The woman, who was identified as Peggy Nadell, was found dead by her daughter Saturday morning in her single-family home on Andover Road in Valley Cottage. She had been stabbed.
Police say Nadell's daughter called the home throughout the morning, and became concerned when her mother did not answer. She then went over to the house, where she found her mother dead.
Neighbors say Nadell was a longtime member of the community, and was very vibrant.
"I heard her daughter screaming and uh, it's just deep concern and fear...and...it's just sadness," said one neighbor.
The retired human resources executive was a longtime Rockland County Democratic committeewoman.
Nadell was outspoken on environmental and women's rights issues. She fought large developments including the expansion of the Palisades Center.
She also was active in the Valley Cottage Civic Association and served on the board of Keep Rockland Beautiful.
"I met her here last week and she said, don't forget...we are going to F.I.T. and I we are going to the MET and I heard about this at the MOMA," said Joan Cohen.
Clarkstown Police are investigating the case. Authorities say Nadell's death is believed to have occurred sometime between Friday night and Saturday morning.
Police are saying that they have no reason to believe neighbors are in any danger.
Anyone with information is asked to call 845-639-5800.