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Helene Kaufmann


1935 - 2018 Obituary Condolences
Helene Joan Kaufmann

Nov. 29, 1935 - Aug. 6, 2018

A Tribute to a Lady
Joan passed away on Monday, August 6, 2018 after surgery. She was 82 years old. She is survived by her ever-loving husband Paul who was at her side when she passed. On July 11, 2018 they celebrated their 59th wedding anniversary. Joan is also survived by her devoted grandchildren, Ashley and Alexa Griffith. Both her son Mark and daughter Lynn predeceased her.
She is also survived by her brother John O'Shaughnessy and his children John (Julie) and Kelly (Scott) O'Shaughnessy and their children.
Joan graduated from St. Mary's High School in Manhasset, Long Island, New York in 1953. She then graduated in 1957 from Mary Washington University in Virginia with a Bachelor's Degree in Economics. She met Paul in New York City while working as an economist at Morgan Guaranty Bank. Paul had newly graduated from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy and was stationed aboard ship on Staten Island, New York. They married one year later. After completing military service, Paul attended Stanford Business School, while Joan worked as an economist at Stanford Research Institute in the Long Range Planning Department.
After graduation from Stanford, Paul entered the corporate life in San Francisco. Joan and Paul moved several times while pursuing his career. They finally settled in Danville, CA in 1973.
Joan was active in every aspect of her children's lives. She was President of the PTA both in Elementary School and High School. She spent countless hours at swim meets and dance rehearsals. She loved music and was a trained concert pianist. She loved to travel and traveled to Europe over 35 times. The family owned a house in Vence, in the South of France. She loved Ireland and stopped there on the way to Europe to enjoy her heritage and play golf. There were also many trips with the children to Hawaii and bare boating in the Caribbean with friends. The and family owned a sailboat and sailed often in San Francisco Bay.
Joan loved to entertain and was a wonderful cook and hostess. One of her favorite past times was playing bridge with multiple groups of friends. She loved volunteering at Assistance League of Diablo Valley where she was Treasurer for years and volunteered at the Thrift Shop in Lafayette for over 40 years.
Joan actively participated in Paul's career, first in the corporate world, and then in many of the businesses they started together. She contributed to business planning and offered wise counsel along the way.
Joan would want us to rejoice in our having had the opportunity to know her. Paul will never have such a great friend and partner in life.
She was a consummate Lady!

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Published in San Francisco Chronicle from Aug. 11 to Aug. 13, 2018
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