Michele Daschbach Fast: Daughter of Atherton, beloved family member and lifelong sports fan

by Contributed Content on October 14, 2011

Michele Daschbach Rooney

Editor’s note: Michele Daschbach Fast, who grew up in Atherton, was one of the victims of the shootings that took place in a beauty salon in Seal Beach, CA on Wednesday, Oct. 12. This obituary was provided by her sister Laura Daschbach Pitchford.

Michele Daschbach Fast, 47, passed away on October 12, 2011. In her passing, Michele leaves, Patrick,  her loving husband of 24 years, and their three incredible children, Patrick, 20, a senior at UC Berkeley,  Laura, 18, a freshman at UCLA, and Lisa, 16, a junior at Los Alamitos High School in Los Alamitos, CA.

Michele was born at Stanford Hospital, and grew up in Atherton. She attended elementary school at St. Raymond School and graduated from Sacred Heart High School in 1982. She graduated from UC Santa Barbara, and it was there that she met her future husband. It was Patrick’s career in the aerospace industry that ultimately led them to settle in Seal Beach, CA where Patrick and Michele lived and raised their family for the past 16 years.

The youngest of six children, Michele is survived by her parents, Howard and Leonore Daschbach of Atherton; sisters, LeeLee Cusenza of Pleasanton, CA, Lisa Fuerst and Laura Pitchford, both of Atherton; and brothers Rooney of Sunset Beach, CA and Mark, also a resident of Atherton.  Michele also leaves behind her father-in-law Stephen Fast of Pacific Palisades, CA, six brothers- and sisters-in law, 15 nieces and nephews and two great nieces.  Her Labrador, Otis, has also lost his loyal companion.

Throughout her life Michele was drawn to sports, both as a participant and a fan.  In her youth and through high school, Michele played tennis competitively for the Menlo Circus Club and Sacred Heart, and continued to play recreationally as an adult.  She was also quite a swimmer — usually the first one in the pool each morning at McGaugh School.

As competitive as she was as an athlete, Michele pulled even harder for her favorite teams. She was a lifelong San Francisco Giants fan in both good times and in bad. No one was happier than Michele when her Giants finally won the World Series in 2010. She was a dedicated supporter of all of the teams for whom her children competed.

In addition to the achievements of her own gifted children, “Shell,” as she was known to family and friends, took immeasurable pride in the scholastic and athletic success of her many nieces and nephews.  Michele followed them as closely as she could — in person when possible, but otherwise glued to the internet.  Not infrequently, Michele would find an out-of-town score or an online article about a game involving one of her nieces and nephews even before their parents would.

While perhaps initially coming across as a bit shy or reserved, there was no one with a better, quicker or cleverer sense of humor than Michele. An incredibly bright woman, Michele was quick with the one-liners that often left the listener a bit puzzled at first, but then laughing hysterically when they finally got the subtle punch line.  Then Michele would laugh heartily at her own insightful pun.

Michele has left us way too early, but she lived her short life so fully and selflessly, and made such an impact on the lives of others, that she will never be forgotten.  Her beautiful smile, hearty laugh and loving spirit will be with us forever.

Services will be held for Michele on Saturday, October 22, at 11:00 am at the Church of the Nativity in Menlo Park. A reception for family and close friends will follow at the home of her sister Lisa.

In lieu of flowers, please make donations to Michele’s favorite charity, SmileTrain.

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