Jeanne M  Hsu obituary

Jeanne M Hsu Obituary

Marin County, California, United States

January 01, 1924 - May 25, 2015

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Jeanne M  Hsu obituary

Jeanne M Hsu Obituary

Jan 01, 1924 - May 25, 2015

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Jeanne M. Hsu left this world peacefully on May 25, 2015 with her two sons by her side.  She lived an inspiring life and touched generations of students with her successive careers as teacher and school librarian.  She raised her family drawing on experience with the ravages of war and the promise of peace.  Jeanne instilled in her children and all who loved her a passion for learning to make the world a better place. Jeanne died of natural causes, in the peace of her own home.  She was 91 years old.


Jeanne was born in 1924 in Liège, Belgium to Arthur and Aurore Horbach.  She lost both of her parents during World War II, and living under the war-time Occupation, Jeanne cared for her younger sisters Raymonde and Rachel, while she also completed her own studies at the École Normale.  After the war, Jeanne and her sisters came to the United States.  While her two sisters returned to Belgium, Jeanne stayed on to earn an advanced degree in French literature at the University of California at Berkeley.  There she met Kai-Yu Hsu, and the two were married in 1950.  Jeanne and Kai-Yu made their home and family in Monterey, California, and then in the San Francisco Bay Area.  After the death of Kai-Yu in 1982, Jeanne continued to live in the Bay Area, and maintained a loving home for her family.


Jeanne taught French for many years.  She raised her two sons, supported Kai-Yu’s career as a professor of Chinese, and during many summers took the family to travel abroad and visit with her sisters and nieces in Belgium.  Later in life she made a second career, returning to UC Berkeley to earn a Master’s degree in Library Science, and serving as a school librarian at Marin Country Day School until her retirement.


Jeanne gave her time for many years as a volunteer at the Marin County Free Library as an indexer of local history articles.  She also volunteered to help those in need, including youth tutoring, and gave support for art and science museums, and social justice organizations.  As her children grew and her husband advanced in his teaching career, Jeanne expanded her circle of friends and colleagues through her volunteer efforts on behalf of the National Organization of Women, including for a period of time hosting at her home the production of the newspaper “The Marin Womens News Journal,” and by enrolling in classes on literature, history, and the arts.  With her family and dear friends she was an active theater and opera lover, and especially cherished a post-performance coffee and dessert to talk about a play or opera with family and whoever shared her table.  Most recently it was through folk dancing that she made special, lasting friendships.  Jeanne and her husband Kai-Yu were fond of telling stories of their romantic first camping trip to Yosemite National Park in the days before anyone could afford special gear.  Together they taught their sons the joy of camping and the love and stewardship of nature.  Jeanne was a supporter of the National and California Parks, and adored year-round hiking in Yosemite and Mount Tamalpais.  She is survived by her beloved two sons Jean-Pierre and Roland, her two granddaughters Marielle and Liliane, and her sister Raymond

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