Kathy Sue Porath, age 58 years young, passed away unexpectedly on Monday, August 17, at her home in Findlay, Ohio.
Born on December 23, 1961 in Bryan, Ohio to Doris (Colon) and Robert “Bob” Porath, she used to joke that she was the best Christmas present her siblings ever received. She also relished in the fact that before arriving home on Christmas Day, her dad took the 4 older siblings to the Five and Dime store up town in West Unity, making them purchase presents to celebrate her birth.
Kathy, aka Kate, aka “Shorty” as her siblings affectionately called her, enjoyed growing up on the family farm, and shared stories of her horse April when her children were young. She was active in sports, such as volleyball and track, and graduated from Hilltop High School in 1980.
Following graduation, Kate followed her father’s path and joined the Army. She was stationed in Germany, where she earned a sharpshooter decoration, and drove trucks during her time in service.
Kate lived in California for a short time after her stint in the Army, but ultimately returned to Williams County where she lived, worked, and raised her family for the next 20 years.
While her children continued the tradition of being Cadets in the Millcreek-West Unity School District, Kathy stretched her legs working in several “landmarks” within the community. Mendelson Egg Company, Fulton Fabricating, Kamco, Hilltop, Pizza Oven (aka Wyse Guys), and Sunoco on the Turnpike are just a few. She instilled her work ethic into her children, who both worked with her at one time or another...whether it was putting together flashlights for 1 penny a piece for fun, emptying pencil sharpeners in classrooms at Hilltop, tossing pizzas, or pumping gas.
After her children both graduated from Hilltop and left the nest, Kate moved to Findlay to start a new chapter. She started her career at Lowe’s distribution in Findlay and bought her home. She recently celebrated her 15th anniversary with Lowe’s, where she was a BDC administration clerk.
Outside of work on a typical day, Kathy could usually be found at home with her faithful dog Jack, sitting in her chair, with a cigarette in one hand, a bottle of Pepsi Max in the other, and yarn and crochet needles resting on her lap. In addition to making items for her family and friends, she also donated hundreds of blankets and hats to stillborn babies in memory of her eldest daughter, as well as various organizations she found needing help on Facebook.
Kathy enjoyed traveling, whether it was to Iowa to visit her daughter’s family, or going all over the United States and Europe with her son and the Ohio University Marching 110. Most recently she went to New York City for their performance in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. However, the trip of a lifetime was her last international trip with the 110 in 2016, allowing her to visit her dream city Paris, where she was able to reach the top of the Eiffel Tower.
Kathy was a self-proclaimed tomboy, who typically carried a wallet, not a purse, and rocked a short minimal effort perm almost her entire adult life. She told it like it was, and usually didn’t care what other people thought of her. She liked college football better than the NFL, and was disappointed in what is likely going to be a non-season this year. She was stubborn, hardworking, dedicated, caring, talented, and loved by many. The shock of her death has impacted many within the community, and she will be truly missed.
Kathy is survived by her mother, Doris Porath, her children, Jessica (Kevin) James of Palo, Iowa and Joshua (Sally) Boyer of The Plains, Ohio and her 5 grandchildren: Charlotte and Tiberius James, and Joseph, Jayson, and Jordan Boyer. She is also survived by her 4 older siblings: Judy Karnes of Bryan, John Porath of Bryan, Connie (Ned) Ruffer of West Unity/Coldwater Lake, MI, and Karen (Brad) Stucky of Bryan, in addition to numerous nieces and nephews, cousins, and close friends.
She was preceded in death by her infant daughter Bridgett Boyer, and her father Robert Porath.
Due to the current COVID pandemic, the family will be holding her graveside service and Celebration of Life next year. Arrangements will be shared at a later date, and will be handled by Oberlin-Turnbull Funeral Home, West Unity Chapel.
Those planning an expression of sympathy are asked to consider memorial contributions be made to Kathy’s children, which can be organized through Oberlin-Turnbull Funeral Home.
Condolences may be sent to the family or the online guest book may be signed at www.oberlinturnbull.com
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