Diana S. Pillsworth (nee Sikorski) lost her fight with pancreatic cancer — a battle she faced with courage and strength — on January 22nd.
Ms. Pillsworth was a woman who gave everything to her work and a devoted, loving mother to her family; a woman whose life was marked by the sacrifices she made caring for those she loved; and, above all else, a woman of great faith. She was a devoted parishioner of both Our Lady of Poland Church and, in recent years, the Basilica Parish of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary.
She treasured her reading groups at Rogers Memorial Library, playing bridge, her membership in the Horticultural Alliance of the Hamptons and the trips and time she spent with other members, working the Christmas Sale at Our Lady of the Hamptons School where she could watch her grandchildren learn and grow, the hours spent walking the track at SYS and her Bible study groups at the Basilica Parish of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary. She lived life to its fullest until it was cut painfully short by illness.
Diana will be remembered in the notes she left behind in books she lent to friends and family, in the blooms of plants she passed on to other plant lovers, standing ringside at horse shows watching her granddaughter live out her dream of riding, sitting in the stands watching her grandson play basketball or lacrosse, as a woman who loved yard sales, and as a someone who joyfully spent the last week of August enjoying all the sights and excitement of the Hampton Classic year after year. Most of all, those who knew her best, will remember her great love of God and the Blessed Mother and how she never lost her faith even when suffering greatly.
Diana was born at Southampton Hospital on May 15, 1945 to Chester and Alice Sikorski (nee Wolinski).
The daughter of a potato farmer, she spent her childhood days playing on the farm with her siblings and dreaming of having a horse one day.
After graduating from Southampton High School in 1963, she attended SUNY Albany where she studied French. One of her fondest memories was a trip to France made possible by the generosity of her parents.
She taught high school French for several years before marrying Robert Pillsworth and having two children, Valerie and Andrew. To support her family, she took a job at a nursing home in upstate New York and worked long hours caring for the sick at night and her children during the day. In 1980, she moved with her children back to Water Mill, and began a career working for the Dominican Sisters, caring for the sick and those in need. It was a job that she enjoyed deeply and did well, and she cherished her time spent with patients and their families.
In 2010, she retired and started a new chapter of her life; one that was filled with travel, gardening, book clubs, bridge games, and time spent doting on her two grandchildren, Harrison and Evelyn Hanley.
Those who came to know her in recent years would remember a woman who was busy living life, learning new things, looking forward to future trips and adventures and making many more memories with her family and friends.
She leaves behind her two children, Andrew Pillsworth, Valerie Hanley nee Pillsworth and her husband James Hanley; two grandchildren, Harrison and Evelyn; two sisters, Irene Sikorski and Loretta Gaston; her brother in law Jerry Gaston, niece and nephew Maria Cawley and husband Dennis and Jerry Gaston Jr. She was predeceased by her parents Chester and Alice Sikorski and brother Russell. All of Water Mill.
Her love of God never faltered even as she suffered terribly during her brief battle with pancreatic cancer. She will be greatly missed by family and friends.
Visitation will be held at O’Connel Rothwell Funeral Home in Southampton on Friday, January 24, from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. and from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.. Mass of Christian Burial will be on Saturday, January 25, at 9:30 a.m. at the Basilica Parish of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary Roman Catholic Church on Hill Street. Interment will follow at Sacred Hearts RC Cemetery in Southampton.
Donations may be made in Diana's Memory to the Horticultural Alliance of the Hamptons, Roger's Memorial Library or Our Lady of the Hamptons School.
To send flowers to Diana's family, please visit our floral section.
Horticultural Alliance of the Hamptons
P.O. Box 202, Bridgehampton NY 11932
Roger's Memorial Library
91 Coopers Farm Road, Southampton NY 11968
Our Lady of the Hamptons
160 North Main Street, Southampton NY 11968