Mon. May 29th, 2023

Virginia Madeline O’Brien, daughter of Thomas and Dionicia Galegos, was born on August 20, 1932. She was born in San Francisco and the fifth of six children (four brothers and one sister). Virginia graduated from Mission High School and married her high-school sweetheart Donald O’Brien. While saving up for their first home, a modest house near Ocean Beach, on Kirkham Street, they had a son named Don Jr. Sven and Iris, their good neighbors and friends, would often accompany them to the beach. As Don’s career at the San Francisco Fire Dept was well established, they decided to move to Marin. Many SF firefighters have done this. Virginia and her husband lived in Novato for more than 60 years. The house was located just a few blocks from the Our Lady of Loretto Catholic Church and School, where Claudine, their younger daughter attended 1st-8th grades. Virginia was a member of the Boutique. A group of women who met weekly to make handmade crafts that they would sell as fundraisers for the school at Christmas. She was also involved in the annual summer Rummage sale. She and Don became good friends with Jeanne Schoonover and John Schoonover who were the parents of Claudine’s best friend Karen. Virginia was the last of all to pass away. Virginia returned to part-time work as a yard manager at Lynwood elementary school across the town when Don retired after 26 years with the SFFD. She was called “Miss OB”, or “OB”, at the school. She was a Lynwood Yard Duty for the next seventeen years. She spoke of the great friends she made there, and she would see many kids who she had met on yard duty as adults with their own children. Virginia loved kids, and her favorite two were her grandchildren Alex Young & Dionicia Mager. She kept fit by walking five miles around her home every day. Later, “the walk”, which was originally 5 miles long, became 3 miles. She walked with Don until her legs were no longer strong enough to do so. She spent nearly every day sweeping, weeding and talking with the people who passed by her house. She said that she always met nice people. Virginia and Don, her husband, enjoyed going to garage sales and auctions. They were always on the lookout for special or unique antiques. They collected clocks and mainly the wind-up chiming variety. She collected miniature dolls, shoes and bells that were displayed all over her home. She still had dolls and shoes in her bedroom when she moved into her daughter’s home two years prior to her death. Virginia, who was bedridden at 90 years old when she died, was always lucid despite her hearing impairment. She was a huge fan of the San Francisco Giants, and she never missed a game on television even when they went through a bad patch. Her favorite season of the year was baseball. She died peacefully on the afternoon of January 17th, with her family by her side. She will now be able to join her late husband Don, who died in 2009.