Bernadette Choplinski, a teacher at Birch Lane Elementary School in Massapequa for 43 years who was born in Wainscott and returned there to live after she retired, died on Monday after a short illness at Southside Hospital in Bay Shore. She was 83.
Though Ms. Choplinski lived elsewhere for decades, her family said that she always considered Wainscott her beloved hometown. She was born there on Dec. 26, 1929, to Mary and Ernest D. Field. She attended the Wainscott School and East Hampton High School, and graduated from what was then known as the State Teachers College at New Paltz.
She married Paul Choplinski in 1953 and lived in East Islip while working at the Birch Lane school, teaching fifth grade. The couple returned to the South Fork to build a retirement house in 1986 on family property in Wainscott.
Outside of the classroom, her interests included golf and gardening, her family said. She and her husband enjoyed traveling and loved children, though they had none of their own.
She is survived by a brother, Joe Field of East Northport. Another brother, Jack Field, died last year. She is also survived by eight nieces and nephews and numerous great-nieces and great-nephews.
A Mass of Christian burial for her will be said at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in East Islip tomorrow at 9:45 a.m. Burial will follow at Most Holy Trinity Catholic Church cemetery in East Hampton.