WESTFIELD – Florence Katherine “Katie“ Stallsmith, 94, passed away Sunday, August 19, 2012 in Westfield with her family at her bedside. She was born December 6, 1917 in Lancaster, OH to the late Michael and Olive Stoudt.
Katie grew up in Lancaster and attended Miami University of Ohio, where she was a member of the Delta Gamma Sorority. She earned her degree in Illinois. She married her childhood sweetheart, Roy Stallsmith, on February 23, 1943, prior to his overseas deployment during WWII. The couple moved to Illinois in 1949 where they raised their family. Katie was an elementary school teacher for 20 years.
She loved to travel. Katie and Roy toured all of the US with the exception of Oregon. They drove through Europe and cruised to numerous locations, including South America and Tahiti. In their 80’s, they traveled to the Galapagos Islands on an expedition cruise. She and Roy belonged to Experiment in International Living and through that organization, welcomed visitors from Japan, Korea and France to stay in their home.
Katie was an accomplished soprano. She performed throughout her life at many functions which included a memorable church solo when she was well past the age of 80. She brought particular joy to her family when she sang a solo at her daughter’s wedding. Katie also enjoyed playing bridge, painting, playing the piano, reading, and was a lifelong learner. After retirement, Katie and Roy moved to Tucson, AZ and lived there for over 15 years, where she was active in their retirement community as well as volunteering with breast cancer survivors. Katie and Roy moved to Westfield in 2008 to be closer to their family.
She was predeceased by Roy, the love of her life and husband of 69 years, in April of 2012. She is survived by her daughters; Nan Pease and her husband Gary of Westfield and Charlcy Oleksak and her husband Daniel of Granville; her five grandchildren, Rebecca Alexandrovich of West Springfield, Kristen Pease of Bellingham, WA, Mark Pease and his wife Marissa of Longmeadow, Nathan Oleksak of Redondo Beach, CA and Katie Oleksak of Arlington, MA; her four great-grandchildren, Nicole, Mia, Michael and Ross. Katie was a strong, spunky and vibrant woman who lived life to the fullest. Her family will forever miss her sweet smile. Katie will be joining the love of her life in the Massachusetts Veterans Memorial Cemetery.
All services are private and at the convenience of the family.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Cancer House of Hope, 86 Court Street, Westfield, MA 01085. The Toomey-O’Brien Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.