Janice DeMeo Chester
July 19, 1959-June 25, 2020
Janice Chester left our world on Thursday evening, June 25th after fighting a heroic battle which included countless victories against an 11 year encounter with Breast Cancer that metastasized to the bones. She is survived by her husband of 31 years, Brian Chester, her son Andrew, daughter Sarah, sister Susan Strahle, her parents Al and Joan Demeo, and the dog she never wanted, yet grew to love, Gizmo.
Janice was from Long Island. She migrated to Richmond after college and we eventually met, went on a date, and never looked back. I was always fascinated beyond comprehension of how this tiny little lady had such a magical way with people. It did not matter the stature as to how important the person was, they gravitated to Janice, and thrived upon her opinion, and precious moments of conversation. Her father Al, has that same magic of which I have always admired. Janice had countless Best Friends, and those whom were blessed so, count yourself as such as your relationship with her was sacred. Her bestest of best friends is her sister Susan. She is Janice’s hero and Janice is her hero. Janice gave deep and compassionate love to her children, Andrew and Sarah. She learned to give that great and wonderful love as it was given to her from her Mother Joan.
I can hear a vacuum in the background and it will be there from time to time. But one quick peek at a photo of Janice or reflecting upon my time with her will quiet that noise quickly. Janice your family and friends will keep you alive, and The Legacy has only just begun. A memorial service will be held Sunday, June 28, 2020 at 4:30 pm-5:15 pm. A visitation will follow the service at Affinity Funeral Service Richmond Chapel, 2720 Enterprise Parkway Richmond, VA.
Per the COVID-19 restrictions for the State of Virginia, everyone over the age of 10 will be required to wear a mask while in attendance. In compliance with Virginia’s Phase II regulations, our establishment is limited to a 50% (150 people) capacity during the service. If you are not able to attend in person a link is included below to join via livestream.
Click here to join the livestream Memorial Service for Janice DeMeo Chester
Affinity Funeral Service Richmond Chapel
Sunday, June 28, 2020
4:30 PM – 5:15 PM
Affinity Funeral Service Richmond Chapel
Sunday, June 28, 2020
5:15 PM – 6:30 PM
So sorry for your unimaginable loss. My heart weeps.
Janice was blessed with a very close loving family. She was blessed with a quick wit and charming personality. She had many friends and was loved by so many.
What a wonderful person. Blessing on your whole family.
With our deepest sympathy for your lost. Janice was a beautiful woman. Will truly be missed.
Pam & Rod Moore
I’m so sorry for your loss. I knew Janice through the YMCA and we had many conversations about her heroic journey. Praying for peace.
My beautiful memories of Janice will remain with me , always,
and I will smile .
gregory spence winter
june 26, 2020
Damn it,damn it,damn it. Janice was one of a kind. My memories of her make me smile and long for the days when we had nothing but time and dreams. I am a better person for having known her. I wish her family peace.
Janice was truly one of a kind – I will always remember her for her uncanny wisdom and yes, Brian, amazing people skills! So very sorry for your loss.
I am so incredibly sad! I will always have fond memories of Janice showing me the ropes when I joined Pfizer right out of college. Janice always knew how to make the best out of situations and make everyone laugh along the way. Her spirit will always be remembered!
Truly one of a kind. Love to you all. She was so strong and will be so missed.
I am so incredibly sad to see this! What an amazing fight she fought. Janice was always so fun and kind. She also showed me the ropes when I first joined Pfizer out of college. I was in awe of how she would mesmerize a room of doctors with her spunky personality and wisdom. She will truly be missed by so many. Sending thoughts and prayers to Brian, Sarah, Andrew and Susan.
I love Janice with all my heart. My memories of our beautiful friendship will be with me always and forever cherished. Keeping your whole family in my heart and in my prayers.
I am so sad to hear of Janice’s passing. I haven’t seen her in decades but always thought of her as a beautiful person, inside and out. My condolences to her husband and children, to Susan, Joan and Al.
She fought the good fight and I am extremely saddened to hear of her passing. I am very sorry for your loss.
She was a warrior to the very end
Janice lived every day fighting her illness with grace ,hope ,and dignity .
God now has her as his special warrior
I am so sad to hear this news… I knew Janice from the YMCA.. … she was a strong woman..and fighting so very hard for so very long.. My deepest sympathies to Janice’s family… she will be missed…
My heart is broken over the loss of such a wonderful person. She “showed me the ropes” when I became a pharmaceutical rep back in the ‘90s even though we were competitors. I will never forget that smile and “sassy” attitude that I loved. Susan I will be here for you anytime you need me. To her other family members, my prayers and love are with you all.
