Harry Ghiringhelli Obituary (1934 – 2023) – Fairfax, CA

Harry Ghiringhelli died surrounded by his family on March 14, 2023 in Fairfax, California. Harry was born on February 10, 1934 at Cottage Hospital in San Rafael, California. He was the third of four children born to Joseph Ghiringhelli and Antionette (Pagani) Ghiringhelli. Harry lived in San Rafael until 1937 when his parents bought and moved into Deer Park Villa, a 10 acre estate and restaurant in Fairfax. While still at school, Harry began working at Deer Park Mansion, where his main job was to keep the bar stocked. As he got older, he learned bartender and chef skills. When not behind the bar or in the kitchen, he acted as Deer Park’s plumber, electrician and contractor. All the skills he taught himself by meticulously observing professionals once hired to make various improvements at Deer Park In 1951, Harry was a sophomore at Marin Catholic. Harry was a great basketball player, being named All Northern California Basketball Guard his senior year when Marin Catholic won the state pennant. From 1951 to 1954 he attended college at Santa Clara University and earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration. It took him an extra quarter to graduate because he kept his class load light so he could travel back to Fairfax to work at Deer Park every weekend after his father fell ill. It was on one of those trips home from college that Harry met his future wife. Jaqueline “Jackie” Biasotti was babysitting for Harry’s sister, Dolores Forni, when Harry came over to watch the only television on the property. They started dating shortly after. When Harry was drafted into the Army in 1957, he and Jackie married and they moved to his first station in San Antonio, Texas. The next year, Harry was assigned to the Presidio in San Francisco. Harry and Jackie moved back to Deer Park and converted the old coach house where they raised their daughters Jo “Joey” and Carol. Harry traveled into town during the week to do his army errands while working at Deer Park Villa every weekend. After Harry was fired, he continued to work full-time at the restaurant. He and Jackie later built a house on a corner of the Deer Park Villa estate, where they spent the rest of their lives as the fix-it-guy, passing on his knowledge of real estate and business to younger generations to the last. Harry has been an outdoorsman all his life. Growing up, he could often be seen running around with his brother Bob in search of game. Duck hunting was a family affair and many of his fondest memories were of his father’s duck club. He enjoyed horseback riding and was known to ride in the city’s parades. He was also an avid fisherman, frequenting the nearby creeks and lakes and San Francisco Bay. Harry’s greatest joys in life were being with, caring for, and feeding family and friends. He was a caring and considerate father, grandfather, great-grandfather and uncle. He always did everything to help people and was very proud that he and his family had never betrayed anyone. Harry was a loving husband to Jackie for 64 years. At the end of Jackie’s life, Harry was a compassionate caregiver until her death in 2021. Harry is survived by his two daughters, Joey (Ken Thornton) and Carol, his grandsons Bryan Carlson (Katie) and Annie Thornton, his two great-granddaughters, Remy and Lucy, his brother Jon Ghiringhelli, and many nephews and nieces who loved him dearly. A memorial service will be celebrated Monday, March 27 at 11:00 a.m. at St. Anselm’s Church, 97 Shady Lane, Ross, California. All friends and relatives are welcome. A reception follows at Deer Park Villa. In lieu of flowers, you can donate to Jesuits West at Supported by Monte’s Chapel of the Hills, San Anselmo, CA.

Published by Marin Independent Journal on March 19, 2023.

34465541-95D0-45B0-BEEB-B9E0361A315ATo plant trees in memory, please visit the Sympathy Store.

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