Diane Nelson-Woodard, 68, departed this earthly life on Saturday, February 18, 2023. Diane passed peacefully at home at 798 South Plain Street, Ithaca, NY.  

Diane was born in Andalusia, Alabama, on January 19, 1955, to the late Lena D. Ward. However, she made her home in Ithaca for more than 40 years. Here, she was known as a sweet, caring, and kind woman to anyone she met. Diane was not rich in material wealth but she was rich in love and always found a way to give a little something to those she cared about. Whether it was a joke, a smile to brighten an otherwise gloomy day, a phone call to check in on someone, a ride home, a lottery ticket, a piece of clothing or jewelry, a word of prideful encouragement, or a warm hug, she always found something to give to someone.

Diane loved the Lord. She was a member and usher of Calvary Baptist Church and was proud to be of such humble service to God. Mostly, Diane loved family. She would gush with pride and unconditional love whenever she spoke of her children and their accomplishments. She would beam with joy at the mention of her grandchildren, with whom she enjoyed watching television shows and junk food. And she would cry with joy and admiration for her “sister,” the late J. Diann Sams. Among the top highlights of Diane’s life was to be surrounded by her children, grandchildren, close family, and friends to celebrate her birthday every year. 

Diane is survived by her children Tyrone Nelson-Fish (Kristy Downham) of Newfield, NY; Danita Butler-Fish, and LaMont Nelson-Fish of Ithaca, NY; sister Dora Welch of Niagara Falls and brother Charles Nelson of Middletown, NY; and her Aunt Arlean Nelson of Las Vegas, Nevada. She is adored and cherished by her grandchildren, special friend Johnny Wright who looked out for her, and will be missed by many nieces, nephews, cousins and friends. Rest peacefully as you reunite with the ancestors, Diane.

Calling Hours for Diane will take place at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, March 2, at Calvary Baptist Church, 507 N. Albany St., Ithaca, NY 14850. Homegoing Services will follow at 11:00 a.m. with Pastor Nathaniel  Wright officiating. In lieu of flowers, the family ask that donations be made in Diane’s name to Foodnet Meals on Wheels, 2422 N. Triphammer Road, Ithaca, NY 14850; Calvary Baptist Church; or to her grandchildren c/o of her daughter Danita Butler-Fish, 108 Pine Tree Road, Apt. B, Ithaca, NY 14850.

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