Kathryn "Katie" Irene Blose Carter, 84, of Cary, passed away peacefully in her home surrounded by loved ones on April 30. A beloved wife, mother and friend, she was a tireless defender of those who were less fortunate, both people and animals.
Katie was born in Lewistown, PA on May 10, 1930 to Margaret E. Blose and Ellsworth L. Blose. At age 12, she moved to Philadelphia to live with her aunt, uncle and cousins. She attended nursing school, and worked as an operating room nurse at Philadelphia General and Episcopal hospitals.
In June 1954, she attended at bachelor-bachelorette dance at Ft. Dix, New Jersey where she met her future husband, Lt. Robert A Carter (Bob). They married four weeks later and were together for more than 60 years. They had three daughters: Karen, Susan, and Robin.
She lived the life of an Army wife until 1971, moving every year or so, supporting her husband's career and raising her three daughters and numerous dogs, including through her husband's absences in Iran and Vietnam. Among the places she lived were Ft. Bragg, NC; Ft. Benning, GA; Tucson, AZ; Redstone Arsenal, AL; Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD; Ft. Leavenworth, KS; Queenscliff, Australia; and West Point, NY.
During this time, she was an active volunteer in the community. She volunteered for the American Red Cross as a Gray Lady and dental assistant, assisting injured service members. She took other Army wives under her wing. She also was actively involved with her children's activities and schools, always both an encouraging force for, and fierce defender of, her daughters.
When her husband retired from the Army in 1971, the family moved to San Antonio, TX. There Katie became an Army Casework Service volunteer through Brooke Army Medical Center and soon after became Chair of the Case Aide Committee of Army Community Service. Much of her work focused on families in crisis and victims of domestic abuse.
During this period, she also became involved with the women's rights movement and worked enthusiastically for passage of the Equal Rights Amendment. She joined the National Organization for Women, bought a subscription to Ms. Magazine, continued to instill in her daughters a belief that they could do and be whatever they wished...and knocked down any barriers that stood in their way.
In 1974, the family relocated to Greensboro, North Carolina, where Katie worked for the Greensboro Association for Retarded Citizens, Inc., as day care director for disabled children. When the family moved to Cary in 1977, she worked as a private caregiver for a young disabled adult and later for the Tammy Lynn Center.
Throughout these 20+ years, Katie received numerous awards and commendations for her leadership, achievements and tireless service to others.
In 1990, she became a real estate sales assistant in model homes for Westminster Homes and later K. Hovnanian. Residential real estate and interior design had always been one of her passions. Her daughters remember a favorite weekend pastime was "going to look at houses." She enjoyed a successful 17-year career in real estate, earning commendations from her employer and numerous letters of praise and thanks from her customers. She retired in 2007.
Katie was an open, loving free spirit: vibrant, young at heart, strong, passionate, committed, energetic and intelligent. She enjoyed socializing, music, dancing, travel, reading, the ocean and contemporary art and design. Her love and generosity were unlimited; she found something good in every person, and was irresistibly lovable as a result. She had a powerful, positive effect on everyone who met her. She loved people and animals, and adopted many homeless dogs over her lifetime. Her husband and daughters worshipped her. They and all who were close to her feel blessed and honored to have known and loved her.
The family would like to express their love and gratitude to Katie's companions over the last two years, Nikki MacDonald and Susan Webb. They enabled Katie to retain her independence and gave her love and support. She loved them both in return.
Katie is survived by her loving husband Robert Alexander Carter of Cary, NC; her daughters Karen Kathryn Carter-Marshall (Miles Marshall) of Double Oak, TX, Susan Elizabeth Carter (Ricardo Contreras) of Arlington, VA, and Robin Ann Carter of Cary, NC. She is also survived by her cousin Violet Cornish of Philadelphia, PA, numerous other Pennsylvania-based relatives; her dogs Nikki and Emily, and several granddogs and grandcats. Her light will shine forever.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Katie's name to the Humane Society and the SPCA.
Online condolences may be sent to the family through www.brownwynnecary.com