Patricia Marie Dext, who with her husband had worked in, managed, or helped build many of Montauk’s motels and restaurants, died at Stony Brook University Hospital on Sunday with her family by her side. She was 79 and had been ill, her family said.
The Breakers, the Tipperary Inn, the Montauk Motel, the Flying Fish restaurant, and the Star Island Yacht Club were among the establishments she and her husband had a hand in.
In the early 1970s, the Dext family moved to Montauk, having heard about it from fishing friends. They started vacationing there, and then decided it was a fine place to live. Over the years, they made many friends in Montauk and lived in several locations around the hamlet.
When her husband, Frank Dext, died in 1996, Ms. Dext worked at the front desk of the Neptune Motel.
Ms. Dext was born in Manhattan on May 5, 1934, to Patrick Cahalin and the former Marie Willmont. She grew up in Manhattan and in the Catskills. While her father was on deployments with the Navy, she lived with a grandmother.
She married Frank Dext in 1954. They had six children: Michael, Susan, Pattiann, Frankie, Johnny Boy, and Barbara. While raising them, she helped her husband run a plumbing business in High Bridge, N.J.
Ms. Dext spent the last three years living at Windmill Village in East Hampton, and while there she became active in the nearby East Hampton Town Senior Citizens Center. She was an enthusiastic reader, and painted, sketched, and made gifts for family and friends.
She is survived by three of her children: Michael Dext of Springs, Susan Maillet of New Brunswick, Canada, and Pattiann Hinman of Erie, Pa. Two sons and a daughter died before her. Twelve grandchildren, 10 great-grandchildren, 15 nieces and nephews, and 10 great-nieces and great-nephews also survive.
Visiting hours will be on Sunday from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Yardley and Pino Funeral Home in East Hampton. Ms. Dext will be cremated. Her funeral will be private.
Donations toward the cost of arrangements and cremation can be sent in care of Michael Dext to 704 Springs-Fireplace Road, East Hampton 11937.