Amy Blacharski (née Sampogna) died peacefully at home on December 7, 2021 surrounded by family and friends. She was born on September 27, 1969 in Peekskill NY. She grew up in Dutchess County attending Glenham Elementary School, Beacon Middle School and John Jay High School. Her life’s journey took her to Florida as a young adult where she lived until 10 years ago when she returned to NY to be closer to family. Since returning, she worked predominantly in the automotive repair industry.
Amy is survived by her mother Ruthe Santek (née Orneck), her sister Lisa Costantino (née Sampogna), her brother-in-law Al Costantino, and her nephew Angelo Costantino. Her father Michael Sampogna passed away earlier this year. Also surviving Amy are “the family of her heart”: Kelly Bialko; Ezarra Lanflisi; and the Grabowski family - Mike, Sheila, and Brooke. Alexis Grabowski, who predeceased Amy, is now reunited with her Aunt “B”.
Amy was a very loving, giving and accepting person. She cared deeply about the people in her life, investing much of herself in those relationships. She was intensely curious about people and their experiences. To her loved ones, she was an advocate who provided great support in times of need.
She had strong passions, including her love of animals. Amy was deeply connected to the many pets she had in her life, most recently her three cats - George, Tuna and Thurston, whom she is now with again. Her living fur-family includes: the dogs - Higgins, Murphy, Ozzie, and Harriet; Louie the cat; and Chippy the chipmunk.
Nature and natural spaces gave her tremendous pleasure: sunrises and sunsets, autumn leaves, birds singing in the backyard, plants and flowers, and trees – especially springtime’s cherry blossoms. This love of nature inspired her creativity and skill as an amateur photographer. In the broader sense, many of the creative and performance arts were a passion of hers. From an early age she painted, as a teen she started writing, and as an adult took ballet lessons.
Her love of writing and curiosity lead her to study journalism in college where she had several articles published in local newspapers. She was deeply interested in her Scandinavian background, practicing Swedish with her mom. Music was extremely important to her, with her playlists including artists like: Radio Head, Tool, Pearl Jam, Cake, Pink Floyd, Neil Young, B52s. This appreciation of music lead her in recent years to teach herself to play guitar. Style and design - be it found in fashion, architecture, or automobiles - were hobbies of hers. With pride and love, she drove her car, a 1999 fire orange BMW 323i. Amy’s curiosity was not limited to only the pleasant or bucolic side of nature. She was fascinated by human behavior in general and was an armchair expert on U.S. serial-killers.
Given the variety of her knowledge and her curiosity of others, you could not help but be drawn into having a conversation with her and getting to know her better.
Her friends and family are in shock over her very short bout with cancer. The belief that quality of life was a priority underpinned Amy’s decision to spend her remaining days at home surrounded by those she loved. Much gratitude is given by her family to the wonderful people at White Plains Hospital and Calvary Hospital Hospice. Both institutions have amazingly dedicated professionals who made Amy’s last weeks comfortable and who provided invaluable support to the family.
The family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations be made in Amy’s name to Pets Alive, an animal sanctuary in Middletown NY, or to the animal rescue organization of choice. Amy leaves behind love, laughter, curiosity, and a spirit of giving that will continue to leave the world a better place.