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Obituaries March 18, 2010

Posted on 19 March 2010

Diane Gorodnitzki

Diane Gorodnitzki, 60, of Shelter Island passed away quietly at home in the early morning of January 24, 2010. She is deeply missed by her devoted husband, Kenton, and son, Alexander Gorodnitzki. Her quiet passing after a courageous, 17-year struggle with cancer remains a memorial to her love of life, her loyalty to family and friends and the natural world she documented through decades of landscape and nature photography.

Raised on Central Park West in New York City, Ms. Gorodnitzki was an only daughter of Sascha and Virginia Henderson Gorodnitzki. The family spent summers in Sagaponack and purchased part of “Sunset Hill” farm on Sagg Main Street in 1956. After graduation from the Walden School in New York, she moved to the East End full-time. In 1986, she married Kenton van Boer atop Big Crow mountain in the Adirondacks and her son was born two years later. She was a caring wife and mother who despite her illness put her family’s needs and often others before her own.

Ms. Gorodnitzki was recognized for her portraitures, photojournalism, and landscapes that captured the beauty and fragility of Eastern Long Island. She majored in photography at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore where she studied with Jack Wilgus and Jaromir Stephany. Ms. Gorodnitzki worked with the Juilliard Drama Division and John Houseman’s Acting Company where she photographed over 35 theater productions. She also documented her father’s professional piano teaching career at Juilliard over the course of several years.

Later in her career, she focused on nature and landscape photography, inspired by the beauty of the East End and her travels to St. Croix, the Adirondacks and Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. She collaborated with numerous local and national environmental organizations such as The Sierra Club, Group for The East End, Peconic Land Trust and Friends of The Earth. Her solo exhibitions were held at the Library and Museum of Performing Arts at Lincoln Center in New York, East Hampton’s Guild Hall, Museum of Long Island Natural Sciences at SUNY Stony Brook and East Hampton Town Marine Museum among others galleries.

Ms. Gorodnitzki’s passion for nature, bird watching, baseball (a life-long Yankees fan), national politics, and environmental advocacy will be remembered by family and friends.

The family will have a Celebration of Life with music, photography and conversation on March 20 at 3 p.m. at the Unitarian Universalist Meeting House, 977 Bridgehampton/Sag Harbor Turnpike, Bridgehampton. Contributions in Memory of Diane Gorodnitzki may be made to East End Hospice, P.O. Box 1048, Westhampton Beach, 11978.

Beatrice Kimelman

Beatrice Kimelman, 79, died in December 2009 in New York City. For many years she worked as a therapist at the Harborview Counseling Center in Sag Harbor, treating children as well as adults. She also was a teacher, supervisor and administrator at the August Weber Institute for Training in Psychotherapy.

Ms. Kimelman was born September 8, 1930 in Brooklyn, N.Y. She earned a degree from Brooklyn School of Law as well as a social work degree from the Hunter School of Social Work. She loved to travel with her sister Leah, take long walks through Sag Harbor, create beautiful needlepoint art and spend time with her nieces and nephew and their children. At the time of her death she was residing in Manhattan. She is survived by her sister Leah, three nieces, one nephew and their seven children.

Catherine O. Berkoski

Catherine O. Berkoski, known as Kattie, of East Hampton died at Southampton Hospital on March 10. She was 66 years old.

Born in New York City on May 20, 1943, she was the daughter of Patrick and Ruth Bennett (Beckwith) O’Sullivan.

Mrs. Berkoski worked for many years as a medical practice office manager, including in the offices of Dr. Semlear, Dr. White and Dr. Siegler.

She was an EMT for the East Hampton Village and Springs fire departments, and was a member of the American Legion Auxiliary Post 419.

Mrs. Berkoski is survived by her husband, Gerald J. Berkoski, their children Teresa M. Schurr of Springs, Tina M. Ozturk of Montauk, and Tara M. Mansir of Springs, and stepdaughter Lisa Berkoski of Ashville, N.C.

She is also survived by brothers George O’Sullivan and John O’Sullivan, both of East Hampton, and Patrick O’Sullivan of Florida. She was predeceased by siblings Pauline Hamill, Thomas O’Sullivan and Daniel O’Sullivan.

She is also survived by nine grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.

Visiting was on Sunday, March 14, at Yardley & Pino Funeral Home in East Hampton. Interment was private.

In lieu of flowers the family asks that memorial donations be made to East End Hospice, American Legion Post 419 or East Hampton Village Ambulance.

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