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Joanne D. Vaiarello

Joanne D. Vaiarello, 81, died peacefully on Tuesday, March 8 in the presence of her family.

She was a resident of Hughson. She was the youngest of three children, born to Dorothy and Leo C. Gast in Fresno. She graduated from San Joaquin Memorial High School where she served as student body president and made life-long friends. She attended Fresno State University and CSU Bakersfield.

In 1951, she married Frank J. Vaiarello and began a career as a devoted wife, loving mother of five children, gardener and homemaker. In the public school system, she loved her work as a teacher’s aide.

Mrs. Vaiarello was known for her friendly smile, her warm and compassionate ways with children and students, her social ease, and for her constant priorities of faith, family and friends.

She was an excellent Italian cook, bridge player, tennis player, sports fan, arts lover, reader, writer, and whistler. She and her husband enjoyed a long retirement on the California Central Coast. She also volunteered with her church and in her community. To 10 lucky kids, she was simply “Grandma” – her last great role.

Her family is grateful to the caring staff of Graceful Living, Oakdale and to the caring staff of the Alexander Cohen Hospice House, Hughson.

She is survived by her children, Franz (Rahnea) Vaiarello of Aptos, Joan Marie Pair of Bakersfield, Paul (Paula) Viarello of Edgecomb, ME, Gina (Dino) Marsili of San Ramon, Leesa (Mitch) Gagos of Oakdale; 10 grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her beloved husband of 53 years, Frank J. Vaiarello; her parents; and siblings, Barbara Graham and James Gast.

A dedicated mass will be held (date TBA) at St. Therese’s Catholic Church, Fresno. A private ceremony will be held at the site of interment in Los Osos.

Remembrances may be made to Community Hospice, 4368 Spyres Way, Modesto, CA 95356.