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Diane Boyden Pesso
  • 86 years old
  • Date of birth: Aug 8, 1929
  • Place of birth:
    Boston, Massachusetts, United States
  • Date of passing: Mar 4, 2016
  • Place of passing:
    Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, United States
Have compassion for all, even the tiniest life forms on the planet & seek out and celebrate (not fear) differences among people.

This memorial website was created in memory of our loved one, Diane Pesso, 86, born on August 8, 1929 and passed away on March 4, 2016. We will remember her forever.

We will arrange a memorial service for sometime later in the year and will post the date and place when our plans firm up. 

Diane Boyden Pesso, beloved wife of Albert Pesso and daughter of Martha L. Birchby and F. Wendell Boyden died of ALZ on Mar. 4, 2016 in Chestnut Hill, MA. Born Aug. 8, 1929 she leaves her husband, 3 daughters, Tana Pesso, Tasmin Pesso, and Tia Pesso Powell, and 4 grandchildren, Chris F. Edley III, Kyra Chu Pesso, Jono Pesso Chu, and Xoren Pesso Powell.

With her powerful intellect, compassion, and fiercely independent and creative mind she along with her husband created Pesso Boyden System Psychomotor (an interactive process that creates new body-based memories to heal emotional deficits of the past) in the early 1960's.

Diane began her career in the field of dance. As a young woman, she studied under the legendary modern choreographer, Jose Limon, and was a favorite of the renowned Creative Movement pioneer and teacher, Barbara Metler. In high school she ran her own dance studio. Winning numerous scholarships, she continued her dance education at Bennington College under Martha Hill, founder of Julliard's dance department.

Diane went on to teach dance at Wheaton, Emerson, and Boston University's Sargent colleges. In the 1950's she and her husband established a dance school in Quincy with 500 students which taught primarily modern dance, creative movement, and choreography to children and teenagers. 

She was a PBSP therapist at McLean Hospital, the Director of Psychomotor Therapy at the New England Rehab Hospital (now Spaulding Rehabilitation) Pain Unit, had a private PBSP practice, and as Vice President of the Psychomotor Institute trained psychotherapists in PBSP certification programs in America and Europe. 

In addition, as a dedicated utopian thinker Diane was years ahead of her time in her attempts in the late 1960's to create a multi age, race, creed, and income community that would have conserved land and have offered shared space for education, art, cooking, and other community activities.

A free spirit with a deeply compassionate wish to heal all the wounds of the world, Diane will be deeply missed by friends and family who remain inspired by her life's work and unique soul.

A memorial service will be held in late Spring. 

Anyone kindly wishing to make a donation in Diane's memory and honor may do so here: http://gogetfunding.com/support-for-al-pessos-medical-recovery-expenses/

 

Memorial Tributes
This tribute was added by Lowijs Perquin on 8th August 2016

"I honour Diane for her contribution to PBSP. The work with Ideal Parents came from her. She always has wanted that PBSP would contribute to the society, bringing it to schools and families. For her leading a structure was: supporting the client to lead her own structure."

This tribute was added by Rose Archambault on 8th August 2016

"Happy Birthday.  Hope you are having a wonderful party (with Al now too) to celebrate.  My love.  Rose"

This tribute was added by Marina Eddy on 8th August 2016

"Thinking of all the wonderful times at Strolling Woods and in Boston!  Healing thoughts and warm arms around all the family members at this time.  Marina"

This tribute was added by Lilly Blake-Cote on 15th May 2016

"I worked for Dianne and Al in the late 70's and early 80's-We had so much learning to do and Diane was our mentor-We were not college educated-we were world educated office helpers that cooked, shopped, kept books and listened when Diane needed to share her enthusiastic plans for Strolling woods i FRankli.  Years would pass-I would see diane in the public and it was as if I saw her that morning-we'd talk and catch up.  Friendly-Outgoing-knowledgeable-all lead up to the name DIANE PESSO.  You will be missed Diane.  I did not know you had passed until your name was brought up while talking to my MA cousin and she told me-Googled and here you are. God Bless and R.I.P.  Lilly Cote"

This tribute was added by Rose Archambault on 28th March 2016

"My Dear Al.  When I heard of Diane's passing it was a very tough day for me.  I had worked with you and Diane for many years, starting when you were in NH on the lake and continuing on to today.  Diane and I worked together in New Hampshire every month to keep the accounting records up-to-date and accurate.  Diane was a great person, a wonderful wife and a good friend.  When she started with ALZ, it broke my heart.  I know you will miss her terribly.  When you lose a spouse, especially after being married for a long time, it is a very difficult situation to find yourself in.  Just remember, there are a lot of people out there who love you and support you.....your children, your grandchildren, your friends, your colleagues.  Diane, you are now at peace.  Whisper in God's ear to help your family get through this time.  He will listen to you because of the wonderful and precious life you led here on earth.  My love to all the family."

