Daisie Schurman Mitchell Rycraft of Rochester, NY, age 93, formerly of Ft. Myers, FL, died peacefully December 28, 2012. Born on October 22, 1919 in Exeter, NH to Rev. Stephen W. and Sophia (Parker) Schurman. As the fourth child, she moved with her family at a young age to Springville, NY where her father led the congregation at the First Baptist Church. Growing up, Daisie was active in church life, sang in choirs, played piano and violin and was a Girl Scout. She graduated from Springville High School in 1936 and attended Cortland Normal School from 1937-1939 majoring in Physical Education. She married Edward Mitchell in 1939 and had 5 children. The family then moved to the Rochester area.
While raising her family, Daisie managed a career in laboratory technology working for Gerber Baby Foods, R.T. French Co., and the University of Rochester. She also worked as Office Manager at Sears Roebuck & Co., The Heart Assoc., and Diamond Shamrock Labs. Her hobbies included sewing, knitting, crocheting and gardening. Daisie was known as "Mom" or "Nana" to friends and family alike. With an open heart she embraced many in her home. There was always room for one more at her table.
In 1964 Daisie married the love of her life, Nelson Rycraft. Their unity brought together their 8 children, 18 grandchildren, 29 great-grandchildren and 1 great-great-grandchild. They forged a relationship of love & respect and enjoyed 36 inseparable years enjoying their family, playing cards and board games and traveling throughout the US & Canada, sometimes camping along the way. Daisie & Nelson teamed up as members of Clowns of America and proudly participated in the Special Olympics. Daisie & Nelson retired to FL and after Nelson's death, Daisie returned to Rochester in 2002 to be near family.
Predeceased by her husband, Nelson S. Rycraft; son, E. James "Jim" Mitchell; daughters, Jean Pickens and Jeanne Sherman; grandson, Steven Sherman; granddaughter, Cheri Purcell. She is survived by 3 daughters, Barbara Surre, Joanne (Fred) Burnash, and Janet (Eugene) Kobos; 2 sons, Alan Mitchell and Roger (Brenda) Rycraft; son-in-law, Wells Sherman; 16 grandchildren, 29 great-grandchildren, 1 great-great-grandchild.
Daisie was a member of the West Henrietta Baptist Church & Choir, V.O.I.C.E., volunteer for Lee Co. Ofc. of the Sherriff, past Matron, Order of the Eastern Star Oatka and Eagle Star Chapters, NY, and member Order of the Amaranth, Lee Court #9, FL.
The family wants to thank the entire staff at The Friendly Home for their compassionate, loving care of Mom. There will be a celebration of her life, Sat., January 26, 2013 at 11:00am at West Henrietta Baptist Church, 5660 West Henrietta Rd., W. Henrietta, NY 14586. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to The Friendly Home, 3156 East Ave., Rochester, NY 14618, or West Henrietta Baptist Church.