Mabel Pitts Wilson, a member of the family of Canadian fishermen who immigrated to Montauk in the 1920s, died on Jan. 9 at Cedar Lodge Nursing Home in Center Moriches. She was 98.
She was born on Jan. 12, 1913, in D’Escousse, Nova Scotia, a daughter of Albini Petitpas (who changed his name to Benjamin Pitts) and the former Mary McDonald. She is survived by her daughter Nancy King of Sag Harbor, as well as four grandchildren, eight great- grandchildren, and one great-great-grandchild. Mrs. Wilson was predeceased by eight siblings.
Mrs. King said she remembered growing up on Fort Pond Bay in Montauk, where her grandfather continued to fish. She said she remembered her mother preparing a “sampy” dish that went along with goose during hunting season. “She didn’t have recipes, it was a pinch of this and a pinch of that.”
Mrs. Wilson worked for a laundry in East Hampton before marrying Harry Wilson, a butcher. She helped him run a grocery store on Route 114 in Sag Harbor, where their daughter Nancy was born. They moved to Madison Street, where they owned another grocery store. Mr. Wilson also served as a Sag Harbor Village policeman at the time. After they moved to Rogers Street Mr. Wilson ran the highway department for the village, and Mrs. Wilson took in laundry and cleaned house while raising the couple’s two daughters. Mrs. Wilson’s sister Mary Ellen predeceased her.
Ms. King said her mother was a warm and caring person who made sure that she and her sister saw the sights of New York City. She made them Halloween costumes and remained active in their lives after they were married and had their own children. She was also the “one person in the family who took care of family members who were dying.” She served as a volunteer at the Southampton Nursing Home for many years.
Mrs. Wilson’s ashes were interred at Most Holy Trinity Cemetery in East Hampton.