Anna Gossett, a South Salem, NY resident for much of her life died on November 26th at 90 after a short illness. In her last years, Anna had been living near her eldest daughter in Massachusetts.
Anna had many joys in her long life butfound her greatest contentment in the company of her family. An only child who was born in 1928, she had five children and created the noisy, happy home of her dreams. Along the way she welcomed many others – children’s friends, her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, and neighbors - sharing in the largesse of her kitchen and embracing all with hugs. No matter how big her own tribe grew, Anna made everyone feel as if he or she was the most special person on earth.
Her Ridgefield Avenue home, which expanded with many additions over the years, was surrounded bylush vegetable and flower gardens. This was her kingdom, the métier for her artistic gifts. Anna shaped every nook and cranny incorporating the treasures and antiques she found on her travels along with whatever found objects caught her fancy.
As a child of the Great Depression, she had an artist’s eye and a tremendous drive to create from stained glass-making and illuminated manuscript to building bog gardens, and stitching memorable costumes for her kids and others. She took her paint box with her wherever she traveled and was an accomplished watercolorist. While tending to a family of seven, she never peeled a potato without examining the tuber for sculptural possibilities. Anna’s Christmas trees and traditions were legendary and she leaves behind a strong family tradition of gingerbread house construction.
Anna’s last years were a long goodbye as she slipped into dementia. However, at each new stop, her mischievous grin and warmth made her a favorite. A cocky witch’s hat for emergencies was still among her necessary possessions until the end of her life.
Every person who loved her is heart-broken at her departure. Yet, all are proud and privileged to have been the beneficiaries of her many gifts.
Anna is survived by daughters Susanne (Patrick) Dowdall of Wellesley, MA and Lorraine Gossett Loomis of Chicago, IL and sons Michael (Julia) Gossett of South Salem, NY and Thomas (Renee Bayha) Gossett of South Salem, NY, 11 grandchildren and 9 great grandchildren. Her beloved husband, O. Milton Gossett and son James Milton Gossett pre-deceased her.