Westchester native Diana Louise Jones of Hyde Park, a former high school and Division I college basketball star, died on Wednesday, Dec.20. She was 56.
Diana was born on May 26, 1961 in Mount Vernon, the daughter of Joan Elizabeth (Hutner) Jones and James Henry Jones. She was predeceased by her mother n October, 2004 and her father in August, 1988.
Diana was educated in the Wappingers Central School District, where she graduated Roy C. Ketcham High School in June of 1979. Diana was an avid sports enthusiast and an excellent basketball player who starred on the Ketcham girls basketball team. She then attended Dutchess Community College, where she was recruited and received a basketball scholarship to play at Marist College, in Poughkeepsie, where she earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications.
Diana was a woman of faith, and after completing her degree at Marist College, she was chosen to play semi-professional basketball in Europe. This was before the days of the WNBA and she was a coach for a woman’s basketball team in Ireland.
Diana had various successful careers and was employed at Verizon Wireless as a business sales coordinator. She was an excellent employee and won numerous awards for selling the most accessories and was recognized many times as employee of the month.
Diana is survived by her best friend, of over 25 years Jacqueline Reilly, the daughters she raised: Tiffany Lawrence and Clavia Jourdan. Her four sisters -- Carolyn Jones, Joanne Jones, Laura Virginia Lee Jones and Naomi Jones -- as well as nieces Alexa Griffin and Elizabeth Nelson and her godson Andrew Parker.
On Thursday, Dec. 28, the viewing will be held at 10 a.m. followed by the funeral service at 11 a.m. at Ebenezer Baptist Church, 15 Smith Street, Poughkeepsie. The Interment follows immediately after at Union Cemetery, 1076 Violet Avenue, Hyde Park. Arrangements are being handled by Joseph J. Darrow Sr. Funeral Home Inc. 39 So Hamilton St Poughkeepsie, NY 12601 845-452-1840. To send an online condolence, please visit www.darrowfuneralhome.org .
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