May 30, 1924 - February 21, 2022
Dina DiCiucci was born on May 30, 1924 in Oakland, California, the youngest child of Guilio DiCiucci and Attilia DeCesare DiCiucci. Dina and her siblings were first-generation Americans and grew up in an Italian-American home, as their parents had both immigrated from Italy before they were married. During World War 2, Dina worked in a factory that made k-rations (today known as MREs) for the troops. Dina met her husband, Dwight when he and his mother rented a cottage owned by Dina's parents. Dina and Dwight Axtell were married on January 19, 1944 All three of Dina & Dwight's children, Carole, Paul, and Don were born in California. The family moved to The Dalles, Oregon, in 1950 where Dwight worked as an electrician on the construction of The Dalles Dam. Every summer after the family moved to Oregon, Dina would drive the three kids down to California to visit grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins. One of those cousins shared that he always remembered Dina's smile and laughter when they would visit, as well as the Chinese restaurant the whole clan visited only once a year – when the Oregon cousins visited. In The Dalles, Dina worked as a cashier at Sawyers Variety Store. A special memory is the little bags of candy that Dina would often bring home from work to the children. Her kids also have memories of Dina getting all dressed up in the evenings after work to go out to her ladies' social and community service groups. In 1963 the family moved to Eugene, where Dina and Dwight owned and operated a dry cleaner/laundromat for several years. Dina also worked at Hirons Drug Store for a number of years, and after the children were grown, she worked as a school cook, retiring from Oaklea Middle School in Junction City. Over the years, grandchildren were added to the family – Chris, Corey, and Emily, as well as two great-grandsons, Aleczander and Oliver. Emily was blessed to live down the street from Noni (Italian for "grandma") for her entire life. They spent lots of time together making special memories. In 2003 when Don, Linda, and Emily moved to Salem for Don's job, Dina moved with them, and settled in a house just a few blocks away. When Don and Linda began attending Salem First Baptist shortly after moving to Salem, Dina also joined and became involved with Linda in women's Bible studies for several years. True to her Italian heritage, one of Dina’s favorite singers was Andrea Bocelli, and in more recent years she enjoyed listening to Josh Groban’s music. Dina loved to read, and enjoyed a variety of different genres, including historical novels, Christian fiction, and mysteries. She was a regular visitor to the public library. She was a good cook, and always invited family and friends to stay for dinner. She had a sweet tooth – besides Italian panettone cake and biscotti cookies, she loved chocolate chip mint ice cream. One of Dina's favorite pastimes was her car. She always took good care of her car, she loved driving, and she never let her gas tank get below half full. In recent years as dementia gradually set in, Dina became more confused and less able to care for herself. Caregivers were hired to give her part-time help in her home, including Katrina, who was a wonderful caregiver and a blessing to Dina and to the family. Then it became necessary for Dina to move, first to assisted living and then to an adult foster home. She had been in the assisted living home for two weeks when the Covid lockdown hit. As with many other seniors, the isolation forced by the lockdown was hard on Dina in many ways. In spite of Dina's sometimes cloudy memory in the last year, even if she didn't always know the family’s names, when they visited she knew they were family and that they loved her. She was always happy to see them, and when they promised they’d be back to visit soon, she'd always say, "Be sure you do." Dina passed away on February 21, 2022 at the age of 97. We rejoice that she is with Jesus and her body is no longer in pain. Dina Axtell is survived by her daughter Carole Reese, sons Paul (Cheyla) Axtell and Don (Linda) Axtell, grandsons Chris (Josie) and Corey Reese, granddaughter Emily Axtell, and great-grandsons Aleczander and Oliver Reese. Dina was preceded in death by her parents, husband Dwight, sister Eve Kosich, brother Bruno DiCiucci, and son-in-law Chuck Reese.
Dina DiCiucci was born on May 30, 1924 in Oakland, California, the youngest child of Guilio DiCiucci and Attilia DeCesare DiCiucci. Dina and her siblings were first-generation Americans and grew up in an Italian-American home, as their parents... View Obituary & Service Information
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