On what would have been Jean Zawistowski’s 92nd birthday, she was honored by several Camas Safeway employees who wore purple — her favorite color.
They included Holly Smith, the service operations manager, whose clothing on Dec. 30 included a purple plaid shirt.
She said Zawistowski often purchased macaroni and cheese and jojo potato wedges from the Safeway deli.
“She was a breath of fresh air and always smiling,” Smith said.
When she heard about Zawistowski’s Dec. 21 death, Smith held an employee huddle in her honor.
“She inspired us,” Smith said.
Zawistowski had lived in Camas for 70 years.
A flyer about her celebration of life service was on display near the customer service desk where employees clock in.
The information was also posted on the community board at Burgerville, in Camas.
General Manager Steffany Hoyt said Zawistowski ate two pieces of halibut and vanilla frozen yogurt there almost every day.
Zawistowski lived within walking distance of the eatery.
“Her family planned her memorial service here,” Hoyt said.
Employees would often sit with Zawistowski during their breaks and sometimes drive her to her house.
“She was interested in the lives of those around her,” Hoyt said. “She was an amazing listener, and the staff showed her respect.”
Zawistowski usually sat in the same booth. If that was already occupied, she sat in the booth next to it.
“I will never forget her laugh or smile,” Hoyt said. “Every part of her was glowing.”
Victoria Syverson, a Burgerville crew member for more than two years, said she and her co-workers had Zawistowski’s regular order memorized.
Syverson said Zawistowski had a sense of humor and remembered former Burgerville employees.
“She was all of our favorite, by far,” Syverson said. “Everyone liked her.”
Sometimes guests gave Burgerville gift cards to Zawistowski.
Krista Daniel, of Washougal, eats there with a dog walking group.
She would often see Zawistowski having dinner.
“We had a few birthday parties there for a child of our group, and she always looked on to the festivities with a smile,” Daniel said.
In mid-December, she paid for Zawistowski’s meal as a gift.
“She was in the order line behind me,” Daniel said. “I turned to her after I paid and said ‘Merry Christmas.’ She came by my table and thanked me as she sat down. She seemed to be a sweet lady.”