This tribute was added by Katharina Taeger on 15th March 2016

"Dear Al within your family,
it makes me sadly touched and a little bit shy, realizing that Diane was going away from this world - even when she stayes in our mind,
because she was such a wonderful and helpfull person, not only in and for PBSP. Shy because I did not took the opportunity to meet Diane and to get to know her. Now I am very glad and full of respekt seeing all these marvelous pictures out of her and your life! I feel once more your deep connection and loyalty to one another, your power and dance in your life....
Best wishes to you and your health, Katharina Taeger from Freiburg"

This tribute was added by Anne Polchau on 15th March 2016

"Dear Al,  thank you so much for telling us of the treasures of your wife in our PBSP-seminars. I am thankfully giving good bye to her transitus. And I am in spirit on your side hoping that the sadness grows into loving connection with her.
Diane - Al´s wife!  We owe the the ideal-parents-idea, the heart of the therapie, I think.
We got to know and love it!
In this commemoration we are connected-
like a world-wide PBSP- group.

A diamant of therapy - a Diane- Diamant!

Anne Polchau"

This tribute was added by Andy Silver on 14th March 2016

"During our 25 annual weekends with Al and our South Carolina training group, I was continually aware of Diane’s presence at Strolling Woods. It’s how Al’s eyes would light up when mentioning her and how from their creative life for 60 years has emerged this vibrant tool called PBSP which would enable me to slay so many dragons."

This tribute was added by Ineke Oppenoorth on 14th March 2016

"Dear Al and your beloved family,
Last Saturday we, in the Netherlands had our annual meeting and Diane was remembered with a beautiful moment of silence. It was mentioned that Diane was the creator of the "Ideal Parents". Unfortunately I only met Diane at the last Congress, in Bergen, when she was already quite ill. I do understand though, through all I have heard, how great her importance was and is for all of us therapists and clients, living on in all the structures we have seen or have had. Dear Al I hope you will find some strength in the time ahead to deal with your sorrow. Ineke"

This tribute was added by Kate McGeever on 14th March 2016

"Dear Al, I have been thinking of you so much these days. I never met Diane other than through your gorgeous descriptions of her and tender loving references and stories about her and your life together. I love how your eyes twinkle when you speak of her. You are always so adamant that her name not be dropped when referring to the method and speak of her always with such pride and love. Her memory will live on in the wonderful PBSP which you together created and which we are the lucky benefactors of. I am so glad you found each other. warm wishes Kate"

This tribute was added by Elisheva Dan on 14th March 2016

"Dearest Al:

I have been out of touch with you, but not the work, which, I think is knitted in my bones.  So, I just learned about Diane's passing.  My heart goes out to you and your family.  I hope your grief is not too hard on you.
Diane had lovely things to say to me.  I remember once she helped me to be less tentative.  I don't remember what it was about exactly but the overall impact was that I felt stronger.

Much love to you, Al.

Eli Dan"

This tribute was added by Sybille Reiche-Wetzel on 14th March 2016

"Dear Al and family,
I met Diane during my PBSP training in Basel in the midst of the 1990s, when she trained us in using the PBSP exercises. I remember very well her lovely outspreading, vivid energy, her tremendous care in teaching us very detailed the application of the exercises and how she gave us a deep sense of the meaning of the exercises within the Pesso-Boyden-System. Most of all in my perception Diane was present in every workshop with you, Al. It touched me every time when I felt your affectionate love for your wife, your strong connection to each other, your loyality towards her and your constant emphasize on her invaluable contributions to your wonderful work. With great compassion I am with you in these days and I wish you loving and caring company beside you.
With love, Sybille"

This tribute was added by Kendon Smith on 13th March 2016

"I remember Diana particularly in relation to a warm exchange we had looking at the book: "Living Treasures of Japan", shared both because of the visual sensibilities manifest in her home and and out of a sense of Diana and Al as Living Treasures of the United States.  These tributes give me greater knowledge and appreciation.  Thank you."

