Jeanne Hester Hinchman Abbott, a summer resident of Ashland since 1990, died Sunday, November 28, 2010, of natural causes, surrounded by her large family, at her home in Palo Alto, Calif. She was a fun-loving, strong-willed woman who loved to tell stories and dance the Charleston. She had thousands of friends.
Jeanne was born May 2, 1922, in Oakland, Calif., and spent her childhood in San Jose, the only child of Ada Gabbs Hinchman and Charles Merton Hinchman, descendents of California pioneer families. Charles was an office equipment salesman and, Ada was a homemaker and volunteer
Episcopal church worker.
Jeanne graduated with honors from San Jose High School in 1940, and in 1944, from Stanford University, where she was a member of the Gamma Phi sorority and majored in political science. She married her high school sweetheart, Richard
Edson Dick Abbott, in June, 1945.
During World War II, Jeanne lived in San Francisco, Calif., with her girlfriends, and worked in the furs department at J. Magnin, while Dick served in the South Pacific as an ensign with the U.S. Navy. After the war, Dick obtained a bachelors of science degree in electrical engineering from UC Berkeley, and pursued a career with General Electric, in Schenectady and Detroit, before the young family returned to the San Francisco Bay Area in the early 1950s. The Abbotts raised their four children in Palo Alto, Calif., where Dick founded Abbott Engineering Company, and spent a long business
career selling electronics components to the high-tech
industries of Silicon Valley. In 1990, the Abbotts, built a
summer home in Ahsland, Ore., to be near their daughter, Christine Abbott Stokes, and grandchildren, Ben, Caleb, Alexi and Maddy Stokes.
Jeanne was active in several civic and arts organizations, including the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Stanford Committee for Art, the Stanford Museum, and the Woman's Club of Palo Alto. She was an avid world traveler and tennis player. Jeanne was true to her school, her husband, her family, and her multitude of friends. Her laugh, her stories, her charm, and her love of people will not be forgotten.
Jeanne was predeceased by her husband Dick, who died in 2003. She is survived by her four children, Carol Abbott Harris, of San Francisco, Calif., Christine Abbott Stokes, of Ashland, Ore., Priscilla Abbott, of Sacramento, Calif., and Richard Edson Hap Abbott, Jr., of Palo Alto, Calif.; ten grandchildren; and a great-granddaughter.
Memorial services, with reception to follow, will be held Friday, December 17, 2010, at 1:00 p.m., at All Saints Parish Episcopal, corner of Waverley and Hamilton Streets, Palo Alto, Calif.