Kathryn Ann Bradley Ramsey, 68, passed away Dec. 24, 2017, at Riverside Methodist Hospital in Columbus, with her loving husband at her side.
Kathryn was born May 21, 1949, in Toledo to William C. Bradley and Rita Coleen Van Lear Bradley.
The oldest of three sisters, she was the rock to her entire family. Determined to get a college education, she worked her way through the University of Toledo as a cook at a ranch in northern Michigan and in the archives of the Toledo Public Library. When she graduated in 1973, she was fortunate enough to get a job teaching in Bellefontaine City Schools where she would spend the next 31 years creatively, enthusiastically and lovingly teaching social studies, history, language arts and lifelong skills on how to live life. Generations remember her classroom and the slogan in the front: “Life is a journey not a destination.” She was never satisfied with what she called the mediocre and believed in and expected only the very best of herself, her students and of everyone she met. She believed and taught that anyone can be another person’s “champion,” that anyone can triumph in life and she fostered those attitudes in her students.
In 1975, she met her future husband, Rick, in the parking lot at Northeastern and they were married at the First Christian Church in Bellefontaine on July 1, 1978. She graduated from Wright State University with her master’s in education the same year. Over the years, she served on many committees for the Bellefontaine City Schools, was the social studies research teacher for several years where she developed books and resources for every grade level. She was nominated a Jennings Scholar and treasured that. But what she treasured most were the memories of all the many special students she had over the years.
Kathryn was always looking for new ideas, new ways to reach her students, new things that she could beg, borrow or buy to help make what she taught come to life. Many trips to Columbus or Dayton to buy authentic “souvenirs” for her students were made. On every vacation trip, whether it was to Michigan or England, she was always looking for something that could enrich her teaching.
She was predeceased in death by her grandparents, Bryan and Clara Bradley and Coe and Mary Ruth Van Lear, her stepgrandfather, Bob Wheaton, and her beloved stepfather, Ron Marr.
Kathryn is survived by her husband of 39 years, Richard Ramsey; her mother, Coleen Marr of Toledo; her sisters, Karen (Dale) Klofta of Temperance, Mich., and Janice (Daniel) Matey of Traverse City, Mich.; beloved and adored honorary grandchildren, Allison, Nathan and Laney Wallace; her truly special friends, Nick and Angie Wallace, who gave her one of the greatest gifts when she became “Grandma Honey” to their kids; her aunt, Anne Bradley of Toledo; her brother-in-law, “Skip” (Jane) Ramsey of Indiana; sister-in-law, Linda (Frank) Walls of Mansfield; Fred and Ruth Meredith of Bellefontaine, who became her “parents” as they gave her the love and acceptance she so desperately needed; and many nieces and nephews, who loved their Aunt Kathy for her love of them.
Her love, wisdom, gentleness, generosity and kindness touched hundreds of people over the years. She always believed the best of everyone. She always knew that she was Christ’s light in a dark world and her faith moved her in every decision she made and every action she took and was the foundation of her being. Long before it became popular and a bracelet, she would ask herself, “What would Jesus do?”. She rarely, if ever, thought anything negative about anyone and strove to see the very best in them. She never saw a person in need that she didn’t want to help. She never saw a student that she didn’t think she could help. She will be sorely missed by those who loved her.
Calling is from 4 to 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 5, at Eichholtz Daring & Sanford Funeral Home & Cremation Center, Bellefontaine. Pastor Larry Novak officiates a memorial service at 4 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 6, at the First Lutheran Church, Bellefontaine.
Memorial contributions may be made to the American Diabetes Association, 1900 Crown Park Court — Suite H, Columbus, OH 43235.
Condolences may be expressed at www.edsfh.com.