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Friday, March 31, 2023
3:00 - 6:00pm (Eastern time)
Jane Sara Koota was born on May 23rd, 1936 to Dr. Jacob Aaron Koota and Annabel Opler at Israel Zion Hospital in Brooklyn, NY.
Jane was the firstborn child of the couple, who resided in Brooklyn, NY. Jane was two years old when Judith 'Judy' was born, and the two sisters were inseparable, even when they were fighting. Judy remembers that they enjoyed playing house, and also listened to a weekly radio show called 'Series of the Lives of the Composers'. Jane and Judy were both given piano lessons and Jane flourished, while Judy greatly disliked it. Jane played the piano almost every day of her life. Paul Henry Koota was born in 1947, and was the blue eyed blond boy that the couple cherished. The family was Jewish, and celebrated the traditional holidays. Although, as I grew up I recall there was always a small Christmas tree or some indication of Christmas in my grandparents home. The children attended Brooklyn Friends School.
Mom started college at Upsala, where she met Pasquale Dominick Pacillo, our father. Mom began to take the courses required to marry a Catholic, and she embraced Christianity with an open heart. Our grandmother, Josephine DelVecchio Pacillo, embraced Jane and helped her adjust from a wealthy Brooklyn young lady to this large, loud Italian family that she soon became a part of. Our Dad was the 3rd of 8 children, and there was a lot of loud activity in the house. I am sure that Grandma tried to teach Mom to cook, but it did not sink in too well, however later she became a wiz at TV dinners and instant breakfast. Our parents moved to California with Jack (Dr. Koota), Judy and Paul in the late 50's, and Jane gave birth to her first child. Joan just happened to be born in California, for the New York Kootas moved back to Brooklyn and there resided. Jane and Pasquale, (Patrick, as he was known), lived in Queens, while saving for a house on Long Island. Andrew John was born in 1959, and Mathew Gerald came in 1964 and this completed Mom's family. She was a stay at home mom, we had our Ardsley house in Stony Brook, and grew up with the most loving, kooky mother any kids could want in the 1960s.
Our mother would stay at home until about 1969 or so. When she returned to college and graduated Valedictorian of her RN program from Suffolk County Community College. With us 3 children growing up without a whole lot of supervision, we did a lot of crazy things, which our mother ALWAYS knew about! Our mother taught us each how to play the piano, which was one of her many gifts to us, and we had lessons too. We played classical piano, took lessons and some of us still play. My sweetest memories are of me dancing around in the living room, while Mom played. Later in her life, when she was nursing home bound by her conditions, I tried to make sure there was a piano in the wing she was on, so she could play and I could dance or I could play while she danced. Dad and Mom divorced and she met Robert Cogdill, who became her 'Pseudo-Spouse' that is what I called him, but they never married, and they were together in Knoxville TN for about 23 years, until he passed away in 2002. Bob and Mom loved each other, and Andy moved to Tennessee to be near his mother, while Matt and I pretty much remained in Florida. The trip to Tennessee was fun and a 10 hour drive if you did it at night. Mom returned to Florida for Nursing Home placement and she has been comfortable, giving love and great nursing care to all around her.
Mom gave the gift of her incredible intelligence and medical knowledge to everyone. She was an advocate for her roomates and her peers, even when they didn't really need her help. She fought for the underdog, and made sure the nurses did their job correctly. Our mother spend her later years smiling and nurturing those around her. One of the funny stories I heard was that although she did not play piano much, she would still play the little keyboard while she was in bed, but it was always on the DEMO, repeating over and over, until one of the people in nearby rooms would beg the staff to take it away from her. Jane is survived by her sister, Judith Driscoll, who resides in Charlotte, North Carolina. Her 3 children, me-Joan Patricia Pacillo Thompson, Andrew John Pacillo and Mathew Gerald Pacillo are all thriving. Jane's grandchildren from Joan are Sarah, Melissa, Jacob and Jessica Brugger and Ryan and Katy Thompson. Andrews children are Anthony John Pacillo and Tammy Jo Pacillo. Mathew's children are Christina Pacillo, Joseph Pacillo and Tara Pacillo. For the great grandchildren list, we will separately name them, as the posterity has continued.
Jane loved her Savior Jesus Christ, and was surrounded by a loving hospital staff at the last hours of her earthly life. The nurse caring for her was Sarah, and she allowed me to speak with Jane on her cell phone at the end. Her nurse told me they were lifting her up in prayer, and that one of them was holding her hand when she 'transitioned'. She received a blessing recently, and the hospital chaplain was brought in to see her prior to her passing. Jane is surely at peace with Jesus at this time and through eternity.