This tribute was added by Sandy Canfield on 13th March 2016

"I have prayed a silent prayer for dear Diane every day since she passed.  I was so glad to see her when I was last in Boston just a few years ago.  I told her how much gratitude I had for what she taught me an mow much i loved her.  I thought she was lucid in that moment and took in my gratitude and love.  She will always be in my heart.  I send my deepest sympathy and condolences to you, Al, and your children and grandchildren"

This tribute was added by Tana Pesso on 11th March 2016

"Diane Boyden Pesso, beloved wife of Albert Pesso and daughter of Martha L. Birchby and F. Wendell Boyden, died of ALZ on March 4, 2016 in Chestnut Hill, MA. Born August 8,1929 she leaves her husband, 3 daughters, Tana Pesso, Tasmin Pesso, and Tia Pesso Powell and 4 grandchildren, Chris F. Edley III, Kyra Chu Pesso, Jono Pesso Chu, and Xoren Pesso Powell.

With her powerful intellect, compassion, and fiercely independent and creative mind she along with her husband created Pesso Boyden System Psychomotor (an interactive process that creates new body-based memories to heal emotional deficits of the past) in the early 1960's.

Diane began her career in the field of dance. As a young woman, she studied under the legendary modern choreographer, Jose Limon, and was a favorite of the renowned Creative Movement pioneer and teacher, Barbara Metler. In high school she ran her own dance studio. Winning numerous scholarships, she continued her dance education at Bennington College under Martha Hill, founder of Julliard's dance department.

Diane went on to teach dance at Wheaton, Emerson, and BU's Sargent colleges. In the 1950's she and her husband established a dance school in Quincy  with 500 students which taught primarily modern dance, creative movement, and choreography to children and teenagers.

She was a PBSP therapist at McLean Hospital, the Director of Psychomotor Therapy at the New England Rehab Hospital (now Spaulding Rehabilitation) Pain Unit, had a private PBSP practice, and as Vice President of the Psychomotor Institute trained psychotherapists in PBSP certification programs in America and Europe.

In addition, as a dedicated utopian thinker Diane was years ahead of her time in her attempts in the late 1960's to create a multi age, race, creed, and income community that would have conserved land and have offered shared space for education, art, cooking, and other community activities.

A free spirit with a deeply compassionate wish to heal all the wounds of the world, Diane will be deeply missed by friends and family who remain inspired by her life's work and unique soul.

There will be a memorial service in late Spring."

This tribute was added by Jemme Stewart on 11th March 2016

"My Dear Al, My thoughts are with you so much at this time.  I remember Dianne so fondly and especially I remember how the love between the two of you was so clear and bright.  I hope that you know how much we love and care for you and we will hold you and your family in our hearts. With Love,  Jemme"

This tribute was added by Terry Berkson on 11th March 2016

"Dear Al,
   Our hearts go out to you and your family. We carry you with us always.
                                      Love,
                               Terry & Alice Berkson
                             & children Elizabeth & Jonathan"

This tribute was added by Matt Fried on 10th March 2016

"Diane always made me feel welcomed, supported and nurtured at Strolling Woods. She paid great attention to detail and made me always feel I had a place in her heart. As s teacher, I will always keep with me the amazing inventiveness of the exercises she led and the absolute joy and relief she exuded when ideal parents were truly ideal parenting. It was always evident that she and Al were a devoted couple. PBSP, and psychotherapy itself,  have been enriched by her presence and her contributions."

This tribute was added by Sheena Cameron on 9th March 2016

"Condolences to the family, especially Albert and Tana who I remember fondly. I was a neighbor of Diane's in the 50's in Wollaston ma. I was in what was probably her first dance class. When I didn't show up the 2nd year, she called my mother to find out why. When told we couldn't afford it, Diane said. "You send her right over. The money isn't important - only that she is getting something out of it." So I was able to continue my lessons with this very modern woman who helped shape my childhood."

