ARNDT, Ann-Marie (Maisy) - Age 87, died peacefully at her home in Oakland surrounded by her family, Friday, October 26, 2018, at sunset, following a short illness. She was a loving wife and mother and will be missed dearly by her family and friends.
Ann, known to many as Maisy, was born May 15, 1931 in Brussels, Belgium. She attended elementary and high school in Belgium and worked in the administrative offices for the Palais de Beaux Arts Center for Fine Arts in Brussels. Ann’s early years in Belgium were influenced by WWII, most poignantly by her family’s flee from the occupation of Brussels to France. Soon after the war ended, Ann spent a year with her family in La Jolla, CA which became a second home for her.
In 1955 Ann left Belgium and moved to San Francisco. 3 years later she married her beloved husband, Don. They were married for 47 years. The couple enjoyed a vibrant life in San Francisco and made many lifelong friends. Through the Sierra Club, and hiking, they discovered the wonders of Yosemite which they later shared with children and grandchildren on family trips.
In 1962 Don and Ann moved to Berkeley where she ably managed a busy household that included three children and numerous activities. Using her native French language and natural teaching ability Ann started a second career as an after-school French teacher in local schools. In 1981, Ann founded Les Petites Vacances, a French summer day camp in the Oakland hills. More than a thousand children experienced French language education over the more than 10 years the camp existed.
Ann had a vibrant personality and gift for making friends all throughout her life. She cared deeply about family including her mother, Georgia, to whom she was especially close. Her love for La Jolla was passed down to her children and grandchildren that included annual summer trips. She loved watching the sunset in La Jolla from the cliffs over the ocean. To remain connected with Europe Ann, Don and the children traveled back to her homeland often. Ann was active in many clubs including the Claremont Club and those that connected her with her European roots. She supported San Francisco Bay Area theater, music, art museums, community and environmental charities and was a member of St. John’s Presbyterian Church in Berkeley where she served in numerous capacities.
Ann was preceded in death by her husband Don, in 2005. She is survived by, son Eric (Julia), son Philip (Terri), daughter Jennifer Cirelli (Vincent), four grandchildren, Nicholas, Madison, Joey, Alison, and many nieces and nephews. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her sister, Anita, in 2016. A memorial service will be held at 2:00 pm, Sat, Dec. 1, St. John’s Presbyterian Church in Berkeley. Should friends desire, contributions may be sent in Ann’s name to St. John’s Presbyterian Church, 2727 College Avenue, Berkeley, 94705.