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Sat, Aug. 17

Obituary: Viola (Vi) Janowski

Vi Janowski, 84, passed away in Prescott Valley, Arizona on May 12, 2016, following a short bout with cancer. Her family surrounded and comforted her in her last days.

Vi was born Viola Stoddard in Hardwick, Vermont. She was the eldest of siblings Jeanette, Melvin, Alden and Rosalie. Vi was a lady of many talents, owning several different businesses through the years and working jobs from brick layer, carpenter, restaurant cook, barber, to driving an 18-wheeler down the highways.

She had recently moved back to Arizona after living for seven years in Tok, Alaska. Many in the Tok community appreciated her skills at her “Vi’s Barbershop.” She was a faithful member of the Chapel of the North and the church family was greatly blessed when she played her washboard with the music team and provided special numbers with her melodic. She always chose songs with encouraging messages and recited the words in a meaningful way. She was also a great clogger and blessed her friends with a nice performance on her 80th birthday. She was a gracious hostess, providing many fond memories for folks who enjoyed her hospitality.

A “Renaissance Woman” describes Vi perfectly. A woman who set her own agenda for personal achievements and did not allow herself to be manipulated or intimidated by self-proclaimed spokesmen who try and wrap their political philosophies around terms like equality, choice, peace, tolerance or diversity. She embraced her destiny as a challenge and not as a curse, no matter what her personal circumstances. A lifelong lover of poetry and song, she published her own book of poetry at the age of 78.

She was a winner not a whiner; a leader, not a follower; a victor, not a victim. Vi touched the lives of so many with her generosity, love and friendship. She will be greatly missed.

Information provided by survivors.

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