Anna L. Ber­nadi­cou

1923-2019

San Francisco Chronicle - Late Edition (Sunday) - - LIFETRIBUTES -

Our beloved Tan­tine (French for Aunt) left us to be re­united with her sis­ter Jean­nette Palacin on Jan­uary 4, 2019. The two in­sep­a­ra­ble sis­ters were ev­ery­thing to each other hav­ing lost their mother, Madeleine Lilles Ber­nadi­cou, to tu­ber­cu­lo­sis when Anna was less than two years old and Jean­nette was nine. Jean­nette’s hus­band, Ray­mond Palacin, was cer­tainly along­side to greet her. It was a love fest, the three of them. On hand as well would also be Anna’s father Cal­ixte Ber­nadi­cou, who adored his two daugh­ters and they him.

Tan­tine will be greatly missed by her two nieces, Terry Nor­ton and Madeleine Palacin, Terry’s hus­band Den­nis Nor­ton, Tante’s great niece and nephew Erin Nor­ton Far­ber and Casey Nor­ton along with their spouses Todd Far­ber and Sara Huck­abone, and the great-greats—Ryan Far­ber, Sa­man­tha Far­ber and Shasta Nor­ton.

Af­ter grad­u­at­ing from Galileo High School, Anna ap­plied for a job at Mat­son Ship­ping Lines where she told her in­ter­viewer, “I’d like to stay here a while.” She re­tired 46 years later with a cadre of fab­u­lous girl­friends and ma­rine per­son­nel hires as her life­long friends. She was one of “Mat­son Busi­ness Girls,” a beloved mem­ber of the Ma­rine Per­son­nel team who hired the sea go­ing per­son­nel. The com­pany de­scribed her as “one of the most pop­u­lar girls around Mat­son . . . a warm link be­tween the Nav­i­ga­tion Com­pany ashore and the peo­ple who sail the ships.”

At Mat­son Anna made life­long friends--Muriel Pen­field, Lau­rel Gil­bert­son, Betty Britt, Al­ice Rogers and Mar­garet White, to name a few. Thanks to the Mat­son Com­pany perks they trav­eled to Tahiti and Hawaii for peanuts, $40 round trip on the Lurline. Be­cause she knew ev­ery­one on the ship from the boiler crew to the Cap­tain she was treated like roy­alty on board.

She never mar­ried, never smoked, never drank, never drove a car and never liked veg­eta­bles. But it’s the things Tan­tine al­ways did that we will re­mem­ber and miss her for. She was al­ways lov­ing, thought­ful and gen­er­ous, wicked smart and a fun con­ver­sa­tion­al­ist. She al­ways re­mem­bered our mile­stones with cards and gifts, she al­ways called to see how we were, she al­ways re­mem­bered our friends and de­tails about their lives, al­ways asked af­ter them, she was al­ways at the ready with a joke, which, by the way, she would tell af­ter say­ing, “Pick a cat­e­gory” and sure enough the joke was ap­pro­pri­ate and funny.

She moved to the Her­itage in San Francisco eight years ago to be near her sis­ter Jean­nette who was liv­ing there at the time. True to her amaz­ing social mag­netism she im­me­di­ately made friends, es­pe­cially Stella Voyles with whom she shared so many laughs, prayers and sto­ries. Amaz­ingly at 95 she was still in touch with many friends from her per­sonal and pro­fes­sional lives—she mailed out over 80 Christ­mas cards last month that went across the coun­try!

In her fi­nal days the staff of the Health Cen­ter—wait for it, many of whom had be­come her friends too— took amaz­ing and lov­ing care of her. She was tiny and could seem frail but she was amaz­ingly strong and they han­dled both sides of her so well. Thank you to all for your pa­tient and af­fec­tion­ate care. Also we’d like to thank broad-smiled Kester Ramo of Sut­ter Health Hos­pice for calm­ing and charm­ing her in her most dif­fi­cult days and laugh­ing at her jokes.

Can’t fin­ish her story with­out a tip of the hat to the War­riors, Giants and 49ers.

Their rat­ings are go­ing to go down--they’ve lost a loyal, knowl­edge­able and ded­i­cated fan. Also ATT--she loved, loved, loved the phone. One night she got a wrong num­ber, the two women hit it off and had a phone friend­ship for a long time af­ter. That how eas­ily she made friends all her life. Rest in Peace, Tante. We love you.

A pri­vate burial was held at Holy Cross Ceme­tery. She will be re­mem­bered at masses at both St. Vin­cent de Paul and Notre Dame Des Vic­toires. Do­na­tions may be made to your fa­vorite char­ity.

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