This tribute was added by Christina Choi on 9th March 2016

"Diane, when I heard the news about you a few days ago I was in Jamaica. I saw a big star shining up in the dark sky, which reminded me of you. Although I have never met you in person I feel the presence of your life energy in Al's youthful smile when he talked about you, twinkling eyes with pride, and the deepest respect and admiration to you. I believe you are momentarily departed physically but your love to Al, your marvelous daughters, and to all the people you helped and inspired will be forever cherished in everyone's heart!
Dear Al, my husband and I are sending you and your family our hearts full of loving-kindness from Korea. (We just arrived home a few hours ago.)"

This tribute was added by Florian Kühne on 9th March 2016

"Dear Al,
I've never met Diane personally, but I remember well how fondly you spoke of her in our training in Munich and how important it is to you that PBSP is not only named after you, but her as well.
All the best to you and your family,
Florian"

This tribute was added by Agnes Friederici on 8th March 2016

"Dear Al and family,
we share your sorrow and grief for that unique woman, who developped with you together such a wonderful way to help people in all the world to become whole again. She dedicated her life and energy to make this world a better place.
Our thoughts are with you, while you -and all of us- have to say good-bye to Diane. Her bright spirit will live through the work with our clients and thus will last forever in our world.

The board of the PVDS/PVSD, Germany, in behalf of all the members"

This tribute was added by Ellen Elias-Bursac on 8th March 2016

"Many many years ago, probably 1969, Diane was driving Tana and me (Tana and I were teenagers) back to Boston from New York, where we'd been seeing friends and she'd been visiting Pesso relatives somewhere on Long Island (this is, at least, how I remember it). She was telling us about how when Al's father came to visit them he'd bring a suitcase full of food, particularly chickens. I'll never forget how we stopped at a Howard Johnson's and were laughing till we cried at the thought of the suitcase full of chickens."

This tribute was added by Renate Lüers on 8th March 2016

"Dear Al!
I would like to offer you my condolences. You brought Diana to every training you gave us, you had her at your side as wife and partner in work and introduced her to us that way. This for me was impressing and important and will never be lost from my mind.
With love from Renate"

This tribute was added by Gerrit de Bruine on 8th March 2016

"My deepest condoleance to you Al, and your family.
I remember our wonderfull experiënces in Eelde in the early eithies in our traininggroup. You as a couple, dancers, focus on the body and the movement, so missing in our verbal therapies. Also as father and mother of your wonderfull 4th child: PBSP. I loved the exercises of Diana, and later on, I more and more appreciated the sometimes underestimated relevance off it. I keep here with me in my heart!"

This tribute was added by Marietta van Attekum on 8th March 2016

"Dear Al, Tana, Tasmin and Tia,
Your mother was a light for us all, in her great contributions to PBSP. We have an expression in Dutch - I do not now if it exists in English - that is: "he carried her on his hands", meaning: he held her in great esteem, usually said of husbands about their wife. That is how I remember Al talking about Diane: carrying her on his hands - probably also literally, when you were younger. Well, Al, we all carry you both on our hands. And let us hope that Diana's heartfelt celebration of diversity will have a lasting impact on our woeful times. Please accept my deep condolences. Marietta van Attekum."

This tribute was added by Mona Pillmann on 8th March 2016

"Dear Al,
I`d like to give you my hand and a warm hugh.
I give you my compassion. I`m sad.
What at a luck, that Diane had been born.
Mona from Freiburg""

This tribute was added by Michael Bachg on 7th March 2016

"Minute’s silence for Diane Boyden Pesso
When Diane quietly stopped breathing, we lost one of the two founders of PBSP. With her energy, her vivid, creative and independent mind and awareness of body movement and body expression, she presented us with many contributions to PBSP, f.e. the ideal parent exercise, which is right in the core of PBSP.
With her artistic creative mind, she was more fascinated about people’s potentialities to grow than in medical concepts of illness and healing. Her vision about PBSP was broader than psychotherapeutic. She was the mother of the method and stayed firmly with the fundamentals of PBSP as a contribution for the development of humanity in individuals and society. She also saw children and parents, schools and other family institutions as recipients of PBSP.
Let us honour her in a minute’s silence around the planet, in all countries and on all continents, which PBSP had reached in deep sympathy with Al, the daughters Tana, Tasmin and Tia, their partners and the grandchildren.
Michael Bachg"

