Katheryn L. “Kathy” Olson, age 69, of Casper, WY passed away April 18, 2019 at her home. Kathy was born December 6, 1949 in Lincoln, NE to Dr. William and Ann (Holscher) O'Keefe. Not long after Kathy’s birth, the O’Keefes made the move to Casper, where they would become vibrant community members. Kathy attended St. Anthony’s Catholic School, Natrona County High School, and the University of Wyoming (UW).
Her return to Casper following UW brought her the introduction to the absolute love of her life, Gary Olson, in 1971. Following a brief courtship, Kathy and Gary married on December 18, 1971. A move to Laramie, WY to allow Gary to obtain his Master’s Degree followed, and Kathy spent her days plumping Gary up with two-sandwich lunches. After the degree was earned, Kathy and Gary returned to Casper to start a family. What followed was decades of love for her family, devotion to her friends, consistent care for her career (22 years at Crest Hill Elementary which included a birthday cookie for every child, every year, on every birthday) and building life-long friendships that she truly cherished.
Her children, Tim, Stephanie and Matt, provided Kathy with the family she had always desired and she dedicated her life to attending countless sporting events and club activities, making each birthday important, hosting every holiday for her six siblings and their families, and generally being the mother, friend, daughter, sister and wife that all should aspire to be. In addition, she brightened many a day with her hand-written notes and thoughtful gifts, which often came unannounced.
The greatest joy of her life was her marriage to Gary, and their commitment to one another was surpassed only by their commitment to their children. Their life was filled with an abundance of close friendships and resulted in a deep partnership until Gary’s untimely passing in 2005. Following Gary’s loss, Kathy committed herself to planning and preparing the wedding ceremonies of her three children, and grandchildren soon followed. Her life brightened with the birth of each of her seven grandchildren.
As the oldest of seven children, Kathy remained a devout older sibling to all five sisters and one brother, as well as her multiple nieces and nephews. Her deeply forged friendships, ranging from her St. A’s girls, to the Great Entertainers, to her Crest Hill buddies, to her Garden Girls, and her life-long best friends have offered love and adoration beyond measure. Kathy’s disdain for the Wyoming wind was offset by her love for the people of Casper, and the fondness for her neighborhood.
In addition to her parents, Kathy was preceded in death by her loving husband, Gary, along with her niece, Katie. She is survived by her son, Timothy (Anna) Olson, daughter, Stephanie (Dan) Sullivan, and son, Matthew (Andrea) Olson, as well as grandchildren, Gabriel, Claire and Isabel Olson; Finley and Margot Sullivan; and, Audrey and Hendrix Olson; as well as sisters, Genny (George) Pancratz, Peg (Mike) Doyle, Mary (Rod) Litzel, Tricia (Mick) Little and Cece (Mike) Ihnat, and brother, Bill O’Keefe.
A Memorial Mass will be held on Friday, April 26, 2019 at 2:00 PM at St. Anthony's Catholic Church. Memorial contributions may be made to Interfaith or Central Wyoming Hospice.
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