CONNECTICUT – Sonja Mae (Anderson) Kirk, LCSW, (SMAK222), 71, also known as Petie, passed on January 29, 2014 of cancer. Sonja was the daughter of the late Sven and Mae Wyman Anderson of Blandford. Educated in the Blandford and Westfield schools, Sonja then attended University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and Indiana University School of Social Work.
Sonja loved life and lived hers to the fullest. With her daughter, Sonja visited the 50 states, 18 countries, and 3 continents. With the Sound of New England Barbershop Chorus, she enjoyed music, friendship, and more travel. With the Red Hat Society, she enjoyed all manner of activities, with lots of laughter. She organized innumerable family outings and gatherings. Wherever she went, she brought the fun and the love with her. Sonja was devoted to helping others as shown through her work as a social worker in the East Hartford Public Schools. She also volunteered for 4-H, her churches, and the Blandford Fair. Most recently, she volunteered for the American Red Cross Disaster Services Mental Health team where she was the Mental Health Lead for the states of Connecticut and Rhode Island.
Sonja is survived by her daughter, Colleen Kirk (Christopher “Duff” Dufrense) of White Plains, NY; her brother, Lynn (Shirley) Anderson of Charlestown, RI; her sister, Carol (John) Whalen of Westfield, MA; her significant other, Diquel Mendes of West Hartford, CT; her former husband, Peter Kirk of Cleveland, TN; her nephews, Eric Anderson of Portland, CT; Christopher Anderson (Linda Reeder) of New Haven, CT; Joseph Whalen (Amy) of West Springfield, MA; her niece, Michelle Downs (Steven) of Westfield, MA; her great-nephew Brendan Anderson and great-nieces Rebekah Anderson, Karenna Downs, Kailey Downs, Annabella Whalen, and Jennifer Whalen. She is also survived by many dear, supportive, extended family and friends who will keenly feel the loss of Sonja’s compassion and exuberance.
A celebration of her life will be held on Wednesday, February 5th at 2:00 p.m. at the Bolton, CT Congregational Church, where she was a member for over 20 years, the Rev. Charles H. Ericson, presiding. A luncheon will follow in the church hall. Calling hours will be Tuesday from 4:00-7:00 p.m. at the Watkins Funeral Home, 142 East Center Street, Manchester, CT. Interment will be at the convenience of the family.
Memorial gifts may be made to the American Printing for the Blind, P.O. Box 6389, 1839 Frankfort Avenue, Louisville, Kentucky 40206.