She never came into the office with her drugs without a smile on her face. Weather you used her drugs or not. Such a beautiful sole that will be missed. Prayers for the family, Heaven gained an angle
I am so sorry for your loss. Janice was an amazing woman who could connect with everyone. She is one of the bravest humans that I have ever known and I am so blessed that I was able to know her. She is definitely in heaven.
So sorry to hear about Janice. She was such a beautiful person inside and out! I have know Janice for probably 30 + years, is I worked in doctor offices and the Short Pump pool. Janice could always brighten up even a rainy Monday!! And then there is Susan who always had Janice’s back. Sending prayers and condolences to you all.
My heart is heavy because of the grief your family is enduring but it’s also uplifted by the memory of such an amazing woman. So many people considered Janice a friend. So many admired her for the woman she was and the strong will that made nothing impossible for her. My prayer is that in the days to come the hole in your heart will be filled with sweet, funny and treasured memories. You will see her again…. in a Place where there is no pain or tears. Only joy eternal.
We are all better people just having any kind of relationship with Janice. She definitely was one of a kind. I have know Janice since her early days of Pfizer Many years ago. She was such an amazing person. Heaven has gained such a priceless angel. Sending prayers and hugs to you all.
I am deeply saddened to hear of Janice passing. She was one of a kind. One of my favorites. I will miss you sweet girl. Sending many prayers to her husband ,children,Susan and her parents .May God wrap his arms around you all . She will be truly missed.
We met in our early 20’s in Roanoke, waiting tables together. I was immediately struck by her sass, her inner strength, and her authenticity. I never knew anyone like her. Janice never met a stranger and people were always drawn to her. Her friendship was deep, never judging, full of kindness and love, and sooooo many laughs. Janice made me laugh…great, big belly laughs. Over all these years we still would reminisce over our crazy waitress adventures and laugh til it hurt. Throughout her battle, she never lost that sass.
Janice was a warrior, my hero.
Lifting Brian, Chet, Sarah, Susan, Al and Joan in prayer for great comfort and peace.
I’ll always treasure you, Hoghead, and will always think of you when I drink a Bloody Mary.
I am so very sad for your loss. The comments say it all-terrific: mother, wife, daughter, sister, friend, co-worker , and last but not least a fighter to the very end. RIP.
Janice was one of a kind. She had that ability to connect with anybody and make them laugh and love and be a better human being as a result. I will miss her and always will remember how kind and caring she was to so many.
Brian, this is so beautifully written. You along with Joan, AL, Susan, Andrew and Sarah surrounded her with love and care. I know in her last days she felt that from you all, and I’m sure was so proud. Janice had a strength In her that was unique and this helped her fight for such a long time. May Her strength be now passed on to you all to deal with this profound grief . Memories and her laughter will live on in everyone’s hearts forever, and bring you comfort in the days and years ahead. I’m certain her biggest wish was for you to go on to have happy lives, and I know Andrew and Sarah you will do that. We will, of course, always be here for anything you need! much love. the Peaden’s
My heart breaks for the family of this very courageous young woman who fought ‘the battle’ bravely with dignity, humility and a loving heart ~ a woman who put her family first and always looked beyond her illness to
the futures of the children she dearly loved and was determined to see grow up, to the dedicated man, her beloved husband who fought her battle, always at her side ~ this beloved mother and wife is at peace now but will always be with her family, her parents, her sister, who loved and bore her battles alongside her, their son-in-law and grandchildren ~ may they all find solace in the knowledge that she is peacefully resting now with GOD and HIS Angels and will watch over her loved ones always ~ May GOD keep you, Janice, in the Palm of
HIS Hand, GOD BLESS, GOD SPEED, sweet girl.
So sorry to hear the news about Janice. She was such a wonderful person. My thoughts and prayers are with the family.
Janice was an amazing person who will continue to live in all of our hearts. She was a fighter and an inspiration to many. She will be terribly missed.
From all of us: Vennie, George, Dimitri, Margaret and Tassos
I am so sorry for immeasurable loss to the Chester, DeMeo and Strahle families, and for all who knew Janice. She was a force to be reckoned with, and had a way with people that is impossible to replicate. She had a lot of Bests, this is true! But she was also a Best to many of us, which was a gift. I’ll never forget being little Sister #2. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all. Love and friendship, Anne and Mark Picard and family.
