Janet Shore Boysen
January 23, 1935 – April 22, 2019
Janet Constance Shore Boysen, 84, of Oceanside, CA died peacefully in the loving arms of her husband Jack, son and daughter Eric and Dortha, her daughter-in-law Robynne and her beloved pastor Beth Johnson at 6:31 pm on Earth Day, April 22, 2019. Jan leaves behind, in addition to family noted above, her son-in-law Edward Zinke and grandchildren Chandler and Spencer Zinke, and Amanda, Zoralei, Joseph, Enoch, Mahonri, Esmyral and Renaria Boysen. She is also survived by her first cousins Tom and Geoff Hargreaves, Jim Thornton and Becky Mausolf, as well as countless friends and relatives around the globe.
Jan was born January 23, 1935 to Delbert and Dorothy Shore at the Worthington, MN hospital which served her small nearby town of Rushmore. It was in Rushmore that she was raised, attended elementary school, and made many life-long friends. She graduated from Worthington High School as salutatorian.
Graduating magna cum laude in 1957 from the University of Minnesota with a BA in Journalism and a minor in Geology, Jan began writing for Minnesota Motorist Magazine of the Minnesota State Automobile Association, the state AAA affiliate. It was there in Minneapolis that she met and married Jack at the First Universalist Church. Their association with the Unitarian-Universalist movement continued in each community in which they lived.
After brief residence in Rapid City, SD where Eric was born and Jacksonville, FL where Dortha was born, Jan and Jack moved to the Washington, DC metropolitan area, first to Rockville, MD, then to Reston and later Vienna, VA.
Janet returned to the world of work at the leading edge of a generation of women who sought a larger role in the world than the confines of hearth and home. While living in Rockville, she leveraged her geology minor and wrote for GeoTimes, the journal of the American Geosciences Institute. Jan later worked at Robert E. Perry High School as a teacher’s aide, beginning her long association with public education.
After the move to Reston in 1971, Jan again worked as a teacher’s aide at Langley High School in McLean, VA. When a vacancy opened in the Langley Science department, she became an Earth Science teacher.
Janet left teaching after Dortha’s high school graduation in 1982 and resumed her writing career, this time for National Wildlife magazine, the flagship publication of the National Wildlife Federation. She made a home there as an advocate for ecology and stewardship of the environment. Starting as a clerk, Jan worked her way up through the organization until her name found its way to the masthead as an associate editor and staff writer.
Retiring in 1991, Jan and Jack relocated to Oceanside, CA. Retirement is in many ways a misstatement as she became highly involved with the Palomar Unitarian-Universalist Fellowship, serving in many capacities including a pastoral search committee, in the choir, and as fellowship archivist. She also served as president of the local chapter of the American Association of University Women, and led AAUW’s education program about the history of California. She shared her passion for genealogy with her multi-volume family history beginning with The Family Quilt, a project to which she devoted herself for over 10 years, and which has enjoyed wide circulation among her scattered relatives.
This warm-hearted woman won friends everywhere she went. As an accomplished writer, Jan’s skill with the written word was inspiring and brought people together. Her descriptions are works of art, connecting generations. Her home remains a reflection of Jan’s beauty, open and inviting, with colorful gardens she lovingly tended, a picturesque view of the mountains and city below, and rooms filled with mementos representing a rich tapestry of cultures from around the globe. Jan made everyone feel like family.
Janet fought for life against breast cancer and complications of pneumonia and a stroke that ultimately she was unable to overcome. Attending her in her last hours were family gathered from California, Washington, Utah, Colorado, and Norway.
Jan will be honored in a memorial service on June 29, 2019 at 3:00 pm at the Palomar Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, 1600 Buena Vista Drive, Vista, CA 92081.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations be made to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation at 28 West 44th Street, Suite 609, New York, NY 10036 or online at www.bcrf.org; or to the Palomar U-U Fellowship at 1600 Buena Vista Drive, Vista, CA 92081.