Serge Paul Petroff
(1922 - 2014)

Serge Paul Petroff

Harbin, China
November 1, 1922

California, United States of America
January 19, 2014

Guest Book
It was a great opportunity to work with Serge's bother Nick!

Serge's book Life Journey gave me an insight to his family & his life in Japan.
Thomas OBrien
March 24th, 2016
We would have liked to be with you to honor Serge's life, but distance prevents our attending. In the times that we were able to be with Serge and Jane, we enjoyed talking with him, hearing about his life and many travels.I was very glad to have one of his books which I enjoyed very much knowing he was a real expert.
My brother, Jere, and I came to know Harold and Polly Amidon when we came east to Cambridge to attend college. Harold and my father were first cousins. Polly and Harold were most gracious in inviting us to their home in West Newton to celebrate holidays and often enjoy a great meal.When Jane (as we knew her) and Serge were married in West Newton, I was privileged to serve as an usher in their wedding. This was a very memorable day, New England having experienced a hurricane the day before. There was no power in the church for the rehearsal, and the beautiful back yard of their home where the reception was to be held was flooded. Undaunted, the Amidons and Serge just moved the reception to the side yard, and everyone had a delightful time. Harold always made any occasion festive with his special drinks.
Over the years Jane kept us in touch through her wonderful Christmas letters. Dottie and I were able to visit Jane and Serge on numerous occasions when we visited CA where two of our children now live. They were always as gracious to us as Jane's parents. They entertained us at their Mill Valley home, Jane took us to the DeYoung Museum, but most of all, I enjoyed my talks with Serge, hearing abou his life and many adventures. They enjoyed many good yers together, loved their family very much, and Serge will be greatly missed.
We look forward to visiting Jane on a future trip to CA, and will be thinking of you all tomorrow for Serge's memorial.
Our love, Norman & Dottie Sears
Norman Sears (Friend & Relative)
March 22nd, 2014
It was a privilege and a pleasure to have known Serge and Bunny for over fifty years. We cherish the memories. RIP dear friend. Pat and Phin
Pat and Phin Kuhl (friends)
March 22nd, 2014
It was my great privilege to have Serge as my Boss for 14 years and as a friend for life! Who could forget those early Christmas parties when Serge & Bunny would throw open their home to all in the Financial Center Office. All invited and all came!The grandeur of his achievements are topped only by his greatness as a man. Clearly, Serge was one of the best things to ever happen to me in my life. Ron and Sheppie Woods
Ron Woods Woods (Friend )
March 19th, 2014
Dearest Bunny,

I was so sorry to hear about Serge's passing. I can't imagine how it must be for you after 50 years of such a close personal friendship and love together!!! I remember all those communiques from your exciting trips and adventures! I send you my deepest condolences and love in your hours of sorrow!

With deepest love, Johnnie
Johnnie Scheff (Friend)
March 14th, 2014
I knew I'd met someone distinguished and extraordinary when I met Serge five years ago. I so enjoyed working with him and his family, and appreciated our brief talks. Never just small talk with Serge--important books and issues of interest. I loved the stories that he and Bunny told about each artifact in their warm home. A beautiful couple growing old together, beautifully. I felt privileged to witness that. His passing is a true loss to those who knew & loved him.
Sharon Faccinto (Realtor)
March 7th, 2014
I was fortunate to have known Serge and enjoy his company at many ISEEES events. He was a good friend to the Institute and to me.
Barbara Voytek (friend)
March 3rd, 2014
Serge helped me launch a successful career and mentored me in the insurance business. I was always grateful for his counsel and encouragement.RIP
Steve Lewis (friend)
February 14th, 2014
Serge and Paul taught me rock climbing at 12 years of age. Serge would stress the technique of Emilio Comici. When I was accepted as a postulant in Yogananda's Self-realization Fellowship in Encinitas CA the house brother was the long time climbing partner of Emilio Comoci, Arne Lipovic (Brother Premamoy) I was absolutely flabbergasted beyond belief! What a joy to meet Serge and him sometime in the Beyond!
Russell Kohler (climbing student)
February 7th, 2014
Over many decades, I was privileged to know Serge and to benefit from his involvement with the UC Berkeley Institute of Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies. He was a man of great erudition and intellectual curiosity, with a deep attachment to Russia—both past and present. When he attended one of our events, he was always a gracious, informed, and lively interlocutor. We have lost a very special member of our community. My husband, Grisha Freidin, and I send condolences to Bunny and his entire family.
Victoria E. BONNELL (friend)
February 5th, 2014
The Museum of Russian Culture in San Francisco has been privileged to have Serge as a member of the Friends of the Museum group for several years. Serge collaborated with the Museum staff in publishing books about Civil War in Russia. He also made a presentation at the Museum in 2011 about his father General P. Petroff, and donated some of his valuable papers to our Archive.
We will miss him.
Nicholas Koretsky (Museum President)
February 5th, 2014
We shall miss you for ever. Our love to Bunny and family.
For all the good times we spent together as a family, thank you.

Annamaria, Desiree, Riccardo & Margherita
Annamaria Petroff (sister-in-law)
February 5th, 2014
My parents Saveli & Daria Lavrov were acquainted with the Petrov family back in the 1940's in pre-war Yokohama. My dad was also with the White Russian military and lived in Harbin and Shanghai, China before moving to Japan. Serge was an accomplished historian and an expert on the Russian civil war. He will be missed.