I can’t imagine the pain of losing such a wonderful person. I have never seen anyone faced with such adversity keep such a positive attitude. She will be a life long inspiration to all of us.
So sorry to hear this sad news. Janice was a fighter- she left us too soon.
We were childhood playmates, growing up 3 doors apart. I have countless memories of growing up and playing with Janice and others in the neighborhood. My heart hurts.
I am writing this with so much sadness. I remember having Janice and Mark in one crib when we all got together once a month. They were only days apart in age. Rest in peace Janice
Brian – James and I are so very sorry to hear this news. She was a beautiful strong kind woman. Your tribute to her was beautifully written. Sending much love your way. Gail and James Thomas
We were so saddened to hear of Janice
passing. Our hearts go out to Al, Joan, Brian & Susan. She put up an amazing battle. Hopefully, all the fond memories you had with Janice will ease the pain.
She is peacefully resting now up in that special place.
Chester family I am so heart sick over hearing the sad news about Janice! I only knew her for a season, but I remember her huge and stupendous love Janice had for people! Brian and Janice’s home was open for all. The friendship my Victoria had with Sarah was my ‘in’ to the family- Indian Princesses, PMS events and just plain hanging was the theme during that time in life. What a mighty woman in a small vessel! Brian, Andrew and Sarah know that this Lowry family is praying for you all as you go through life without your superhero! Please call on me/us if you need anything now or in the future – we love you!
The world will be a poorer place without Janice. She was a lovely, kind, generous person with a delightful personality. She will never be forgotten. She will always be in our hearts.
Janice was the first one from Pfizer to reach out to me after “The Merger”. I will never forget our first phone conversation which lasted over an hour. We hadn’t yet met, but she shared her experiences with me and, of course, had me in stitches! How surprised I was when we finally met in person to find out this lady with such a big personality was so tiny and petite. I am definitely a better person to have known you, Janice. Will miss you always.
Sending you all love and prayers . I am so sorry for your loss .
Such a charismatic “young” woman…full of fun, laughter and love. I will keep all of your family in prayer, Janice.
Love, Cindy Cook Adams
To the Chester and DeMeo families, we are so saddened by this loss, and grieve with you. My times with Janice were short and sporadic and yet each one left me with such fun, happy memories. The world was a lighter place with her in it. Sending you all hugs and prayers. With so much love, Sam, Matt and the boys.
Janice was such a special woman who impacted so many people. My thoughts and prayers are with her family and all who loved her so dearly.
Janice was a great friend. I met her first when I interviewed her for a job with Pfizer. Over the years our friendship developed and grew. She called me “Uncle Mel” which very affectionate. I will miss her very much. I will love her forever
This is a beautiful tribute, thank you for sharing it. It certainly reflects the love that I always felt from the DeMeos in my early years. I can see that Janice shared that love with everyone around her. My love to the Chester and DeMeo family.
Janice was an amazing woman. I can still hear her quick wit and incredible sense of humor. I loved her ability to be direct and honest in a compassionate way. I am sincerely sorry for your loss. May God comfort you.
I am unfortunate in not having had the privilege of meeting Janice, but to have raised a daughter like Sarah, I can only imagine how truly wonderful she was. My deepest sympathy and condolences to your family during this difficult time.
From my Mother and Father along with all my siblings – our hearts go out to Janice and the entire family !!!! ♥️ We all sheds some tears hearing the sad news. Mrs D / Mr. D – Susan what great memories we have of you all !!!!
We are so very sorry for your loss – Janice was truly one of a kind and will be so missed. Brian, you told Eric years ago – “take the damn trip, you may not be able to ‘one day’”. Thank you friend. We’ve said that to each other more than once.
Sending prayers for peace and comfort during this time.
So sorry Joan for this sad news. We haven’t been very good about keeping in touch but thru Mary Ann & Dutch , I felt like there was some updates. I’ve known you now for 80 yrs(?). Stay well and know my heart is with you & your family.
Our classmates love you deeply, and share our prayers for you and your family. Please accept our heartfelt condolences. We are not sure if Sunday’s Memorial service is COVID-Restricted, but we will find out.
