Cover photo for Jeannette Santagato's Obituary
1927 Jeannette 2022

Jeannette Santagato

September 15, 1927 — June 2, 2022

Sunset Hills

Jeannette Santagato (née McChesney) passed away on June 2nd, 2022 at the age of 94.

Jeannette was born September 15, 1927, to Byrd McChesney, a carpenter, and Gertrude McChesney, a teacher, in Dawson Springs, Kentucky. In 1950 she married Pat Santagato, and they welcomed their first son, Dwight in 1954. Shortly after, the family of three moved to St. Louis, where they welcomed a second son, Ralph in 1958.

Jeannette and Pat were some of the first members of Affton Christian Church, which they joined July 17, 1955. Jeannette was unable to attend services during her advanced years, but she continued her membership her entire life.

Education and hard work were important values to Jeannette, so once Ralph started high school, she began working in the offices of several small businesses and finally in an elementary school library while taking a few college classes. She later went back to school full time and graduated in 1984 with her masters in speech therapy at age 56. She went on to help children with speech and language challenges at Maple Grove Elementary for 10 years.

For the past decade Jeannette lived in Friendship Village, where she had many wonderful friends who she loved to play games with, particularly scrabble. She often broke the rules, encouraging her opponents to do the same, because the real point of the game was to have fun no matter who won. She loved to eat good food, particularly sweets, which she’d ask for as gifts for Christmas and birthdays. Annually, when possible, she threw a family reunion and nothing made her happier than seeing her whole family having a good time together.

Jeannette was preceded in death by her parents, husband Pat, and two sisters, Anna May Nesmith and Pansy Watson. She recently spoke of family and friends that had passed and was excited to see them again.

Jeannette is survived by her two sons, Dwight (Debbie) Santagato, and Ralph (Paulette Walker) Santagato; her grandson, Devon (Brittany) Santagato, and her many beloved nieces and nephews. She was a doting mother, grandmother, and aunt, and was very proud of her family. Jeannette spent her last few days surrounded by her loving family and receiving messages from her many friends who adored her. She had a feisty, determined spirit that never waivered, and will be remembered as a kind, generous, and strong woman by all those lucky enough to have known her.

In lieu of flowers memorial donations may be made to Affton Christian Food Pantry, 4960 Heege Road, Saint Louis, MO 63123.

Services: All services will be held at John L. Ziegenhein & Sons, 4830 Lemay Ferry Road, St. Louis MO 63129. Visitation will be Monday, June 13, 2022, from 4:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. Funeral Service will be Tuesday, June 14, 2022, at 10:00 a.m. Interment at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery.

Jeannette's family request masks be worn to her services. Thank you for your cooperation.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Jeannette Santagato, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Monday, June 13, 2022

4:00 - 8:00 pm (Eastern time)

John L. Ziegenhein & Sons South County

4830 Lemay Ferry Rd, St. Louis, MO 63129

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Funeral Service

Tuesday, June 14, 2022

Starts at 10:00 am (Eastern time)

John L. Ziegenhein & Sons South County

4830 Lemay Ferry Rd, St. Louis, MO 63129

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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