Students and faculty at Silver Creek High School in San Jose are mourning the loss of one of the school’s beloved educators with the recent passing of Ralph Giannini, 75.
The longtime Santa Clara resident taught history classes, coached basketball, supervised dances and mentored generations of students at the high school.
Outside of school, he refereed Bay Area basketball games, was an umpire for baseball games and was a parishioner at St. Martin of Tours Parish. He attended St. Clare School, Bellarmine College Preparatory and Santa Clara University, where he received a doctorate degree in history. After college, he taught as a university professor and met his wife Tere Allen in Florida, where they married in 1976.
He and Allen later returned to Santa Clara, where they raised two children. Giannini and his family ran a liquor store, The Little Professor Bottle Shop, until he sold it in 1988 and returned to teaching.
Giannini picked up substitute teaching, sometimes landing inside one of his children’s classrooms, before starting as a teacher at Silver Creek High School in 1989.
Former students and colleagues poured out condolences on social media for the late teacher, saying Mr. G was an influential mentor in their formative years.
“A lot of students looked up to him,” said Mary Barrett-Wong, an associate principal at Silver Creek High School. “He gave them guidance and advice and always cared about how the students were doing.”
Giannini is survived by his brother, his two children, his nieces and nephews and his two granddaughters.
Services for Giannini will be at 5 p.m. on Sept. 13 at the Lima Family Santa Clara Mortuary. His funeral will be the following day at 9:30 a.m. at St. Martin of Tours Parish in San Jose.