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Marian C. "Riana" Alexander
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Birth: Mar. 11, 1922
Death: Sep. 28, 2005

Long time Santa Cruz Resident Marian ‘Riana' C. Alexander, passed away peacefully on September 28, 2005. Born March 11, 1922 in Bay City, Michigan. Riana had a permanent residence near the Santa Cruz Yacht Harbor since 1970, where watching the beautiful sunsets over Lighthouse Point was one of her greatest joys.Riana came from a family of educators; her mother Genevieve Hayes Clark was a Special Education Teacher, and her father Dr. James Edward Crites Jr. was a Physics Professor with a PhD in Physics from the University of Indiana. Growing up, Riana lived in Indiana, Arizona and Ohio, where her father taught at various universities. Riana graduated from Pierre S. DuPont High School in Wilmington, Delaware where she lived with her Aunt Virginia and Uncle Dr. George Rigby, a Chemist with DuPont Co. She enjoyed playing the cello and during her four years in Delaware, studied with Orlando Cole of the Curtis String Quartet fame. She then worked as a secretary for Pierre DuPont, to earn money to pay for college.Riana attended Oberlin College where she graduated in '45 in Social Science, studying economics there under the dynamic economist Carl Arlt. After her second year in college, she took a break to volunteer for 4 months at a rural Quaker work camp in Mexico, teaching swimming and English and assisting at a medical clinic. She described her volunteer work in Mexico as probably the best single major decision in her life, and the basis of everything that followed. One of her favorite classes at Oberlin was Art History, which gave her the desire to travel. "Art has enhanced my life, music has enhanced my soul. Thank you, Oberlin!"In 1945, Riana joined the Red Cross as a ‘Doughnut Girl' and was sent to West China via a troop transport ship and her first airplane ride: in the co-pilot seat of a C-54 over colorful Burma and the majestic Himalayas mountains. She worked in the Enlisted Men's Club in Peking, in charge of the library and activity rooms. Perhaps the highlight of her stay in Peking was a taste of General Chiang-Kai-Shek's hospitality; when she was invited with a group of American service women and officers to join the General and Madame Chiang-Kai-Shek for an evening of Chinese Opera in the Forbidden City. Her favorite job was conducting sight-seeing trips of Peking for the G.I.s, including one trip to the remote Great Wall of China. "This was – work?"She then took a job with the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA) in Shanghai, where one of her tasks was a statistical report on hunger in Post-War China for the Director of UNRRA-Shanghai, Benjamin Kiser that was presented to the Hoover Commission on World Hunger, for which she acknowledged in a letter from President Truman. After a year in Shanghai, she transferred to a regional office of UNRRA, in the rural, walled city of Tai-Yuan; a city under the rule of the War Lord Yen Shi-Shan. After UNRRA began to downsize, she left that organization to spend the spring of 1947 teaching English at Rewi Alley's Bailey Industrial Training School (Indusco) in the Gobi Desert.Riana returned to the U.S. in the summer of 1947, and worked in New York City as assistant editor for the McGraw-Hill Business Newsletter. In 1949 - 1953, she then lived in Paris, France and worked first as an economist for the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) with Nobel Prize recipient Alva Myrdal, and then with the Marshall Plan researching examples of superior productivity in Italian industry. She met her future husband Louis Frutschi in Paris. They moved to the U.S., married in Sausalito, CA on December 26, 1955 and had two children, Marc and Gabrielle, before settling in Palo Alto, CA in 1963. Louis and Riana started the very successful L'Auberge French Restaurant in Redwood City, CA, and operated that business from 1964 to 1985. Riana continued her work as an international economist for Stanford Research Institute (SRI) in nearby Menlo Park, before making the transition in her career to rental property management.Riana attended both the Palo Alto and Santa Cruz Friends Meeting. She was a conservationist and a generous contributor to many charitable and environmental organizations including the Friends Meeting, the Sierra Club, World Wildlife Fund and the Environmental Defense Fund.Memorial Service is to be held Sunday October 23, 2005, at the Santa Cruz Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends – Quakers, 225 Rooney St., Santa Cruz, California. Please arrive by 1:45 pm, as the service will start at 2:00 pm. Donations in her memory may be made to the Alzheimer's Association, Santa Cruz County Chapter, 1777-A Capitola Road, Santa Cruz, Ca 95062NOTE: Burial is unknown and is only for FindAGrave. 
Santa Cruz Memorial Park
Santa Cruz
Santa Cruz County
California, USA
Created by: dot
Record added: Oct 18, 2005
Find A Grave Memorial# 12093251
Marian C. Riana Alexander
Added by: dot
Marian C. Riana Alexander
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Added by: The Perplexed Historian
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- dot
 Added: Jan. 25, 2015

- Ricky Hempel
 Added: Apr. 15, 2007
- quebecoise
 Added: Feb. 22, 2007
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