Mary E. Katz

Obituary for Mary E. Katz

October 17, 1945 - March 25, 2021
Horsham, Pennsylvania | Age 75


Mary Elizabeth Kizer Katz
October 17th, 1945 - March 25th, 2021

Mary Katz, aged 75, passed away in the late evening hours of March 25th, 2021. She was born on a fall day, in rural Illinois, on October 17th, 1945, to the late Charles and Elizabeth (Cord) Kizer. However, the birth and death of Mary is not what we should focus on; instead, we remember the days and nights between her coming and going.

Mary had a wonderful childhood in Fairmount, IL, surrounded her loving family and childhood friends. She spent her days riding bikes, causing a little bit of innocent trouble, and even in her last days, could tell endless stories about all of the people from home who she loved so much. After graduating high school, she worked for a life insurance agency and kept books for other local businesses. In the early 1970s, she happened to be at a party and met a handsome Air Force officer. This chance meeting sealed her exciting life from then on.

Mary and Marty Katz were married on June 10th, 1974, after his long deployment to Asia. After a short honeymoon to Atlantic City (Mary hated the beach), she became a military wife and they traveled the world together. With stations in Louisiana and Arizona, Mary continued to work in insurance and bookkeeping. Mary and Marty welcomed their only daughter, Robin B. Katz (Rakow), in 1976. Soon after, the family moved across "the pond" to England, and then back stateside to South Carolina and Kansas. In 1984, Marty retired from the Air Force, and the family settled in the suburbs of Philadelphia, PA, where Marty grew up.

Mary was very involved in Robin's school years, serving as room mother, softball mom, Girl Scout leader, marching band treasurer, mom taxi driver, and lifelong best friend to Robin. She beautifully juggled being a mom and was always there for Robin and her friends. Affectionally known as Mom Katz by many, Mary loved each of the kids who passed through her doors. Again, the stories she would tell of the countless memories and fun in those long (but short) years of raising Robin would make you smile.

Mary became part of the Craft Funeral Home family in 1985, as she became secretary for Wesley and Herb Craft. Growing up in a funeral home family, she faithfully served the families in the area in their greatest time of need. In the mid 90s, Mary joined the Givnish Family Funeral Homes. There was not much that Mary did not do in her work, which she found incredibly rewarding. She loved the families and felt great pride for services that she provided to each and every person who walked through the funeral home doors. It is said that it takes a special person to serve both the dead and the living; Mary was that special.

In 2007, Mary was diagnosed with cancer and beat the terrible disease. We often said the treatment that saved her life caused many challenges for the rest of her days here on Earth. She, along with Marty, who faithfully cared for her, met those challenges head on. They never gave up, even on the hardest of days. She was one of the strongest women ever. She retired from her work at Craft-Givnish, and started to enjoy a slower and calmer life with Marty.

While life was difficult, the three greatest blessings in Mary's life arrived - her three granddaughters! Katherine Elizabeth, Hannah Elise, and Abigail (Abbie) Joy were the perfect medicine for healing. Katherine, Hannah, and Abbie spent many special times with their beloved Grandma Daisy (Daisy, being the dog, and the only way the young kids differentiated between their two sets of grandparents). The girls loved their shopping trips with Grandma Daisy, gardening, planting flowers, making cookies, going for walks, doing ballet, trips to Illinois (that always included a stop at Cracker Barrel), and dressing up for Halloween. They are blessed with many wonderful memories of their Grandma Daisy.

Mary also enjoyed many hobbies as retirement provided her with more time to do the things she loved. She was always working in her yard, which is still beautifully manicured and pristine. Mary also loved to read, whether it be books or newsletters, and she especially loved to read her Bible. She recently found great pleasure organizing her genealogy from both her side and from Marty's family. Mary also loved antiquing, listening to music, traveling a bit, keeping up with the royal family, chatting with neighbors, shopping, flower arranging, feeding the birds, and watching her favorite shows like the Chicago lineup, Blue Bloods, and any British TV show she could find. She really enjoyed the last several months of her life with Sharon, her companion helper, who kept Mary active, loving life, and provided her with incredible friendship. Sharon helped make sure Mary could continue to live independently, which was her greatest desire.

Left behind to carry on Mary's legacy is her beloved daughter, Robin (and Ryan) Rakow, and the lights of her life, her granddaughters, Katherine, Hannah, and Abbie. Mary is also survived by her younger brother, C. Scott Kizer (Patty), of Pittsboro, IN, whom she loved dearly. Mary also leaves behind her Uncle Donald (Carol), who was like an older brother to her, many cousins, and extended family. Mary's caring neighbors, Sharon Schmidt, and Mocha, Mary's faithful dog, also survive. She also leaves behind her work family, who she also cherished. Mary was preceded in death by her loving husband, Martin Katz, her parents, Charles and Elizabeth Kizer, her father and mother in-law, Milton and Anna Katz, her sisters-in-laws Debbie and Kay, many aunts and uncles, and her dearest friends, Nettie and Karen. Just before she left us, she told us how much she was looking forward to seeing all of her family and friends when she arrived in Heaven.

Family, friends, and coworkers from the Givnish Family Life Celebration Homes are invited to Mary's Life Celebration on Wednesday, March 31st, 2021, between 5 and 7PM, followed by her Service of Christian Burial at 7PM from Craft-Givnish of Abington 1801 Old York Rd. (at Old Welsh Rd.). Her inurnment will be private, at a later date, in Illinois. The service will be livestreamed on the Craft-Givnish Life Celebration Home facebook page starting at 7:00 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, a donation in Mary's memory can be made to two of her most favorite organizations: Samaritan's Purse, P.O. Box 3000, 801 Bamboo Rd. Boone, NC 28607 or to Wags Rescue, P.O. Box 1514 Southampton, Pa. 18966. She would also love it if you planted some of your favorite flowers in your garden to enjoy as a reminder of her.

Her family would like to thank her amazing medical team, especially Patty McGrath, Dr. Lewis, Dr. Moriconi, and in the last week, Dr. Orr. Thank you, also, to the wonderful staff at Luther Woods. Your expertise and great care helped Mary live her best life. We are forever indebted to you for giving her years of life that were not always promised.

While Mary will be missed beyond measure, she lived a full and happy life full of joy and adventure and even her share of silly shenanigans. We are forever honored to celebrate her life, and especially the wonderful memories from the day she entered this world until the day she left. We encourage you to do the same.

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Suggested Memorial Donations

  • Samaritan's Purse
    P.O. Box 3000, 801 Bamboo Rd.
    Boone, NC 28607
  • Wags Rescue
    P.O. Box 1514
    Southampton, PA 18966

Arrangements By

Craft-Givnish Funeral Home of Abington, Ltd.

1801 Old York Road
Abington, PA 19001
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