Lonna L. Hitchcock, loving wife, mother, sister, daughter, grandmother, and friend, died on June 22, 2022, after a valiant fight against cancer. She was 73 years old.
Lonna was born in Albany, New York, on September 2, 1948, to John and Kay Leonard. She attended Bethlehem Central Schools, continued her education at Russell Sage College, and completed her master’s degree at the College of Saint Rose. Lonna began her elementary teaching career at Averill Park School District for two years before moving to Hunter Tannersville Central School, where she substituted and then taught kindergarten primarily for over 20 years. She was clearly gifted with teaching children and set a strong foundation of learning and curiosity with her hundreds of students.
Lonna and her husband Tom were weeks shy of celebrating 50 years of marriage. They made their home in East Jewett, where they raised their three children. Lonna loved feeding the birds, observing wildlife, and planting flowers. Often Lonna would venture on trips to foreign countries with friends, cruises with family, and car rides with Tom, always marveling at God’s creation and everything in it.
Lonna loved her family well and set an impeccable example of love, compassion, strength, integrity, and purpose. She was a keen observer, loved witty jokes, and was continually fascinated by people. Her sharp memory and exceptional listening skills allowed her to remember unique details about the people she met, bringing out the best in others. She faced life with optimism and a “can-do” attitude.
Lonna did not fear departing this world but looked forward to the promise of Heaven. Lonna is survived by husband Thomas Hitchcock, daughter Rebecca (Mike) Nelson, son Andrew (Phoebe) Hitchcock and daughter Alison Hitchcock, mother Kay Leonard, and sister Carol (Steve) Bolduc. Her beloved grandchildren are Lindy, Michael and Catherine Nelson, Valerie and Lincoln Hitchcock. She was predeceased by her father John Leonard. We are blessed beyond measure to have known, loved, and been loved by Nonna. We smile through our tears, recalling her encouragement to “not cry because it’s over, but to smile because it happened.”
To honor Lonna’s memory, read a book to a child and be kind to one another. In lieu of flowers, please donate to a charity of your choice in her name. Special thanks to The Community Hospice and St Peter’s Hospital Cancer Care Center for their exceptional care and expertise.