Veronica Diane De Mattei, 80, wife of the late James Virgil De Mattei, Sr., died Monday, November 13, 2023, at the home of Melanie of John De Mattei in Irmo, SC.
Born in Thomasville, GA, she was the daughter of the late Haywood and Ella Brock Gainey.
Diane was a joyous woman who grew up on a small farm in beautifully rural southern Georgia surrounded by a large loving family. Even though Diane traded country life for the metropolis of Atlanta when she graduated high school, she never lost her love for planting and caring for living beings. Diane wanted her life and others’ lives to be filled with beauty. Diane always wanted to lighten the hearts of those around her expressing her love by preparing a meal, arranging a centerpiece with flowers from her garden, or doodling on a notepad or coloring book.
Diane worked for many years as an administrative assistant and later as a sales associate, and finally for herself as a caterer. Her last and most difficult job was that of caregiver for her husband, Jim, after he suffered a stroke in 2001. The final labor of love lasted until Jim’s death in 2006.
Diane is survived by a large and loving family. Her immediate family includes children and their families: Virginia Raffa, and her husband, Jeff; Jim De Mattei, and his wife, Nancy, and their daughter, Ariana; Theresa Sidote, and her husband, John; and John De Mattei, and his wife, Melanie. Diane’s living siblings and their families include: Lorraine Pless and her children, Lisa, Bobby, Lydia, and their families; Marvyne May, and her children, Michelle, Scott, and Deanna and their families; Ray Josey, Sr., and his daughter, Candice and her family; and his granddaughter, Ashley and her family; Angela Chason and her daughters, Kristie and her family; and Erica; and Terrie Priest, her sons, Danny and his family, and Christopher.
In addition to her husband and parents, she was preceded in death by siblings, John Gainey, Nannette Gainey, William Gainey, Durant Gainey and his granddaughter, Kimberly; Lamar Pless, Danny Priest, Peter Chason, Linda Josey, and her son, Ray Jr.
A graveside memorial service will be held at a later date at the family’s cemetery in Cairo, Georgia.
The family requests that individuals plant a flower in memory of Diane, or offer a donation to Alzheimer’s Association at Diane’s tribute page located at http://act.alz.org/goto/DeMattei
Friends are encouraged to share their favorite memories of Veronica with the family by clicking on the button labeled “Leave A Message, Share A Memory” below.