Cover photo for Janet Louise La Selle's Obituary
1948 Janet 2023

Janet Louise La Selle

May 17, 1948 — December 20, 2023

Farmington

Janet Louise Clark was born to Thomas Patrick Clark and Audrey Gates Clark on May 17, 1948, in Denver Colorado. She was the oldest of three children and is survived by one brother Robert who lives in Albuquerque. Robert followed his father’s trade as a homebuilder and is now retired. Her younger brother, Michael Shane passed away in 2005. Michael was a Down’s Syndrome child and the light of Janet’s life with his antics, simple happiness, and joys of life. That’s not to leave Robert out because he and Mike had their relationship which could be described as delightful but trying for both.

            Because she was the eldest, Janet was charged with the responsibility of her brothers when their mother worked. Unfortunately, Janet’s mom and dad divorced when she was twelve. This event, not surprisingly, made an immense change in her character and how she lived life.

            After high school, Janet went to college in Florida where she studied education. Later she transferred to Arizona State University where she earned her bachelor's degree in elementary education. This career choice won’t surprise anyone who knew her because of her bossy nature and endless suggestions she thought would make things better. She wanted excellence from anyone she worked with and was annoyed when someone didn’t meet her expectations. After she began to teach, her students will attest to her relentless exacting standards. They achieved their very best and then some.

            All this is not to say that she was so authoritative that she ran people off. Janet presented a sweet, but rare, personality that complimented her dominance and drew people to her. Everyone she knew liked and respected her.  Another rare trait Janet possessed was her ability to recognize and recover gracefully from something she did that incensed another person. This lady possessed several rare and endearing traits.

            Janet briefly married when she was in her early thirties. Unfortunately, that marriage didn’t last and ended in a dreadful divorce. From that marriage, however, came the blessing of Nicole. Janet and her daughter were very close and enjoyed many mother-daughter activities. Not unexpectedly, Nicole is blessed with several of her mother's qualities.

            Janet married Alan La Selle in 1999 which resulted in 25 years of wedded bliss. The couple enjoyed each other very much and were exceedingly happy relishing the simple things of life.

            Al deliberately talks slowly, a trait that Janet had to learn to live with. Al recalls Janet asking him, “Did you take a course in slow talking.” He replied, “No, I just hear slower than you talk and respond accordingly.” This peculiarity made the couple so close that Janet finished many of Al’s sentences just as he would have. Many times Al would finish what Janet was saying by interrupting her. This, too, annoyed his dear wife, but she learned to expect it and tolerated her man’s bad habit. Many times they confirmed a decision when they prayerfully came to the same conclusion. Further, people referred to the couple as “Janet and Al”, or the reverse, instead of using only one first name. They truly were one flesh.

            Al brought to the marriage a son named Cameron. He was aged 6 years at the time. Janet and he immediately hit it off. Because she was a teacher and, like most kids that age, Cameron thought teachers knew everything. Cameron knew his dad didn’t know anything so he constantly bombarded his step-mother with questions about things most people never thought of. Because she loved kids, Janet never tired of the boy’s queries and did her best to come up with sensible answers. Cameron was blessed with Janet’s teaching abilities which taught him to find answers to his curiosities in a way that caused him to think that Janet answered his questions.

            Eventually, Cameron grew up and had children of his own. He was blessed with a daughter Gabriella Grace lovingly known as GiGi, and then a son named Harley Keith. Cameron is an exceedingly devoted father and was insistent on Janet being a part of their lives. Despite not being able to see them very often, Janet loved GiGi and Harley with all her heart.

            Nicole had always wanted a little brother and when Cameron came around she was delighted. Cameron has two other sisters so another girl didn’t exactly please him until he and Nicole got acquainted. This took a little time, but what resulted was worth it. She was his big sister and he more and more began to like her. Cameron lives in Ft. Worth and despite the distance he and Nicole are as close as a brother and sister. 

            Nicole married and birthed two beautiful daughters. The first, Anastasia, who is now 23 was nearly a carbon copy of her grandmother in thought, habit, and actions. Ana lives in Colorado Springs and it was rare when she and her grandmother didn’t have a weekly, or more often, phone chat.

            Like her grandmother, Ana enjoys painting. Janet was instrumental in her granddaughter’s brush-to-canvas development and encouraged the girl to achieve excellence in everything she paints. Ana has most nearly accomplished her grandmother’s wishes in much of her work. She is self-taught and her painting is first-rate. Her paintings are mostly of the still-life genre with a few oddities thrown in. Janet was very proud of Ana in many ways, but her artist’s ability was at the top.

            Aliyah is twenty and beautiful, like all women who carry the Clark DNA. She carries feminity almost to the extreme and is rarely seen not dressed and made up to the nines. Concerning a career and activities, she is trying to find what she likes most. She loves kids and, in time, will be a devoted mother. For now, she is developing her grandmother’s love of arts and crafts, and, like her mother, is a people person and an excellent party planner. She has some interest in cars, those pretty and fast, and probably will own something that will make most boys jealous. Janet was supportive of Aliyah and her adventures and offered suggestions for the pursuit of her desires.

            For anyone who knew Janet, they were touched by her sweet spirit, kindness, and generosity. She will be deeply missed by her husband, daughter, son, grandchildren, and all who had the honor of knowing her.

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Saturday, January 20, 2024

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