SHARON, PA (MyValleyTributes) – What Kate wanted those who knew and loved her to remember about her life was not the day she died but how she lived.
Born Cathryn Ann Coyne on June 18, 1952, in Lansing, Michigan, the second child of Dr. John F. Coyne and Marilyn Ashe Coyne, Kate came to Sharon in 1960 where she attended St. Joseph’s School and graduated from Sharon High School in 1970.
For several years, she assisted the late Fred Hoffmaster, DDS, in his practice until her marriage and the birth of the three most important people in her life.
Experience as a candy striper and a desire to be a nurse prompted Kate to complete the Practical Nurse Program at Mercer Count Vo-Tech in 1985, a class she served as secretary. In December 1989, Kate was honored to receive her registered nursing diploma from the Sharon General Hospital School of Nursing as its class vice president.
As a registered staff nurse in the ICU/CCU at Warren General (now St. Joseph’s) Hospital in Warren, Ohio, she found her true love and passion, caring for others in their time of need, putting others first, serving them in a way she would have wanted those to care for anyone she loved. Living by this motto, Kate strived to share this mission with many new nurses under her tutelage.
While raising three sons, working full time and attending classes at night, Kate received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree with honors from Penn State University, reaching another self-appointed goal.
She was employed by UPMC Shenango from September 2000 until her retirement earlier this year, a staff registered nurse on IMCU and Two West.
The DAISY Award was bestowed upon Kate in 2011, a nationally-recognized nursing honor that awards “extraordinary nurses for their compassion and skill while caring for patients”. Nominated by the surviving children of a man she cared for until his death, she never told her sons or siblings of this honor. A private person, Kate always believed she was only doing what she loved and never felt any public notice was necessary. Numerous touching testimonials and tributes from her patients and their families were carefully preserved among her personal effects, in her mind their kind words and gratitude its own reward.
Her nursing demeanor was impeccable, always the very image of what a nurse should be. She took great pride in her grooming, uniform, discretion and professionalism. Physical challenges in recent years never kept her from giving the best she could. The care she received during recent hospital stays spoke volumes about the staff’s feelings and respect for her, from medical staff to aides to support staff. She could greet most by name and inquire about their families
Kate sang second soprano for the Shenango Valley Chorale in its early years and she loved going to yard sales and “quainting” in antique shops. She could be lost for hours going through the sepia tints of photos and old postcards, musing about the stories behind the anonymous faces and words. Her condo was decorated with great taste and whimsy, every single item with a story or a history, chosen with great care. Her laugh was a joy to the ears.
Kate’s baking skills were legendary. Her generous “thank you” brownies, banana breads, cakes and desserts delighted staffs in countless medical offices, therapy venues, hospital departments, her condo complex. She repaid every kindness threefold, always received with much enthusiasm and hearty appetites. No one left her house empty-handed.
Planning the upcoming Coyne Family reunion was her latest focus. Like a kid herself, Kate delighted in special activities and surprises for the little ones and usually immersed herself in their company at the event
Kate always believed her greatest gifts were the ones she left behind, her sons, their wives and children. A passionate mother and “Gram”, she delighted in Brian J. Burns and his wife, Debbie, Neshannock Township and son, Timothy D. Burns and his wife, Julie, Bellefonte Pennsylvania. Shining stars in her universe were her precious grandchildren, Brendan James and Briana Marie Burns, Neshannock and Ava Grace, Brayden Andrew and Lucas Daniel Burns, Bellefonte.
Celebrating her life while mourning their loss are her siblings, Mary Jane Spadin and husband, Al, Schellsburg, Pennsylvania, Kevin J. Coyne, Fairfax, Virginia, Michael D. Coyne and wife, Lori, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Rosemary T. Coyne, Albuquerque, New Mexico and Joseph A. Coyne, Hermitage, Pennsylvania and sister-in-law, Patricia Coyne, Cheltenham, Pennsylvania. She was “Aunt Kate” to numerous nieces and nephews throughout the country in the Burns, Coyne, Freeman and Nelson families.
She will be reunited with the beloved who preceded her in death; her parents and brother, Patrick J. Coyne, late of Sharon, Pennsylvania; an infant brother, Brian Coyne and a beloved son, Andrew Michael Burns whose passing she commemorated on June 1 at a special Mass.
A former member of St. Joseph Church in Sharon, Kate was a devoted parishioner for many years at Notre Dame Church, Hermitage, Pennsylvania, participating in the choir as her schedule allowed.
An organ donor and strong advocate for the program, Kate will live on in more than the spirits of those who loved her. Her wishes for contributions in her name are that they serve others in need, anything that will serve a lasting purpose.
Calling hours will be 4:00 – 8:00 p.m. on Tuesday, June 11 in J. Bradley McGonigle Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc., 1090 East State Street, Sharon.
Mass of Christian Burial will be 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, June 12 in the Church of Notre Dame, 2325 Highland Road, Hermitage, with the Very Rev. Richard Allen, as celebrant.
Interment will be in St. Rose Cemetery, Hermitage.