Posted by: resparish | May 25, 2010

Geraldine Louise Payne, 1918 – 2010

Geraldine Louise (Hughes) Payne passed away on Tuesday morning, May 25, 2010 in Manor Care Health center in Sunnyvale.  She was 92 years old.

Her Funeral Mass will take place on Friday, May 28, at 11:00 am and will be followed by burial at Gate of Heaven Cemetery.

Geraldine Louise Hughes was born at home in San Francisco on Monday, May 13th, 1918, to Harry and Ida Marie “Ma” Hughes.

Geraldine was the last of 4 children born to Harry and Ma. Geraldine went to Frederick Burke Elementary School and then on to Balboa High in San Francisco where she met here future husband, Harrison S. Payne, in a chemistry class in their junior year. They courted until Harrison completed college at UC Berkeley and was commissioned into the Army upon graduation.  Geraldine lived in the Hughes family home until she and Harrison married on July 5th, 1941.  Their marriage was blessed at the Old Mission Dolores and Geraldine  became a Catholic.

They lived at the Presido during World War II where their first two children, David and John, were born – David being the first born in 1942, and John in 1945.

After the War, Harrison and Geraldine bought a house in the Parkside District of San Francisco and the births of their girls followed:  Monica in 1950 and Stephanie in 1951.

After the War, Harrison began his career with Pacific Telephone & Telegraph.  After a brief job transfer to Sacramento from 1960-‘65, they settled in Los Gatos where Geraldine continued to reside after Harrison’s death in 1995.

Geraldine was always a “strong” woman, independent, firm thinking, and robust.  She enjoyed club work and participated in the Reserve Officers Association for Ladies for several decades and held numerous offices over those years, including California State President. She also was active in the Delphians & a local hearing loss support group in Los Gatos which she thoroughly enjoyed in her last years. She was always a proud American and devout supporter of our military.  She also was a musician and learned to play the piano as a child.  She went to San Francisco Junior College in the late ‘50’s and received an associate degree in Music.  Her children remember nights when she was at the piano composing a piece for her class, or practicing some song.

Geraldine lived independently until July, 2009.  Then, at age 91, she gradually became less able to care for herself and moved to Manor Care in August, 2009, where she resided until she passed away on Tuesday morning, May 25th, from a tired heart.

Geraldine’s passing is like the end of an era – the Depression, post-war, Horatio Alger generation. Computers, cell phones, CD’s, DVD’s, HD, etc. were not in their experience or interest.  She worked hard raising the kids & keeping the house while Harrison worked hard at his business and in the Army Reserves.

She will be missed by many, including her children, grandchildren, niece, cousins and family friends. To her children, Geraldine “Gerry” Payne was and always will be “our Mom.”

Please keep Geraldine and her family in your prayers.


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