Kathleen Louise Busch


January 7, 1931 – October 26, 2014

Treasured wife, mother and friend, Kathleen “Kathy” Busch passed away on Sunday, October 26, 2014. Kathleen was a modest woman who would probably have rather not had a notice of her passing, but her family is proud of her and want to share some of her accomplishments.

Excellence in Academics

Kathy was a lifelong Seattleite and a proud graduate of Bryant Elementary, Roosevelt High School, and the University of Washington. She was valedictorian at Roosevelt and was selected for Mortar Board at UW, where she earned a BA in Latin. She taught Latin and Spanish at St. Nicholas Private Girls School, Denny Junior High, and Ingraham High School.

Alpha Omicron Pi

Kathleen was a devoted member of Alpha Omicron Pi Sorority for over 65 years, serving as President during college. As an alumna Kathy served for many years as Upsilon Chapter Advisor, active member of the Seattle Alumnae Chapter, Upsilon Corporation Board, and as a NW Regional Officer. Due to Kathy’s exemplary work with Upsilon Chapter of Alpha Omicron Pi, an annual award was created in her name, the Kathy Busch Award established in January, 2014. Kathy also received numerous other AOPi awards and held several AOPi positions within the state and region.

Daughter, Wife and Mother

Kathy was the only child of DeWitt and Louise Oliver. She remained close to them throughout their lives. She and her family lived only five houses away in a house her grandfather built, sharing many common interests, such as her children, gardening and AOPi.

Married in 1953, Kathy and Bruce welcomed their first child Ann (1960), followed by Carolyn (1962), Bruce (1965) and Keith (1967). Kathy continued to teach by helping each of her children successfully graduate from high school and college with high marks; she was a master editor. In addition, she was her sons’ biggest motivator for obtaining Eagle Scout. In 1992, Bruce and Kathy gained an honorary daughter in Paula (Taylor) Busch (son Bruce’s wife).

Her children affectionately call her “Crazy” and “Mama Jo Lee” due to her quirky sense of humor. She never witnessed a clutsy fall she didn’t laugh at, including her own. Her husband often referred to her as “The Plant Lady” for her love of gardening.

Kathy and Bruce are the proud grandparents of seven grandchildren: Laura (15) and Heather (12) Madsen (Ann); Wyatt (11) Frasier (Carolyn); Jackson (15) and Connor (13) Busch (Bruce); and Grayson (14) and Harper (11) Busch (Keith).

Animal Lover, Creative & Enjoyed Travel

Along with their children, Kathy and Bruce raised a menagerie of dogs and birds. An inspired gardener, Kathleen worked at Molbak’s for over 20 years. She was also a talented doll-maker and writer, famous for her annual Christmas craft fair The Gnome Home and newsletters. She and Bruce often drove (that’s right, drove) their family to Mexico over the Christmas Holiday while their children were young. They continued traveling to Hawaii and Mexico every year as empty nesters. When they weren’t out of state they were shuttling back and forth to their retreat on Vashon Island. Kathy was an active member of Third Church of Christ, Scientist, Seattle.

Please join us in celebrating Kathleen Louise Busch on Saturday at 2pm, November 8, 2014 at Washelli’s Funeral Home.

Donations in her memory are welcome; checks payable to “Marilyn Keller Lundberg Scholarship Fund” or “Upsilon Chapter, Alpha Omicron Pi” (c/o Ann Beardsley, 2430 136th Pl SW, Lynnwood, 98087).

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