My sincere condolence to Bunny and the family.
George Lavrov (Friend)
February 4th, 2014
Пусть земля ему будет пухом!
Помню и скорблю!
Геннадий Канинский
February 4th, 2014
“Dear Banny, Bz, Paul and Greg,
Serge Petroff was a wonderful person. Memory about Serge always remains in my heart. I will never forget our meeting in San Francisco and Chelyabinsk. He was a true historian. Let he rest in peace ...”
Evgeny Volkov (Friend)
February 4th, 2014
Bunny, I was so sorry to read about Serge in the paper yesterday. We have many fond memories, kids weddings, dinners before the Opera and many museum events, which we always enjoyed. The world has lost a gentleman and a scholar and he will be missed.
Linda Cimmet (Friend/fellow docent)
February 3rd, 2014
Can't say I was a close friend, but I always liked Serge and found him very interesting. I think he and I were in Shanghai at the same time in the early '30s. The description of his life tells me much more than I knew. Bunny, I'm sorry for your loss, which can't be restored.
James Hammond (Friend)
February 3rd, 2014
As the patriarch of the Petroff family, Serge set the standard for my young family living next door at 11 Castle Rock Drive. He was my mentor, my hero and my friend. I'm looking
forward to seeing him again in heaven.

With love,

Jack Van Horn
Jack Van Horn (Friend and Neighbor)
February 3rd, 2014
Serge's bio addresses his voluminous accomplishments and the incredible journeys in his life, but to me he was the smart but unassuming, warm-hearted, next door neighbor. We were lucky enough to live next door to Serge and Bunny in Mill Valley for 13 years. Even with their own large family, they treated us like family. With all of our family on the East Coast, they became our West Coast surrogate family. No room to enumerate all the many ways that this was evidenced. Just suffice it to say that they were the best neighbors ever! Serge will forever hold a very special place in my heart, as well as having my admiration for the remarkable man that he was!
Janie Van Horn (Former Neighbor)
February 2nd, 2014
I was Jacque - part of the young and ambitious Bob and Jacque team who built the home at 10 Castle Rock across from your home perched on the beautiful rock. I remember your kind, energetic family with fondness. My grandmother was Margaret Dowd who you may remember as well. My condolences to the entire family.
Jacqueline Glassner (Former Neighbor)
February 2nd, 2014
The man was living history of the Russian Diaspora following the failed Russian Civil War which ended in the early 1920's. Although he was an Alumnus of the University of California at Berkeley, his memoirs and related material should be enshrined in the Hoover Institution Russian Archives at Stanford University.
George Barantseff (Also Whitge Russian...)
February 2nd, 2014
Hi Bunny,

I am sorry for your loss. Serge was truly a remarkable man! You have a beautiful family and will have wonderful memories.

Cheryl Bancroft
Cheryl Bancroft (Docent with Bunny)
February 2nd, 2014
my son marcus was a close friend of one of the
Petroff's sons. he had many sleep overs and many
sports together. what a great family and a
great dad. anne
anne robinson (Friends )
February 2nd, 2014
A life so unique, it defies description, rich with experience, accomplishment, and contribution—including a wonderful family raised with his beautiful wife Bunny.
Sandra Mardigian (acquaintance)
February 2nd, 2014
I knew Serge though Bunny and our book club. Talking with Serge and hearing his stories was for me touching world history up close and personal. What a fascinating, passionate, thoughtful and full life he lived.
Peggy Harrington (Friend)
February 2nd, 2014
Serge Petroff was man I greatly admired and thoroughly enjoyed. I plan to attend the memorial affair. Thomas Kewin
Thomas Kewin (friend)
February 1st, 2014
Book club friend and admirer of Bunny Petroff.
Kate Baker
February 1st, 2014
I'll never forget the times we had hiking and climbing with Mr. Petroff and the other scouts/explorers of Troop 34. Especially since I never quite overcame my fear of heights. He was such a great role model. What a terrific life. I wish I had the words to say a lot more, but, I'm just glad that I got to know Serge Petroff for a few brief years of his life.
Mark Coryell
January 30th, 2014
This is the memorial I set up for Serge Petroff. To sign the guest book, click on the "Sign Guest Book" button below.
Paul Petroff
January 30th, 2014
29 entries
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"Dear Bunny, Read and I were so sorry to hear of Serge's passing. He was always such a vital and interesting companion. I think of you as a "charmed pair" each contributing tp the other. All our best wishes. Harriett & Read"
Harriett Redwine
March 20th, 2014
"I meet "uncle Serge" throw my dear friend Desireè Petroff, from me and my family our deepest condolonces to entire Petroff family. Carmen, Stefano & Giorgio Nikita Castellani"
Carmen Arboleda
March 19th, 2014
"My deepest condolences to Bunny, BZ & the entire Petroff clan. Serge was a wonderful man, he will be much missed."
Josephine Mackenzie
March 8th, 2014
"Serge Petroff was a wonderful person. Memory about Serge always remains in my heart. I will never forget our meeting in San Francisco and Chelyabinsk. He was a true historian. Let he rest in peace ...”"
Evgeny Volkov
February 4th, 2014
"It has been my great privilege to meet Serge Paul(Sergey Pavlovich) Petrov when he came to the Urals, Russia, to visit the places where his ancestors lived and to share his life-story and family memories. God Rest His Saul. (Tsarstvie Nebesnoye)"
Julia Khmelevskaya
February 4th, 2014
"bunny, I was reading the sunday chronicle and saw serge'spicture. what a wonderful person. he was. love anne robinson"
anne robinson
February 2nd, 2014
"Our family has always admired Serge and Bunny, and their fine children. The loss of such a wonderful and accomplished partner and dad must be so deeply felt, yet he will continue to shine always as an exemplar of life lived fully and well."
Sandra Mardigian
February 2nd, 2014

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