Tara Lynn Papura

Tara Papura and her children

Tara Lynn Papura, 35, of Amsterdam, NY, has passed away after a valiant battle with cancer on Thursday March 16th, 2017 at home embraced and surrounded by the love of her family.

Tara was born on June 20th, 1981. She was the daughter of John and Terri Wood. She graduated from Oppenheim-Ephratah Central School Class of 2000. Prior to her illness, she was employed by the Greater Amsterdam School District as a teacher’s aide. It was in that position where she discovered her passion in early childhood education and found her greatest joy in the love of the children she cared for. Tara’s biggest gift and talent lay in her ability to love without question or hesitation. She touched the lives of everyone she encountered with unconditional love, care, and understanding. Her smile and sense of humor lit up a room.

Tara’s greatest accomplishment was her children and her husband. A completely devoted and loyal mother, Tara gave her all for her family. She took great pride in making snacks and gifts for classmates, involving them as best as she could, and assuring their confidence in their future success. There was nothing she would not do for her “Babies”. One of the things that made Tara the happiest was her involvement with Highlights Dance Studio. A wonderful group who became more like a family to her. Her love and commitment to each child and adult was beyond words. Being able to assist during competitions and helping with recitals gave Tara a deep sense of pride and happiness. Tara leaves behind a void that will never be filled, and a legacy that makes her family and close friends proud.

Tara is survived by her loving husband Robert; her cherished children, RyLeigh, Ethan, Nataleigh, and step-son Nick; her father John (Donna) Wood; her mother Terri (Rockwell) Wood; her beloved sister Leigh Ann; her step-sister Kelly Tennant; her step-brother Christopher Tennant; her mother in-law Jane Papura; her sister in-law Kelly (Doug) Daighle; her two brother in-laws Bill (Tara) Papura and Eric Papura; her much loved nephews, Alex, Daniel, and Andrew; and her niece Tori; as well as several aunts, uncles, and cousins whom she loved dearly. Tara is also survived by her beloved special friends Kim Bartlett and the Highlight Dance Studio family, Deb Oertel, Cassandra Landry, and Jess Paliling. All of whom have been such a vital part of her fight. She also leaves behind many wonderful friends too numerous to mention. Tara has now been reunited with her beloved “nana and pop Gladys and Channing Rockwell; her grandmother and step grandfather, Blanche and Wilfred Morin; and her grandfather and step-grandmother Owen and Ruth Wood.

A Memorial Service for Tara will be held on Thursday, March 23, 2017 at 7 p.m. at Betz, Rossi, & Bellinger Family Funeral Home, 171 Guy Park Avenue, Amsterdam, NY. Family and friends are invited to attend a visitation from 4 to 7 p.m. prior to the service at the funeral home. In lieu of flowers a memorial contribution may be made to her children’s education trust being established in Tara’s memory. Donations may be mailed to 5727 Route 29, St. Johnsville, NY 13452 c/o Terri Wood. Those wishing to express their condolences to the family may do so by signing our online memorial at www.brbsfuneral.com.

By Patricia Older

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