Obituary: Anita Orlando
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March 26, 1951 — January 15, 2020
One of San Francisco's kindest and loving spirits sadly left us after a long respiratory illness that she chose to manage reclusively. Arriving eager for adventure from New York City in the mid-1970s, unassuming Anita Orlando found her way into a gym and began weightlifting. She quickly developed a combination of physique and beauty that earned her a silver medal in women's physique at the first Gay Games in 1982.
Patrons of Twin Peaks bar loved Anita, where she waited tables for many years with her warm, talk-to-me-about-anything, caring style. She loved plants and worked as a gardener; adored animals and was a dog groomer. She was quite talented at painting and stained glass. Also a hospice volunteer at Coming Home, Anita helped everyone she could, and died at that same hospice.
She is survived by a family of cousins, including John Orlando, a former resident of San Francisco, along with two nephews. Her dearest friends Ellen and Linda of Berkeley, along with Lynnie, were her tireless caretakers, because they knew she was a special person. Indeed, Anita was.