Jane Grossman, a woman who did it all and showed others how to live large, died in her island home Feb. 21.
She was born Oct. 21, 1938, in Allentown, Pennsylvania, to Elwood and Alma Shollenberger.
She resided in Holmes Beach and formerly in Sarasota and Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.
She had many journeys in life.
She led a life of many “firsts.” She was the first woman on the Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, police force in 1959. She graduated from Bethlehem Business College and studied at Moravian College and the University of Pennsylvania Extension in Europe. She was a real estate agent and broker for 36 years and received many awards in that field. A true entrepreneur, she also held an insurance license, owned a beauty parlor, several boutiques, a bakery, several motels, an antique store, several commercial properties and acted as a marketing director for author, real estate developer and Italian carmaker Piero Rivolta.
She marched with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Selma, Alabama. She was an activist and, in the early 1990s, she founded a nonprofit civil rights organization, Friends of Unity in the Community, in Sarasota. One of the many honors she received for her activism was the State of Florida Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Award for Dedicated Community Service, which was presented by the late Gov. Lawton Chiles. She was extremely proud of this prestigious honor.
While in Sarasota, she was chair of the housing board for HUD. She had a special focus on helping women rise from challenging life circumstances. She was a guiding light for many women in her life. She also became very interested and active in politics and she ran 16 political campaigns at the local, state and federal level. And yes, she also was a Unitarian minister and ran a New Age Center called The Chapel of Light in Sarasota.
She also was an avid bridge player. She held master points and loved teaching her family and friends.
In 2000, she became semi-retired and moved to Holmes Beach with her husband, Marvin Grossman. For them, Anna Maria Island was paradise, a slice of heaven. She became a active real estate agent on the island and quickly rose to one of the top agents in the area. She also opened a gift shop in Holmes Beach.
And she became immersed in local politics and successfully helped her husband campaign for public office — he is a three-term Holmes Beach city commissioner.
A memorial service and celebration of life, including reflection, will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, March 4, at Roser Memorial Community Church, 512 Pine Ave., Anna Maria.
She is survived by daughters Nicole Skaggs and Shelly Hill; granddaughters Natashia and Rachael; grandson Matthew; step-children Charis, Rochelle and Michael; and loving husband Marvin, a Holmes Beach city commissioner.
Donald P. Knode, 93, long-time Anna Maria Island-Key Royale resident, died Feb. 15 in Bradenton.
Born in Santa Barbara, California, Mr. Knode grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where he became an Eagle Scout and outdoor enthusiast. He developed a keen interest in radio, and as a student was a broadcast announcer at the University of New Mexico.
His university studies were interrupted by the start of World War II, and Don was drafted to learn Japanese at the U. S. Navy Japanese Language School in Boulder, Colorado. As an officer in Naval Intelligence, he was sent to Hiroshima during the U.S. occupation to assess bomb damages to telecommunications.
After the war, he returned to the states and graduated in 1950 from Yale University with a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations. At Yale, he was a proud member of the crew team, which in 1949 beat Harvard in the annual head-to-head regatta — a sporting triumph he would cherish for the rest of his life.
Resuming his pre-war interest in broadcasting, Mr. Knode was hired by ABC and sent to Munich, Germany, to interview Russian refugees. He subsequently joined Radio Free Europe in Istanbul, Turkey.
Later, he joined Merrill Lynch Fenner & Smith, where he had a long, distinguished, international career. He was responsible for opening the first Merrill Lynch office in Japan in 1961, and rose within the firm to the level of vice president.
While in Tokyo, Don also served as president of the American Chamber of Commerce of Japan and eventually started his own consulting and investor relations firm.
He retired in 1998 with wife Barbara to Key Royale in Holmes Beach. He had a life-long love of theater and participated in the Asolo Theatre Guild Playreaders. He was a member of the Yale Club of the Suncoast. He enjoyed playing tennis, and remained a loyal Tampa Bay Bucs fan.
A private service has been planned. Memorial donations may be sent to Alzheimer’s Association, Florida Gulf Coast Chapter, 3277-A Fruitville Road, Suite 1, Sarasota FL 34237.
He is survived by his loving wife of 50 years, Barbara (Hazzard) Knode; daughters Karen and husband Lee Trepte and Kim and husband David Watkinson; son Stephen and wife Sharon; four grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.
Rudolph ‘Rudy’ Spinoza died Feb. 16 in Bradenton. He was 86.
He was a longtime resident of Holmes Beach, a former member of the Artists’ Guild of Anna Maria Island and loved by many friends.
He was born in Connecticut and received his art education in New York City at the School of Visual Arts, Pratt Institute and the Art Students League, where he studied portrait painting under Raphael Soyer.
Upon completion of his studies, he made an extended visit to Wyoming, where at the age of 22 he was given commissions to paint the governors of Wyoming and Colorado.
Back in New York, he opened a graphic illustration and design studio. Among his clients were major ad agencies and corporations.
As a hobby, he enjoyed making violins, one of which has been played in the New York Philharmonic Orchestra.
Survivors include wife Rose; sisters Gloria Nash and Rita van Autreve; several nieces and nephews; and three cats.
Frances Rose Zacchero, of Bradenton, died Feb. 14. She was born Sept. 6, 1926, in New Castle, Pennsylvania, to Nicklaus and Mary Ferraro.
She grew up in Pittsburgh and graduated from Mount Lebanon High School in 1944.
She moved to Bradenton in 1986 and resided there until her death.
She was an active member of Country Village Association, where she planned numerous social events over the years. She also was active in her church, Saints Peter and Paul the Apostles Catholic Church. She was an avid Pittsburgh Pirates fan and a member of the Pirates Boosters Club. She worked the spring training games for many years in Bradenton as an usher and in the gift store.
She was a beautiful and charming woman, kind and generous to all she met.
A service will be held in Pittsburgh at a later date. Memorial donations may be made to Saints Peter & Paul the Apostles Catholic Church, 2850 75th St. W., Bradenton FL 34200.
She is survived by son Chuck of Bradenton; godson James Shine of Pittsburgh; dear friend Ann Lewis; sisters Theresa Dapra and Joan Shine of Pittsburgh; and numerous nieces and nephews.