This tribute was added by Beatrice Etter-Schmolck on 7th March 2016

"I have been deeply hurt by the death of Diane and I would like to offer my condolences to Al and the family. - Regrettably I did not have the possibility to meet Diane in person. But when Al gave us lectures, he praised Diane’s substantial contribution on the development of PBSP. I highly respect the big treasure both of them brought into the world. Thanks to Diane and Al and PBSP there are more rays of sunshine in my life. – I am very touched by the photos of both: They are dancing with one foot on the earth and with one foot in heaven. For me it is a metaphor of their work. - My thoughts are with you. ♥"

This tribute was added by Anja Alexandra Schurer on 7th March 2016

"My very dear greetings and compassion I send to Al and all the family. And I light my candle also to wish Diane a blissful further journey. Although I never met Diane physically, her presence was always here when Al (or PBSP) was around. She was a part of all the workshops and her energy could be felt in the techniques, the atmosphere and beeing deeply connected with Al. The energy of love was so strong to be felt between the two of them, Al and Diane, that it was and is a most beautiful phenomena. No boundaries could become too strong, not the ones between Europe and America, not between sickness and health, not between time and space.There were always most powerful lovely bridges, might it have been the intense videoconferences, caring thoughts or the pure heartconnection. There will be now lovely bridges between life and death, I am convinced. I pray for this very special love may be further protected so that it will keep on shining for all of us, now specially for Al and his family. With love, Anja"

This tribute was added by Ulrike Thiel on 7th March 2016

"Dear Al, as a fomer student from the Netherlands I received the news about the death of your beloved wife with compassion. I want to take the chance here to send my condolences to you. Good to hear, that Diane went went without pain and in peace. My thoughts are with you and your family remembering DIane, as I had the chance to see her during the conresses in The Netherlands. With kind regards yours Ulrike Boon-Thiel The Netherlands"

This tribute was added by Christina Stalder on 7th March 2016

"Dear Al
I am deeply sad about the News of Diane having passed away. I never met her but in a sense she was always there through you and your loving bond and through the beautiful, graceful pictures of you two dancing which gave me a little glimpse of who she was. I am very grateful for what you two have brought into life. This is a deep conviction of mine that nothing, not even death can separate the love between you nor the love, insight and wisdom you put into PBSP! Much love, Christina"

This tribute was added by Juliet Grayson on 7th March 2016

"Diane, I never met you, which is a sadness, as I have such a profound love and respect for the method that you and Al co-created.  However, I feel like I know you a little bit, because Al mentioned you so often, when he was teaching the method in the U.K.  You have made a great contribution to the world.  Thank you."

This tribute was added by Arthur De Vos on 7th March 2016

"So sad to hear about Diane's passing away.
I met her for the first and only time in 1994 in Atlanta. But I met her a hundred times when Al was lecturing or when I was going through PBSP readings. Diane was always there because her contribution to psychotherapy, psychology and human sciences is of the greatest value and for ever lasting. Thanks to Al her intuitive discoveries were not lost. He integrated her and his findings in a very important psychotherapeutic framework. As so many say here, I too was touched and enriched by the warm and respectful relationship between Al and Diane. I am very grateful I got to know them.
With kind memories and forever in my mind, Diane will never fade away.
My sincerest and warm condolences to you Al and your family."

This tribute was added by Jo Goemans on 6th March 2016

"My condoleance to the family of Diane and specially to you, Al.  I only met Diane once on a PBSP symposion in the Netherlands. She was such a friendly lady and so close with Al.  It must be heavy to let go this life. Hope you can believe that there is more...it gives some strength to go on.  Diane will stay in all the memories she gave to you and i know they'll be strong enough to stay on forever.
A warm hug and big support.
I light a candle....
Jo Goemans, Pesso-therapist, Belgium-Europe"

This tribute was added by betty Scharer on 6th March 2016

"Dear AL
I was so saddened by the news of Dianne s  death.  She left such a tremendous legacy though the work you created.  I am so fortunate to have learned from each of you.  I have fond memories of Diane teaching the exercises to the Asheville group and her contribution to the special time in Strolling Woods.  My deepest love and sympathy to you and your children."

This tribute was added by Wouter Wouters on 6th March 2016

"Dear Al,

We hereby offer you our sincere condolences on the death of Diane. We understood that she passed away without fear and pain; that is important and comforting. Saying goodbye to someone who has been at your side for more than half a century must be an enormous task for you. We wish you much comfort, dear love and warm support from family and friends surrounding you.

