Klath, Charlotte, age 90 of Minneapolis, passed away on July 5th, 2019. Preceded in death by her husband and the love of her life of 40 years, Paul. Survived by her children, Kathleen, Mary, Tim (Kay) and Michele; Grandchildren— whom she adored, Ryan (Trace) and Danielle (Pat); siblings, Jim, Gal (Donna), Cathy, Joan, and David (Jackie).
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Mom was a hard worker and expected nothing less from her children. She led by example. Her undeniable independence, her strength, work ethic, and drive are values she passed along to her children and grandchildren. Mom was a very proud woman who stood tall and didn’t shy away from voicing her opinion. I think that’s what Dad loved most about her. Mom retired from Sears after 25 years in accounting. Her greatest joy was spending time with her grandchildren. What wonderful role models her and Dad were to Ryan and Danielle. Always so proud of them, always so loving, always welcomed them with open arms, and big hugs. Each time they entered my parent’s home they were met with a standing ovation. They encouraged Ryan and Danielle to have a voice, to stand up for their neighbor, show empathy, be grateful, give back, really listen to what people have to say and most importantly, be kind. Mom and Dad showed endless respect, love, and devotion to family and friends. They were and will continue to be, an inspiration to us all.
Mom loved to decorate, paint, travel, and throw elegant dinner parties with Dad. Everyone always went home with treats. At the holidays, Mom and Dad were such giving people, our dinner table was always open to everyone. As children and throughout our lives we never needed a reason to receive a hug from them. They were a constant source of love and support. We never went to bed as children with any doubt that they were there for us. What we wouldn’t give to feel their embrace just one last time, it always made us feel that everything was okay. Or at the very least, thank them again for the greatest childhood. The infamous Florida family road trip with our dog, drive-in movies, family gatherings, persuading Dad to play Frankenstein as we giggled and said good-night, the comforting smells of Christmas, late night gatherings with dear friends Claudia and Gary, and Mom’s early Saturday morning wake-up calls with the vacuum, are all loving childhood memories we will laugh about and cherish always. Mom was an avid reader and a raving chocoholic, and she didn’t pass up reading a good book or even a movie magazine now and again while eating her Milky Way. She never met a candy bar she didn’t like and there wasn’t a clever enough hiding place that could keep her from finding yours. Needless to say, she loved Easter, Valentine’s Day, Halloween and Christmas! She also loved to sing. The memories of Dad smiling and winking at us in Church while Mom sang at the top of her lungs makes us smile to this day. It wasn’t uncommon to hear her singing from down the block (a little embarrassing when walking home from school with friends).
Mom’s elegance and grace are surpassed by none. We were so lucky to have her in our lives. She will be dearly missed.
Alzheimer’s stole what was most precious in our Mother’s life— memories, connections, the familiar landmarks of a lifetime that we all come to rely on. We watched as fear invaded our Mother’s eyes, a woman who never feared anything. We were helpless as we watched her slowly try to hang onto memories that marked her lifetime until finally, the memories were no more.
A reminder for us all to hug the people who are so dear to us and let them know how much they are loved.