Lilly Elizabeth Visniski, 80, passed away peacefully, surrounded by family on May 28, 2014. She was born on October 4, 1933 to Herman and Berta Summermatter in Eisten, Switzerland; the ninth of fourteen siblings. She is survived by Walter, her husband of 55 years, daughters Charlotte Hicks, Mary Rodney, Betsy Caza, and Nancy Skelley, and eight grandchildren.
She gave selflessly of her time, talents, and love to her children and grandchildren as family meant everything to her. She was a dedicated mom to synchronized swimmers from around the world for many years, making custom bathing suits and hair pieces for her daughters and other athletes. Proud to become a US citizen after immigrating from Switzerland, she reached her ultimate dream of meeting and shaking hands with President Ronald Reagan. She was a dedicated docent and volunteer at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in California for over seven years and was proud to call Nancy Reagan her friend. She was beloved by all who met her and was fondly referred to as the “little Swiss lady.” She will be deeply missed by family and friends but she will live on in our hearts and inspire us to become the best that we can be.
Services will be held on Tuesday, June 3, 2014 at Holy Faith, Catholic Church, 747 NW 43rd Street in Gainesville, at 9:30 a.m. Burial will be in California. In lieu of flowers, Lilly requests donations to Haven Hospice in Gainesville. The family wishes to thank the staff from Haven Hospice for their wonderful care and kindness. Arrangements are in the care of Forest Meadows Funeral Home (352)378-2528.
I am proud to call Lilly my mother-in-law. Her kindness enriched our lives in immeasurable ways, and we will follow her example always. Above all, I feel most fortunate to have apprenticed under the all-time best parenting expert for 3 months after the birth of our son. Lilly gave me the knowledge to be a strong parent and the courage to be a stay-at-home dad. She taught me how to be singularly focused on my children and push out the other distractions of life. I am eternally grateful for that lesson. God bless you, Lilly.
So very sad to learn of Lilly’s passing. I knew her from her years in San Diego. We
played tennis as partners and members of the same tennis team. She was a tough
energetic competitor. We all missed her when she moved away. She was so proud
of her daughters and their involvement in championship synchronized swimming.
She will be truly missed. Peace.
Please accept our deepest condolences. Words can not express the sadness you must feel in these painful moments, but be assured that we are praying for you and your loved ones every day.
Martha and family