In our minds we are with you, with affection,

The board of the PBSP society in the Netherlands,

Maria Arens, Lot Julien, Fijke van Vliet, Wouter Wouters"

This tribute was added by Baerbel + Guenter Weier on 6th March 2016

"We saw Diane once in Strolling Woods giving you a kiss at the beginning of the workshop. So we could know the love and the connectedness between you two. We presume that was one of the basic elements for creating this wonderful ideas which formed PBSP.
In our thoughts we are with you. We hope that your loved-ones can support you in this hard and sad times.
Baerbel and Guenter from Berlin"

This tribute was added by Tana Pesso on 6th March 2016

"My mother speaks at length here with incisive intelligence about PBSP's origins and tenets in the video “Frozen Emotions/ Gestolde Emoties,”a half hour documentary on PBSP by the Dutch television series, “Northern Light.” (1999). You can find it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q9bPozHEnJ0

Also featured are my father, Dr. Menno Witter, Professor of Neuroanatomy at Vrije University and Lowijs Perquin M.D., a certified PBSP Supervisor/Trainer and a psychiatrist on the faculty of the Psychiatry Department of Vrije University in Amsterdam."

This tribute was added by Elizabeth Seabrook on 6th March 2016

"Al, I am saddened to hear of your loss as well as that of the PBSP community and, indeed, the world.  I am aware of your deep, loving relationship with Diane.  My knowing of Diane was when she was in the background supporting your training at Strolling Woods.  I have seen the lovely photos of you and Diane as young dancers and was touched by the love evidenced in your eyes and dance positions.  I have much gratitude and respect for Diane as an integral part of PBSP and as your soulmate.  The heavens are dancing with Diane and you, Al, are being loved and supported by many."

This tribute was added by monique cuppen on 6th March 2016

"Dear Al, I only met Diana once, some years ago, in Amsterdam. I remember how girlish she looked, with her pony-tail and open look. I was impressed to realize that she was the woman who made such wonderful contributions to the PBSP-work.
Al, I'm saddened for you, that you will have to miss your soulmate.
I hope you will feel supported by your loved ones and by all the people who appreciate the work of you and Diana."

This tribute was added by Helen Gilbert on 5th March 2016

"Such sadness, learning of Diane's death.  I'm flooded with memories and a deepened realization of how important she was to me.  When she came to do workshops at our Pesso group in the Twin Cities, I found her to be a role model which I needed of a strong, impassioned, opinionated, and just woman.  She taught us so much that influenced my therapy practice ever since: the metaphor of shape/countershape; awareness of self-self interactions; naming, expressing, and valuing deep emotions; and always, always the primacy of the patient's needs in their healing.  I came to Strolling Woods a few times, and I was always aware of Diane's being the one providing the holding environment.  
     I remember seeing Diane and Al dance at the Amsterdam conference; she could exude joy from deep inside.  We've all lost a rich and creative soul, whose spirit lives on in her wide influence."

This tribute was added by Petra Winnette on 5th March 2016

"Dear alI. I just remembered one night of 4th of July at John Gale house in NH few years ago. Diane and Al were dancing. It was so beautiful! Diane was a real artist: intuitive, emotional, graceful and such a free soul. That is something very unique. She contributed with her special qualities to the creation of PBSP. What a life! Petra Winnette, Prague"

This tribute was added by Tana Pesso on 5th March 2016

"FROM MARG WHEDON

Where do I begin, having met and getting to know Diane and Al Pesso when I began working for them at their retreat center on Webster Lake in New Hampshire back in 1979 ???  Diane allowed me to bring my children with me as I did housekeeping, took care of guests needs, and eventually became a "jill of all trades", sometimes helping put together newsletters, and doing mailings and filing for the ever growing PBSP. I realize now that Diane made room for me to bring my 6 year old and my 1 year old and her playpen, because she honored my belief in being my own children’s caregiver / mother, while I found a way to contribute to the workforce and budget of my own home.

I went back to work for (and with) Diane several times over the years and I was there in 2009 to help Diane with downsizing and packing decisions and to assist with their move to Boston. I stayed on in New Hampshire to continue to operate a NH Business Office / communications presence for PBSP, Diane's and Al's life work.

