Cynthia Sylvia Thurston, 85
Cynthia Sylvia Thurston, 85, of Arlington, Virginia, and formerly Nantucket, passed away peacefully in her daughter’s home surrounded by her family on Tuesday, August 15, 2017. She is survived by her daughter Lisa Thurston Donovan and son-in-law Daniel Donovan, son Sidney Thurston III and daughter-in-law Hiromi Thurston, as well as five grandchildren; Brittany Elizabeth Brandenburg and her husband Justin, Christina Pinkham Hall and her husband Chris, Megumi Sylvia Thurston, Noah Thurston, and Luke Thurston, as well as one great-grandson, Weston James Brandenburg.
A memorial mass will be held at 1:00 p.m. Friday, August 25, at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church, 830 23rd Street South Arlington, Virginia, 22202. A reception will follow at Café Italia, 519 23rd Street South Arlington, from 2-4pm, a favorite restaurant of Cynthia and her husband, Sid, over the years. There will be a funeral mass in early September in her final resting location of Nantucket, Massachusetts.
The daughter of Frank Farrell Sylvia, original owner of Sylvia Antiques, and Elizabeth Pinkham Sylvia, Cindy spoke fondly of her wonderful childhood playing with her siblings, attending antique auctions, riding horses on Nantucket, enjoying lobster dinners her mother prepared, and cheering on her father’s race horses. She is predeceased by the love of her life Sidney Thurston Jr; her siblings Patricia Sylvia Hare, Richard Sabin Sylvia, and Frank Farrell Sylvia Jr. She completed high school in 1950 at Belmont High School in Belmont, Massachusetts, where she was Captain of her high school basketball team, and then completed her education at Radcliffe College in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
In 1956, Cynthia married the love of her life, Sidney Walter Thurston Jr., also of Nantucket, at St. Mary Our Lady of the Isle Catholic Church on Nantucket, surrounded by a large gathering of family and friends and a beautiful reception at The Wauwinet. Cynthia and Sid were proudly blessed with their son Sidney Walter Thurston III and daughter Lisa Pinkham Thurston. In 1966, Sidney accepted a job with the federal government and the family moved to Arlington, Virginia. During this time, Cindy supported the family as a loving homemaker and teacher at Busy Bee Daycare in Arlington.
In her retirement, Cynthia found great pride in assisting in caring for her five grandchildren, attending sporting events, school plays, birthday parties, and joining vacations to Disney World, Hawaii, Florida, and Nantucket each summer to reunite with her childhood friends and family over the years. She was a parishioner of Our Lady of Lourdes in Arlington, Virginia, for over 50 years, and was a devout Catholic, sharing her love of her faith with her children and grandchildren, and all those around her. Cynthia was a welcoming heart and very caring neighbor in her neighborhood, Arlington Heights, always providing support to her community and neighbors. Her family living room became a gathering place of love with visitors, neighbors, children, and grandchildren coming through “Grand Central Station,” as she referred to it. All were welcome at her home, aside from when she was watching her beloved Washington Redskins football games that could not be interrupted.
Cynthia was a true matriarch and her greatest joy was sharing stories of her husband, grandparents, parents, and siblings to her children and grandchildren. Her ability to easily share family memories and depict images of Nantucket from the past will continue to shape the family for future generations to come.