Jeanette Drisko Rideout

Jeanette Drisko Rideout

Reedsburg, WI – Jeanette (Jean) Drisko Rideout, age 96, a long-time Madison Wisconsin resident, passed away on June 30, 2014 at Sauk County Health Care Center, Reedsburg, WI.

She was born in Jonesport, Maine, on March 11, 1918, the daughter of Leon Rowell Drisko and Caroline Rumery Drisko, but grew up in Belfast, Maine. She received a BA (Phi Beta Kappa) from Colby College, Waterville, Maine in 1939 and a BS in Library Science from Simmons College, Boston in 1940.

On August 2, 1947 she married Walter B. Rideout in Durham, New Hampshire. They were the parents of Linda Carolyn Parrish, Richard Bates Rideout and David John Rideout, and the grandparents of Laura Jeanette Parrish, Thomas Willard Parrish, Katherine Rose Parrish, Claire Marian Parrish, Molly Alyssum Rideout and Wesley Cole Rideout, and the great-grandparents of Connor Thomas Maki, Addison Rose Maki and Alex Maki.

Among other libraries, Jean worked in the Enoch Pratt Free Library, Baltimore MD, the University of New Hampshire Library, in Durham New Hampshire, Northwestern University Library in Evanston IL and her favorite by far, the School of Library Science Library at the University of Wisconsin-Madison from which she retired in 1983 as Associate Director. After retirement, Jean was asked to organize a library in the UW-Madison Arboretum where she worked as a volunteer for ten years. She also organized the first Annual Native Plant Sale for the Friends of the Arboretum. With her enthusiasm for gardening, she and her husband Walter helped to found the Wisconsin Hosta Society and planted several hosta gardens at the Olbrich Botanical Gardens as well as growing about three hundred different hosta varieties in their own garden on Seminole Hwy.

Jean’s love for birding was a joy from earliest childhood until the present. Their other favorite hobby was dancing, especially square and round dancing. They also loved to travel and in later years visited Mexico, Central America, especially Costa Rica, Trinidad and Tobago, also the British Isles, Scandinavia, Switzerland, Kenya, France and of course, Canada and the United States. They helped to found the ARC-Dane County and were active volunteers for many years, helping developmentally challenged people realize their fullest potential.

At her request, there will be no memorial service or visitation but if desired, contributions may be made to the Friends of the UW-Madison Arboretum, the Nature Conservancy or Options in Community Living.

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