As Diane's Alzheimer's progressed and Al's lecture and teaching tours in Europe grew in length, I actually moved into their Boston home to assist Diane for 4 or 5 days per week for the ten week duration of Al's travel schedule. This brings me to my fondest and most fun memory with Diane. During one of my stays with Diane, downtown Boston experienced one of the worst power failures in history when a major transformer fire occurred just 2 or 3 blocks from the Pessos' home. It was chilly wintertime and life on the 17th floor with no power, when we realized how long the outage might last, was a little scary. However, the living room windows faced south to receive some warmth from the sun and heat rises, so the 17th floor took a few days to begin to get cold. We talked about bundling up and getting in my car and traveling to daughter Tana's or north to NH but decided to be brave! The Star Market across the street was running generator(s) to keep one cash register open and a store full of things that didn't need refrigeration were available for purchase. Diane and I decided to turn worry into FUN. We "camped out". We were survivors! We actually had a BLAST, reminiscing about "old times" and Diane telling me how she met Al and all about their dance years and her daughters when they were little. We turned those 4 days into an adventure and ate like campers and laughed and went to bed when it got dark. It is, and will remain, one of my fondest memories   .   .   .    Godspeed on this new adventure, Diane.  

Love, Marg"

This tribute was added by Marina Eddy on 5th March 2016

""It was a privilege to work with Al and Diane at Strolling Woods. I am so grateful for Al and Diane's work which has so influenced and informed my life.  Condolences to the entire family and I wish them strength and love, grace and healing light at this time.""

This tribute was added by Susan Smoller on 5th March 2016

"My thoughts and prayers are with you,  Working with and living with your family are some of my cherished memories of Boston.  I always felt very supported by Diane and hoped some of her grace and openness would rub off on me.  Learned so much from all of you.  I am sorry for your loss."

This tribute was added by Lucy Wardimon on 5th March 2016

"Since 1996 I am in touch with PBSP. Workshops and training. Three times I met Diane: once in Basel, once in Holland and once in the States. Unfortunately, never working with her. During all these years Diane's presence and impact was there. Each time when working with Al, through his eords when mentining Diane's contribution to PBSP , by the tone of Al's voice speaking of her and by the expression, his appreciation and love were deeply felt. We knew that on each day away from home Al was speaking eith Diane.
So, although my acquaitance with Diane is quite limited, I feel the sorrow of knowing that she is not there anymore. Feeling the urge to hug her farewell and hug Al in this moment of such a loss. Only when loosing someone we know really the meaning of the person for us. I know that Diane is inside my heart."

This tribute was added by Ronald M Converse on 5th March 2016

"I am so glad her passing was with peace, just like I remember her in life;  what a wonderful beautiful person and her gift to humanity with her creative work along with Al in the evolution and development of tbsp
May she rest in peace and dance in the heavens."

This tribute was added by Rubens Kignel on 5th March 2016

"Dear Al,

Only good memories from Diane, warm hugs and keep well, Rubens"

This tribute was added by Jon Chapman on 5th March 2016

"At the PBSP Conference in Holland in 2009, when I first encountered Diane, I remember being profoundly struck by the huge appreciation and respect for Diane that pervaded the PBSP community, notwithstanding the fact that she had not been greatly active as a therapist or teacher for some time. Her contribution to the development of PBSP was enormous, and her support for Al's later work as a teacher and therapist during their time at Strolling Woods irreplaceable.

On the final evening, at the end-of-conference party, she and Al danced to the band, and we were all able to witness the grace and balance that would have marked her in her prime as a dancer.

As a member of that community I remain deeply greatful for Diane's life."

This tribute was added by Nada Soukupova on 5th March 2016

"Dear Al, I am with you in my thoughts and prayers, with a deep gratitude for everything Diana brought to this world... with much Love Nada"

This tribute was added by Barbara Fischer-Bartelmann on 5th March 2016

"When teaching PBSP here in Europe, Al always emphasized your essential contributions in creating this wonderful method. You have brought so much healing and growth to so many people all around the world. I bow to you in respect and gratitude.
"To know that even one life has breathed easier
because you have lived, this is to have succeeded!""

