Elaine Angela Hudson, loving wife and mother, passed away peacefully on July 21, 2017, at her home in St. Helena. Elaine was preceded in death by her first husband William (Bill) Paine, her parents Albert and Asunta Paladini and her brother Dr. Reynold Paladini. She is survived by her husband, Harter Hudson, as well as her son Mark Paine, and her stepchildren William, Eliot and Elizabeth.
Elaine was born on November 20, 1925 in the San Francisco Bay Area, the younger of two children. She graduated from San Leandro High School. She met Bill Paine when he was a park ranger in Yosemite. They married and eventually moved to Peoria, IL, where Bill participated in the Caterpillar Tractor Co.’s four-year College Graduate Training Program. During that time Elaine worked in their Sales Department. It was there that their only son Mark was born.
They then moved to Topeka, KS where Bill took a job with Martin Tractor Co., the local Caterpillar dealer. Elaine attended Washburn University in Topeka where she received a BA in English Literature (with an Art Minor) and a Secondary Teacher’s Credential. She tutored freshmen in English Lit for the chairman of the English Department. She helped set up the Campfire Girls Program and chaired their Board. In addition she served on the Campfire Regional Board. Elaine also served as UNICEF Chairman and attended the White House Conference on Youth.
In 1972 they moved to Jacksonville, FL when Bill purchased an interest in a John Deere construction equipment dealership. After moving to Jacksonville, she became active with the Jacksonville Art Museum, planning and leading group tours, both national and international (New York, Atlanta, San Francisco, China, Germany, Italy, etc.). She also headed up programs for the American Cancer Society. Bill died in a horse riding accident in 1982.
Following a reconnection with her high school sweetheart Harter, the two were married at a small ceremony in Topeka, KS. They lived in Florida for a few years before eventually moving back to California in 1988, living in Calistoga until 1996 when they settled in St. Helena.
Elaine was a docent at the Sharpsteen Museum in Calistoga for many years. After moving to St. Helena she was on the board of the Napa Valley Art Museum in Yountville. As a founding board member, she was instrumental in the creation and support of The Rianda House senior center in St. Helena, where she regularly participated in their programs. She served on the boards of the Land Trust, the Boys and Girls Club, the Federated Women of the Upper Napa Valley, the Napa Valley Museum, the Sharpsteen Museum, the St. Helena Library and the St. Helena Historical Society. Served as president on three of these boards.
She was a member of numerous book clubs throughout her life and was a passionate and voracious reader. She was also an officer and president of an investment club in the Napa Valley for a number of years as well as the Heart and Soil Garden Club.
Elaine was widely known and deeply loved by everyone. She made dear, loving and lifelong friends wherever she went. She will be missed beyond measure. A memorial service and celebration of life will be held at the Holy Cross Cemetery in St. Helena on Spring Street on Friday, August 4 at 10:30am. The family suggests anyone wishing to remember Elaine donate in her name to the Rianda House, 1475 Main St., St. Helena, 94574.
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