Friday, April 6, 2012


December 23, 1913 - April 1, 2012

Kathryn was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on December 23, 1913, to Charles H. and Myrtle M. Maurer (née Parker). Her maternal and paternal grandparents were among the first settlers of Clark and Taylor counties in Wisconsin.
She is survived by her four children: Rex C. Hansen (Shirlee) of Earleville, Illinois; Susan A. Bereika (Gerald) of Rhinebeck, New York; Martha V. Wilson of Davis, California; and Margaret F. Vetter (Andrew Brendler) of Lagrangeville, New York. She is also survived by six grandchildren – Kari Hansen, Kristian Hansen, Laura Abbott, Ryan Wilson, Evan Wilson, Jacob Brendler – and four great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her sister, Enola; her parents; and both of her husbands, Rex E. Hansen in 1936 and Warren H. Vetter in 1991.
Kathryn earned her bachelor's degree in Deaf Education from Milwaukee Teachers' College. She began her career teaching hearing impaired children in Sheboygan and Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and taught for a time in Evansville, Indiana. Most of her career, however, was in Danville, Illinois, where she taught for 34 years. During that time, she also did graduate study at the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana.
Kathryn loved to travel. As a girl, she often traveled to the Western United States with her parents, especially to California, Oregon, and Washington, where she had many aunts, uncles, and cousins. As an adult, she continued traveling throughout the United States and in Canada, England, Scotland, and France.
With all her traveling, however, she always loved returning to Wisconsin. As a girl, she had spent many vacations with her grandparents in Perkinstown and Medford. As an adult, she brought her children to spend the summer in Perkinstown almost every year at the house in which her grandmother had lived on Kathryn Lake (named for one of her great-aunts).
After retiring from teaching, Kathryn lived at her home in Perkinstown from May through October for 16 years. During that time, she enjoyed gardening, birdwatching with the Chequamegon Bird Club, and serving as organist for the Perkinstown Community Church. The remaining months of each year she spent traveling and visiting with her children.
In 1999 she moved to New York State and in 2005, to California, where she lived until her death at the age of 98.