Sunday, April 11, 2010

Jane (Demetra) Alioto

Jane [Demetra] (nee: Baldukas) Alioto, age 89, passed away peacefully on April 11, 2010, at the Ridgewood Care Center in Racine.

Jane Alioto was born in Racine, Wisconsin, on March 31, 1921, the daughter of Nicholas and Paraskevi (nee: Corombos) Baldukas.  She attended Washington Park High School, graduating in 1939.  After graduation, Jane began her professional career at The Badger Shirt Company in Racine, where she worked for 15 years as a seamstress, producing specialized uniforms for a number of government agencies.  Later, she was employed in the accounting department at the Wisconsin Natural Gas Company in Racine.

It was during this time that Jane met her husband, Francesco ‘Frank’ Alioto, who was from Milwaukee.  They were married in Holy Matrimony in Racine at the original Grand Avenue Kimissis tis Theotokou Greek Orthodox Church on September 21, 1957.  Relocating to Milwaukee after their marriage, Jane devoted herself to being a wife and mother for a number of years.  She enjoyed frequent visits from her extended Racine family and always looked forward to her frequent holidays in Racine.  Prior to her retirement, Jane was employed by the Milwaukee Public School System for seven years, serving as a Food Service Manager for the Samuel Clemens Elementary School on Milwaukee’s near north side.

Jane and Frank moved to Racine after their retirement and enjoyed many years of travel, family visits and holidays.  Jane’s favorite trips were to see her grandchildren in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.  She valued education and would encourage family and friends to continuously seek wisdom and enlightenment.  Jane was always the voice of encouragement for those who sought “true knowledge” rooted in the ancient Greek tradition.  She had a wonderful sense of humor and loved to visit and leisurely converse with family and friends in the traditional European CafĂ© style; she was never in a hurry, and always wanted to hear what was new and exciting in the world.

Jane was active in both the Racine and Milwaukee (Annunciation Church, which was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright) Greek Orthodox Churches.  This tradition began with the Baldukas family in Racine, where they were one of the founding families of the original Kimissis tis Theotokou Greek Orthodox Church.  Like many of the Racine Greeks, Jane and her family lived in Racine’s “Greek Town,” within walking distance of the church.  The family home on 8th Street became affectionately known as the Baldukas Villa and Jane always enjoyed a leisurely ride through the old neighborhood to rekindle fond memories of her youth and times past.  Jane was also a member of the Greek Orthodox Ladies Philoptochos Society.  She was dedicated to her beloved husband, son, and grandchildren.

Jane had great pride in her native city of Racine as well as the Greek/Byzantine traditions associated with the Greek community and the Greek Orthodox Church.  She was a faithful Orthodox Christian who will long be remembered for her kindness, boldness, caring demeanor, intelligence, and a true “zest for life.”

Surviving is her beloved husband, Frank (Francesco); loving son and daughter-in-law, Michael Francesco and Katherine Anne Alioto; granddaughters, Anna Paraskevi and Alexandra Katherine Vicenza; grandson, Antonio Francesco Giorgio all of Bloomfield Hills, Michigan; brother, John Baldukas; sisters-in-law, Leona Baldukas and Sandy Alioto; goddaughters, Demetra Baldukas of Racine and Judy Patterson of Apalachicola, Florida; as well as her special lifelong friend Helen Vallner.  She is further survived by many nieces, nephews, cousins, other relatives and many dear friends in Racine, Milwaukee, and Iron Mountain, Michigan.

Jane was preceded in death by an infant son; sister, Mary Baldukas; brothers, Peter (Gladys) Baldukas, Plato Baldukas, Theodore (Penelopi) Baldukas, Bill (Aryliss) Baldukas and Chris Baldukas; sister-in-law Luella Baldukas; brothers-in-law, Joseph (Rose) Alioto, John Alioto, James Alioto, Charles (Norma) Alioto, Anthony (Mildred) Alioto, and sister-in-law, Mary Patelski.

The family will receive friends and associates on Tuesday, April 20, 2010, from 4 to 7 p.m. at Sturino Funeral Home, 3014 Northwestern Ave., Racine, with the traditional Greek Orthodox Trisagion Service for the Dead at 7 p.m.

Funeral services will be held at Kimissis tis Theotokou Greek Orthodox Church, 1335 S. Green Bay Road, Racine, on Wednesday, April 21, 2010, at 9:30 a..m. with the Rev. John Ketchum officiating.  The committal will take place at Southern Wisconsin Veteran’s Memorial Cemetery, Union Grove, Wisconsin.

In lieu of flowers, the family has suggested memorials in Jane’s memory to the Kimissis tis Theotokou Greek Orthodox Church Library Fund.

The family would like to thank the doctors and nursing staffs at St. Mary’s Hospital, Ridgewood Rehabilitation Center, and the Hospice Alliance for all of their kind and loving care, as well as Sharon and Demetra Baldukas who provided special care, comfort and loving support during Jane’s final weeks.  Also of special note, the family would like to extend its gratitude to Jane’s extraordinary friend and partner at Ridgewood Rehabilitation Center, Josephine Polcin.

Sturino Funeral Home
3014 Northwestern Ave., Racine  262 632-4479

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