Long time Fallon resident Diane Gauthier-Novak passed away Nov. 18, 2023, in Carson City, Nevada, with her beloved family at her side.
Born to Louis and Madeleine Gauthier in North Adams, Massachusetts, on July 8, 1941, Diane was the oldest of four children. Her family moved to Bennington, Vermont, in 1944, where she lived until she traveled west in the early 1970s. She landed in Reno, Nevada, where she met and started a family with Robert (Bob) Novak and his son, Robb. The family moved around a bit and added five more children by the time they made Fallon their home in the early 1980s.
While she never saw herself becoming a mother, she quickly realized it was the most important job of her life. She was actively involved in as many of her children's school and extracurricular activities as possible. She particularly valued the education and adventures that both the Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts offered, and she led several groups of each as her children grew, including leading Fallon's first Daisy Girl Scout troop. Few things made her as happy as taking all her kids camping or bringing them on epic cross-country road trips, but becoming a grandmother ended up being the thing she loved most of all.
She worked for many years in the heart of the Fallon community, first, in classified advertising at the Lahontan Valley News, and later at the Churchill County Museum. Despite being very well-read and highly educated, Diane never did understand the word "retirement," and at the time of her passing, she was still actively volunteering for the Seniors in Service Foster Grandparent program hosted by the Lyon County School District.
Diane was preceded in death by her parents, her sister,
Anita Gauthier, husband Robert Novak, and son-in-law Matthew Bryden.
Diane is survived by her children and grandchildren: son Robb (Kim) Novak and their daughter Rio; daughter Rachel (Douglas) Leach and their children Robby and Katie Leach; son Richard Novak and his children Aris, Artemis and& Atlas Novak; daughter Rebecca (Medicine Eagle) Novak and her son Paitten Shu-pa-thu Medicine Eagle Novak; daughter Robin (Rick Clarke) and their daughter Indica Simpson; and daughter Roberta (Eric) Amador and their daughter Isabella Amador. She is also survived by sister Christine Gauthier, brother Ray Gauthier, and numerous cousins, nieces,
Diane lived a life of integrity, service, kindness, and love. She avoided the spotlight at all costs, but she would not hesitate to give her last dollar to someone in need. Although she did not want a funeral of any kind, the family will be honoring her remarkable life and legacy by hosting a service-based celebration of life next summer. Please stay tuned for
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the Churchill County Library and/or the Churchill County Museum, two of her favorite places; the Fallon Theatre (aka the family home for over ten years); or any program to help those in need.
All arrangements are under the direction of Smith Family Funeral Home in Fallon.