Go With God, My Friend
Brian & Family, Susan, Mr and Mrs DeMeo:
Beautifully written tribute that really captures the essence of Janice, whose friendship I enjoyed since our earliest days in grammar school. We grew up pretty much across the street from each other. Always a smile, a joke, and lots of laughs. While we did not keep in touch frequently, I felt like we did through Vivian. Just a few years ago, Vivian invited me over for an evening with the DeMeo girls, and it was just like old times with ‘Janice & Susan’ from Ruth Place. I will miss my friend, but I know she will remain with us in our conversations and many good memories. Janice made the most of it, like she always did, spreading a lot of joy with everyone who was lucky enough to know her.
Please know that you are all in our thoughts and prayers. We are so saddened by this incredibly great loss. We will never forget Janice, her love of life and family, her smile and inner determination, strength and fight Our love and deep sympathy..
Dear Joan and Al,
I knew of the continuous battle Janice fought, and also of the love and support from you two and all the family. It is after all the love that we give and feel that makes our limited stay in the world worthwhile. May her memory live on and all others carry on.
Brian, thank you for painting such a perfect picture with your words of Janice and the family!
Janice has been my best friend since kindergarten. Our friendship is now in it’s 56th year!! She had a wicked sense of humor and a mouth that didn’t stop. She would talk to everyone and anyone. Janice was not shy about sharing her pearls of wisdom. She was the boss to sister Sue and I. I am part of the DeMeo family, they call me Number 3. We all know she was small but mighty. I am deeply sad but SO LUCKY to have had our friendship! She leaves me with great memories, ever lasting and unconditional love. That is something that will bring me JOY for the rest of my life!
Brian, Andrew, Sarah, Susan, Donnie, Elizabeth and of course Mr. & Mrs. D you ALL went on this long journey with Janice. As she is now resting you all need to take care of yourselves. Take the time to grieve but begin again to find beauty, feel happiness, LIVE life with the strength and love Janice gave you.
Love, Vivian (No. 3)
Expressed so beautifully, Brian. We’re so sorry for your family’s unimaginable loss. Janice’s endearing smile, sense of humor, special magic connecting to people, and love of family and friends will stay with us! We’re sure her loving spirit lives on through her family who were so precious to her! Joe and I hope knowing her life touched so many and made a difference, and that we care, brings some comfort to each of you.
Oh Jan! 🙁 Janice was like a big sister to me only smaller. Her heart was huge and she provided me sage guidance and counsel through job advice, relationship advice (“you better marry that girl Glennie B“) and life advice. I will so miss hearing her voice on the other end of that phone line. Rest easy Janice you fought like a champion every day, now rest. Until we meet again.
With Janice – truly size did not matter! Any room she walked into was both immediately too small and highlighted by her presence. Always loved to see just how she would light up any interaction with her infectious smile, consistently positive attitude and endearing personality. The world was definitely brighter with her around!
I’m so sorry for your loss. Janice was an unbelievable fighter and amazing woman! She could make anyone smile or laugh which was so infectious. I’m sending your family hugs and prayers. Much love to you all.
Our thoughts and prayers are with you Janice, Brian, Andrew, Sarah and your entire family. We love you Janice. God Bless you Janice.
She always wore a smile and brought happiness My deepest sympathy
It was an honor to call Janice my friend as well as competitor. My prayers and sympathies go out to her family.
I met Janice and Susan through their careers as Pharmaceutical Reps. Although they were far from “identical”, each had endearing qualities that always made me look forward to seeing each of them in the office. I offer my condolences to Janice’s family and friends for this world’s loss of a wonderful woman. I miss just knowing I’ll never see her again.
A tragic loss of a beautiful human being. We were always enthralled by her love of life. Such a positive person who always had good things to share with her family & many friends. Brian in your remarks, you compare her to her father Al. Excellent observation. I have know Al for nearly 50 years and she embodies all of the good things in her father. She put up good fight for her life over these many years. She will be missed by many. With deepest sympathy, John and Joan
Brian, “Chet”, and Sarah:
I can remember the first time I met Janice, and the Chester family and it was on the soccer field when Joe and Chet were about 7. We practiced at Longan Elem. and I remember meeting Janice and for the first time there. Janice was one of those people that you were immediately drawn to, and I know that you’ve heard that too many times to count. As Eileen said this morning, she was a force and one of the strongest people she’s ever known. I know that we didn’t live in the neighborhood, but we remained close through our kids and a lot of shared experiences. She was simply one of a kind, and no one has to tell you how lucky you all are to have her in your lives. All of the Grossmans are sending as much love as we have your way, and will always be ready to celebrate her life and to be there for any of you any time you want or need.
