December 20, 2019
Zoraida Dougherty, 76, of Hastings-on-Hudson, died Dec. 20 after a ferocious, tenacious, and frequently heart-rending eight-year battle with Alzheimer’s disease. Though petite, she was fierce, fierce in her love of her family and friends, her faith, and her kindness. She persisted in making the most of her time on earth, resisting limitations imposed by asthma and later, diabetes and Alzheimer’s. Born March 18 in Arecibo, Puerto Rico to Manuel Alvarez and Blanca Alvarez Diaz, Zoraida arrived in New York, age 8, without a word of English, and was dropped into the NYC public school system. At age 17, through a work-study program with Julia Richman High School, she began working at Irving Trust, where she continued after graduation for 41 years until she retired. Zoraida saw the world. She loved to travel, be it on cruises, vacations, mission trips or pilgrimages, with family or friends. She walked around her village, Paris, Machu Picchu, the Holy Land, in the footsteps of St. Paul in Greece and Turkey, and, finally, all around the facility where she spent the last phase of her life. She took painting and creative writing classes through the Tri-Village Continuing Ed program. She was an avid photographer, numismatist, and rock collector. And how she loved to dance! She loved all kinds of music, except for what she disliked. More than anything, Zoraida loved and is loved. She welcomed her kids’ friends into her home and took them in as family. She served humanity as a deacon of Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church. Her compassion and kindliness also was recognized by at least one scared and “scary” dog who adored her and a timid dog who ran to her and reveled in her attention at first sight, ignoring all others. She will be greatly missed by all of us, including by her devoted husband, Charlie; her beloved son Adrian Sierra, and his wife, Sarah, and their two children, Parker and Lilliana; her stepdaughter, Chris Dougherty, and her husband, Mark Good; her treasured great-niece and “other daughter” Alana Montanez; half-sisters Luz Flores and Elizabeth Diaz, half-brother John Diaz, and their spouses; and numerous nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her parents. Her laughter cascaded like the notes from handbells ringing out the finale of a great masterpiece. Her memory is a blessing, and we will not lose her moments in time, like tears in rain. In lieu of flowers, those who wish to commemorate Zoraida’s life can make a donation to the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America (https://fundraising.alzfdn.org/) or to the Joe Vedella Fund of Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church, dedicated to assisting the homeless, refugees and others in need, via a check to the Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church Attn: Outreach, with the Joe Vedella Fund listed on the subject line (7 West 55th Street, New York, NY 10019). Or, in her memory, laugh hard, run fast, be kind. Arrangements by Edwards-Dowdle Funeral Home, Dobbs Ferry, NY. Visitation, 5-9 pm, Fri., Jan. 3. Funeral Mass, Sacred Heart Church, Dobbs Ferry, Sat., Jan. 4, at 10 am.
Zoraida Dougherty, 76, of Hastings-on-Hudson, died Dec. 20 after a ferocious, tenacious, and frequently heart-rending eight-year battle with Alzheimer’s disease. Though petite, she was fierce, fierce in her love of her family and friends,... View Obituary & Service Information
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