashion shows, she taught modeling, manners and style to local teens, including the wives and daughters of servicemen at the Long Beach Naval Base.

In her work as a fashion coordinator, she created memorable runway fashion shows for department stores, restaurants, and charities all over Southern California from the 1960s to the 1980s.

During that time, she and Ralph also traveled throughout the United States, Mexico, Europe, China, Australia, and New Zealand, often with friends from Long Beach. They also made friends from around the world, many of whom later visited them in Long Beach.

Jan is survived by her beloved husband, Ralph; brother and sister-in-law George and Joyce Hammond; daughter and son-in-law Kristine and Eugene Brancolini; daughter Lita Orpitelli; step-son Randy Simonian; five grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

Funeral services and a celebration of Jan's life will be held on Saturday, January 6, 2018, at 2:00 p.m., at the Church of Our Fathers at Forest Lawn, Cypress, CA, with burial and a reception to follow. We invite Jan and Ralph's friends to join us.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Alzheimer's research at the Bright Focus Foundation (www.brightfocus.org) or the Alzheimer's Foundation of America (https://alzfdn.org/support-us/donate). Jan suffered from the debilitating effects of Alzheimer's for more than a decade, but she maintained her famous zest for life. Please sign the guest book, www.presstelegram.com/obits.
Published in the Long Beach Press-Telegram from Dec. 28 to Dec. 30, 2017
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