Obituary Listings

Janet Lou O'Brien

June 14, 1941 September 25, 2017
Janet Lou O'Brien
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Obituary for Janet Lou O'Brien

Janet Lou O’Brien passed away on Monday, September 25, following a lengthy illness. She was 76. Janet was born in Charleston, West Virginia, to the late Gerald (“Gitter”) Willison and Mary Alice (Schnaufer) Willison. She grew up in Marietta, and was a graduate of Marietta High School and Marietta College. Janet taught art for the Marietta City Schools for thirty years, until her retirement.
Janet possessed a lifelong interest in nature, the outdoors, and all animals. She was a devoted dog owner, she rescued stray cats, and she nursed baby bunnies, birds and squirrels she found in her yard. Any animal fortunate enough to be adopted by Janet enjoyed a loving home for the remainder of its life. She also enjoyed gardening, and in her earlier years spent many hours outside with her trees, flowers and birds. Janet enjoyed living in Marietta. She was proud of the City’s history, architecture, and parks and she especially loved the views of the Ohio River. Over her lifetime she belonged to many clubs and organizations, including the Antique Club, Stock Club, the Marietta Tree Commission, and she served on the Board of the Castle. Until her illness, Janet enjoyed playing cards with her friends, visiting Colonial Williamsburg, the Biltmore, and Naples, Florida with her husband, as well as spending time in Columbus with her family and friends. Her spirits always were lifted when she spent time with her granddaughter Natalie.
Janet spent many years caring for her mother, who passed away in 2009. In addition to her parents, Janet was preceded in death by her sisters, Roxanna Willison and Patricia Schafer, and, earlier this year, her husband of fifty years, Terry. She is survived by her daughter Julie (Edward) Bacome and granddaughter Natalie Bacome of Dublin, second daughter Dr. Kelli Cawley, sister-in-law Linda Sue (“Susie”) (Sandy) O’Brien of Huber Heights, and her extended Mar-Pak family. Her family wishes to extend a heartfelt thank you to the many friends and neighbors who visited her, took her to dinner, cared for her animals, brought meals, puppies, cookies and flowers, including the entire Cawley family, her Bridge Girls, the Coils, the Secrest family, the Watts and the Wagners. Her family also wants to thank Marietta Home Health and Hospice, as well as Safe at Home, whose caregivers provided thoughtful and compassionate care to Janet during her illness.
There will be a Celebration of Life on Saturday, September 30 from 1:00 until 3:30 p.m. at Spagna’s Italian Restaurant, 301 Gilman Avenue. Friends are welcome to attend and will have an opportunity to speak about Janet and to share stories of their many years of friendship with her. There will be a private burial. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Castle, 418 Fourth Street, Marietta, or to the Marietta Community Foundation, P.O. Box 77, Marietta.
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