This tribute was added by Kat Hitchmoth on 5th March 2016

"Thinking of the second family I had as a teen tonight. Diane you gave me my first job when I was 14, I worked for you and Al for the next 3 years and then a number of times throughout the years thereafter. You hired me as a cook for yours and Al's summer workshops at Strolling Woods and you knew I could do it even when I didn't know it in myself. It turned out to be what I still say to this day, were probably several of the best summers of my life. I learned a lot about myself and it was a pivotal point for me in my trust of people. I will remember you fondly. May you rest in peace and the dancer in your soul be free to sway the heavens."

This tribute was added by Deb Antari on 5th March 2016

"Dear Al and Family, I am so sorry to hear of Diane's passing. I recall the light of her being as she served as such a lovely and gracious hostess from my summers at Strolling Woods. Peace and blessings to you and sweet and easy passage to Diane. -Deb Antari"

This tribute was added by Marie Fortin on 4th March 2016

"My thoughts and prayers go out to you Al and your family at this time.
I have such great respect and memories of you and Diane while attending many of the experiential workshops in N.H.
What a great gift she left us with, in PBSP.
Thank you Diane."

This tribute was added by Gus Kaufman on 4th March 2016

"I have so  many wonderful memories of Diane! Her grace, suppleness, kindness and ever-present concern for others, for justice and fairness. Her creativity and belief in people and determination, as Tana captured so well, to help them find themselves. She was a dancer for freedom, a choreographer for inclusion, a tireless worker for all. She shed a great light in this world that will continue long after her passing."

This tribute was added by Ruthann Fox-Hines on 4th March 2016

"I remember the wonderful photographs of you (Al) and Diane as dancers.  In my belief system Diane is dancing free now and very aware watching over you.  Love and hugs,"

This tribute was added by Kathie Power on 4th March 2016

"Oh my! I remember Diane as a wonderful host for our Strolling Woods workshops as well as providing our Minnesota Psychomotor Training group with several workshops emphasizing her PBSP exercises that got us very involved and expressive in our movement on early Saturday mornings in the 1990s.  As she moves into stardust, I look forward to dancing with her when my time comes. Dance on.....Diane...by the light of the moon spread your wings of consciousness..acceptance, peace, inclusivity, compassion,,."

This tribute was added by Raoul Papavoine on 4th March 2016

"My condoleance to Al and the family. I wish you all the best.
I met Diane and Al 15 years ago. during the workshop I stayed in there vacation house. It was a good memory!
Beste wishes,
Raoul Papavoine (clown, dancer, tai chi fool) , Amsterdam, The Netherlands"

This tribute was added by Ginny Wright on 4th March 2016

"I will always remember the grace with which Diane moved and the graciousness with which she welcomed all us rambunctious PBSP students to Strolling Woods in the summer, and the so obvious love she and Al shared for so many years. With much love to all the Pesso's,
Ginny Wright"

This tribute was added by Tana Pesso on 4th March 2016

"Among the greatest gifts our mother gave us was the belief in the importance of being true to ourselves, creative, and individual paired with the courage and fearlessness in pursuing that path. She reinforced this idea even at birth with the choice of our names. She wanted us to have completely unique names so that we could be free to be our unique selves without the subtle and restricting influence of the examples of lives of other people holding the same name. As children she encouraged our creative expression and instilled a horror of coloring books or paint by numbers kits which would restrict our own ideas. As a dance teacher she was unique in teaching improvisational dance and also elements of choreography to young children.

Somehow, our mother made us feel so comfortable with being different and free thinkers that despite living in a primarily working class town, and being children of dance teachers who taught modern dance in a time and area favoring tap and acrobatics, we never felt out of place or strange. That was quite an accomplishment given how different we were from our neighbors. Perhaps this was because she also instilled in us not just a tolerance of diversity, but a celebration of it. She would find opportunities to bring people of different ethnicities into our lives and take us to local festivals celebrating world cultures.

Another gift she gave us was the courage to carve our own path and stick to it regardless of what others might think.  She was fearless in pursuing her beliefs and so was a model for this. And lastly, she celebrated the creativity and accomplishments of her children and grandchildren all through her life.  At the age of 83 and needing a walker and the help of a caregiver, she went to a late show at a nightclub in Boston to cheer on her grandson who was performing as a singer songwriter. He will always treasure the memory of his grandmother kicking up her heels and dancing in the aisles as she reveled in his music and performance to demonstrate her support for his creativity and path in life."


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Tana Pesso

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