Obituary of Diane Santomango
Diane Marianne Santomango (nee Gastonguay), age 80, of Lewiston, Maine, passed away on July 17 th , 2023, after a long battle with Lewy Body Dementia.
Diane was born on December 18th , 1942, to Leo and Jeanette Gastonguay (nee Caron) of Lewiston, Maine. The eldest daughter of 8, she adored her family and was a great help to her parents and siblings.
After Diane graduated 8th grade from Holy Cross School in 1957, she attended Marie-Joseph Academy in Biddeford in 1957/58, and then completed her studies with Ms. Mildred Wheeler graduating high school in 1962 with straight A’s.
Diane worked for a time at Blais Flower Shop, Ratheon, and Hillcrest Poultry Company where she met her future husband, Dominic M. Santomango. They married June 18, 1966, and made their home in the Lewiston/Auburn area.
They were both actively involved in church at Sacred Heart in Auburn. Diane loved to sing and added her voice to the choir on many occasions.
They both served as eucharistic ministers. They also became involved in Marriage Encounter and encouraged others to as well.
Diane and Dominic raised three children, Denise, Dean and Douglas. Their home was a haven for friends, family and various pets – whenever someone needed some TLC, shelter, a place to catch their breath – their home was warm and welcoming in large part to Diane’s generous and compassionate heart.
They spent many summer weekends camping as a family. Diane knew how to rough it in style, often making pies in the makeshift woodstove with freshly picked berries, homemade baked beans with franks, or her classic shepherd’s pie.
Diane was the quintessential party planner and decorator, hosting many family gatherings for any and every holiday; from Family Christmas Parties to New Years Eve Shindigs, to neighborhood Halloween parties, and Easter Egg Hunt Extravaganzas, she decorated, baked, and made each event an experience to remember.
She loved to crochet items to bless friends and family with homemade hats, scarves, dolls, and blankets. She was also quite crafty and enjoyed finding projects or recipes in her Women’s World magazine to try with her children, grandchildren, and sisters.
She took special delight in her godchildren, Francine, Rachel, Marc, Kim, Jessica, and Douglas – who were often recipients of her special brand of love and care.
She especially loved spending time with her sisters (Martha, Helen, Lucille and Rita) at Cathedral Ledge in North Conway, NH. Shopping, cooking, eating, playing games (no matter how dangerous SPOONS) she would dive in and be fully present with those she loved so dearly.
Diane was someone that you could trust with heart matters… which I believe is why so many friends would come to her in confidence, readily empathizing and offering timely wisdom when asked. Her faith gave her strength for her entire journey. And those who placed their trust in her, were prayed for diligently.
She could have been anything in this life, but she chose, and relished being, a great daughter, sister, wife, mother, godmother, and friend – and that is where she always found purpose and value. God-speed, Diane!
Diane is survived by her husband, Dominic of Lewiston, daughter Denise Vrana, and sons Dean (Stacie) and Douglas (Susan), her sisters Martha Gastonguay (Faucher), Helen Doyon (Jean Paul), Rita St. Amand (Ken), and brothers Jean Gastonguay (Mercedes) and Bertrand Gastonguay, her brothers-in-law Sylvio King, Tom Jacobsen, Ron Santomango (Berniece), Thomas Santomango (Mary) and Bulent Barut, her sisters-in-law Louise Gastonguay (Denis), Beverly Chasse (Roger), Trish Elgee, Tina Rea (Herb) and her grandchildren, whom she loved with all her heart, Sierra and Colton (CJ) Santomango, Natalya and Catlaina Vrana, Brittany Davis (greatgrandchildren Sophia, Harper, and Evelyn) and Jakob Santomango. And so very many nieces and nephews.
Diane was predeceased by her parents, her brothers Denis and Roger Gastonguay, her sister Lucille King, her nephews Douglas Turcotte and James St. Amand, her niece Tammy Sue Santomango, her sisters-in-law JoAnn Jacobsen and Gloria Barut, her brothers-in-law Marc Faucher, Mike Turcotte, and Norman Major, and granddaughters Heather and Amber Santomango.
A prayer service and celebration of life will be held at The Vista, 158 N Hills Ridge, Greene, ME 04236 on Sunday, July 30, 2023, at 1:00PM. Bring your dancing shoes! Yes, I’m serious.
In lieu of flowers, please consider donating in Diane’s honor to the Lewy Body Dementia Association. (Link will be posted on Facebook.) And/or to the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, a cause near and dear to her heart.