Fourth among the six siblings of a Scots-English family, Diana Peters was born in Vancouver and grew up on Read Island where the family lived as homesteaders. Diana would walk several miles back and forth to a one-room schoolhouse and row considerable distances, often on rough seas, for groceries. Growing up in this arduous, frontier environment contributed to her hardy, persevering constitution. “If a job’s worth doing, it’s worth doing right!” was a favorite saying of hers.
She returned to Vancouver to attend high school, scouring the floors of a family friend to earn her keep. It wasn’t long before her wanderlust prompted her to join the Royal Canadian Airforce and she was posted to Halifax as a meteorologist. After the war she moved to Montreal where she met her future husband, Vienna-born Alan Peters. They married in 1951 and emigrated to the US in 1953, residing first in Berkeley, California, later moving to Palo Alto after the birth of their son, Mark, in 1955. Daughter Julia was born 3 years later. Further stations included Evanston, Illinois and Mill Valley, California where the family resided before moving to Bainbridge Island in 2001.
Her love of nature inspired her to become a photographer and as such she also turned out memorable portraits – of Carlos Santana and Maya Angelou, among others, exhibiting as far afield as Moscow. She was a great lover of classical music and she and Alan were avid concert, opera and theater buffs. They also traveled extensively together and separately and did long hikes in New Zealand, Australia, England, Austria, Greece and Russia.
She kept up her passion for gardening for as long as her legs permitted. Her love of children led her to found her own nursery school at the Jewish Community Center in Palo Alto. She was a great cook and loved serving multi-course meals to family and friends, a proclivity she bestowed upon both her children.
Diana and Alan were active members of Unitarian-Universalist fellowships in each of the communities in which they lived; Diana served as chairperson of the board in the Marin fellowship.
She will be remembered for her vibrancy and staunch outspokenness on things that mattered to her and for her empathetic ear.
She is sorely missed by her children, Mark Peters and his wife Martina Warecka, both musicians in Vienna, Austria, Bainbridge residents Julia Maslach and her husband Steve, six grandchildren, Dillon and Jamie Maslach of Seattle and Oren Ogden, Damian Amarante, Ruben and Nira Adeana Peters-Pehme, all of whom live in the Canary Islands.
Arrangements are entrusted to Cook Family Funeral Home of Bainbridge Island, WA May her memory be a blessing.
Remembrances may be sent to:
The Bainbridge Island Friends of the Library, Island Volunteer Caregivers, Cedars Unitarian Universalist Church