Diana Burke Ladden (1951-2017)
Diana Ladden, daughter of John and Beverly Burke lately of Tucson, died unexpectedly at Berkshire Medical Center on June 6 th.
She is survived by Jim, her husband of thirty-five years, her sister Christine, and beloved pets Shea and Trilby.
Diana's first job after graduating from Smith College was as a go- go dancer in Newark, New Jersey. Her subsequent career path was unorthodox but highly successful.
Diana was in turn a bookbinder, retail manager, jewelry designer, milliner to the stars, gallery owner, novelist, and Pilates instructor. She won two national journalism awards during her years at the Columbia County Independent, and was well known both for her tenacity as a reporter and her charm. People loved to talk to her, even when perhaps they should have kept quiet when speaking to a reporter.
She retired in 2016 after five years as Columbia County's Commissioner of Jurors.
Her retirement was even more exuberant than her working life. Diana loved painting, gardening, opera, tennis and all artistic endeavors. She had a talent for turning out beautiful works from apparent chaos. She was a gifted baker and a generally lousy cook. People who knew her will be familiar with her random acts of generosity and kindness.
Her slightly odd sense of humor and infectious laugh will be greatly missed.
A memorial and celebration will take place at Peck and Peck Funeral Home on Saturday June 24 from 1:00-4:00 pm. 8063 Rt 22
Copake, NY 12516
In lieu of flowers, please make donations in Diana's name to The Berkshire Botanical Garden https://berkshirebotanical.org/get-involved/donate/ or The Columbia-Greene Humane Society https://cghs.org/donate/contribute/