We are sorry to say that we won’t be there in person, but will be tuning in for the service. We are still taking care of Marks Dad who is turning 99 next month, so we have to avoid the congregations. We feel bad that we won’t be there, but probably would have to pitch a tent to be there early enough to get in anyway. She is a very very special person, and you all have been special as well. As we say in the Jewish religion, “may her memory be a blessing”. We are confident that this is absolutely true for all of you and the extended family who meant so much to Janice. WE LOVE YOU ALL! Eileen, Mark, Joe, and MIchael
I have lots of great memories of Janice, Susan, Aunt Jone and Uncle Fox. Rest In Peace Janice.
We are so incredibly sorry to learn about Janice’s passing. She was fearless and fun, witty and compassionate. We enjoyed being your neighbors years ago and cherish the memories. Please know you all are in our hearts and our prayers! I believe she would want you to live life and carry on her legacy.
Catherine and John McSorley
There are no words for your loss. I had the pleasure of knowing Jan through Suzie, and she was an amazing person. She was a fighter – small but mighty. There will be a huge void in your lives, but hopefully the memories and love she left with you will give you comfort. Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.
With love and deepest regrets,
I know how very close you were to your dear sister Janice and my heart aches for your tremendous loss. My deepest condolences to you and your family.
Brian – Kristie and I are extremely saddened to hear of Janice’s passing. We all know one thing, besides being an incredible wife, mother and caring friend, she was definitely a “fighter”. I met Janice in 1999, when I started working for Pfizer. She was my coach and arm-chair psychiatrist for 6 years. She was bold, frank, down to earth, humble and had that quick humor that we all loved. She was always there to provide advice, help me through some tough personal times and cheer me up. Her glass was always half full. She was a tiny “firecracker”, and she was loved by everyone who met her. Like me, an implant from NJ, she was a New Yorker implanted into Richmond. She never lost her spicy NY wit and swagger. A day into a week, a week into a month, a month into a year…..My biggest regret will always be not staying in touch. For that I sincerely apologize. She will be dearly missed. Take care Brian. Rest in peace Janice. Until we meet again.
I enjoyed knowing Janice. She was always a pleasure to be around. I know she will be missed by many who loved her. Condolences to her family.
Susan, Our thoughts and prayers are with you all at this difficult time. Love you with all my corazon.
Dear Brian& family, . Sending love and prayers your way. Janice was an extraordinary woman and beautiful inside and out. She was so kind and always brought a smile to my face and heart. Thank you for sharing her Service; it was lovely. Bob and I send our deepest sympathy. Love, Helen and Bob Auton
Thank you for being so wonderful. We will really miss you.
Russ and Sinnie Bhatia
3309 Hazel Tree Ct.
Brian and family
We learned of Janice’s passing today from Reed. She was such a sweetheart and always so fun to be around. I just loved her wit and sense of humor even when you knew she was not feeling well!
She will be greatly missed. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your children during this time.
Suzanne and Ted Tharin
Janice was blessed with a very close loving family. She was blessed with a quick wit and charming personality. She had many friends and was loved by so many.
Dear Brian and family, Janice was the most wonderful person in the world. I had so much fun with her over all these years. I know she was a fighter. My heart goes out to you, I am so sorry for your loss. My prayers are with you and your family .
From our first day at Pfizer training Janice and I were instant friends. What a special lady she was and a true fighter for sure!! My family looked forward to receiving your hysterical Christmas cards every year Brian. Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time.
Laura and Jim Lang
So sorry Susan about the passing of Janice you called on Cardiology before I retired. If you need to talk or anything you need I am here for you (263-2940).
Dear Joan and Al. Please accept our deep and sincere sympathy at this terribly sad time in your life. We will keep Janice and her family, you And Al in our prayers. With love Florence & Al Salerno
Dear sweet Janice! I am so saddened by this news. I wish you, your family, and the DeMeo’s peace and comfort. ❤️
Brian — So sorry to hear that Jan lost her courageous battle. I know your family through my friend Suzie Luxton and met Jan a couple times. Most recently at a cancer event where she was her usual bubbly and charming self. Blessings and God’s comfort to you all. Jan already has hers.
July 19,2020….today Janice would have been 61 years old. 🎂. I’m thinking about her family today especially Mr. & Mrs. D.
Janice and I would have connected today in some way, phone, text or a surprise visit. We will all be missing her today even more!!!