Time, as marked by the stopwatch on her signature round glasses, ceased for our dear Annetta Karam, 98, on January 15, 2014.
Born in Akron to Henry and Freda (nee Nicola) Karam on July 17, 1915, Annetta, also known as "Babe," grew up in Canton, Ohio. Following her graduation from Canton McKinley High School in 1933, Annetta's lifelong passion for learning began in earnest. She attended The Ohio State University, received a BA in Social Work from New York University, and a MS in Social Work from Columbia University. At age 90, Annetta returned to school, enrolling at The University of Akron in its 60+ program. She also audited classes in The University of Akron's School of Law.
Annetta lived a full life; following the advice she freely shared with others -- to follow your dreams. Her dreams began in New York City with her first husband, George R. Koury and concluded back in her hometown with her second husband, Dr. Harvey A. Karam. Along the way, she was employed as a social worker for the Children's Aid Society in New York City and the Children's Services Board in Akron. She also traveled around the world 10-times, read voraciously, bowled, golfed, shopped 'till she dropped, collected camels that signified her Lebanese heritage, and found joy in attending the opera. Most significantly, she always enjoyed a diverse group of friends who loved and protected her.
Active and engaged in her community and church, Annetta was a member of St. Joseph Melkite Catholic Church, the Summit County Historical Society and Silver Lake Country Club. She was also a volunteer at Akron General Medical Center, where she received recognition for 10,000 hours of service over a 30+ year period of time, and a member of the Akron Woman's City Club.
In addition to her parents, Annetta was preceded in death by the two loves in her life, Harvey A. Karam and George R. Koury; her brothers, Dr. Adib Karam and Magistrate Ernest Karam (Lucille); her sisters, Ada Khazaal (Fouad), and Lucille Elias (James); sister-in-law, Laura Karam Salem; niece and nephew-in-law, Rosemary Elias and Norman Weiss; and stepson, Richard Karam.
She is survived by nieces, Shiela Karam Dean and Grace Khazaal Weiss; nephews, Michael Elias, William Elias (Janet) and Greg Karam (Sue); stepson, H. Thomas Karam (Joan); stepgranddaughter, Adele Karam (Dave Brocket); stepdaughter-in-law, Emily Karam; and stepgranddaughter, E. Ann Karam.
Funeral service for Annetta will be held Monday, January, 20, 2014 at 11 a.m. at St. Joseph Melkite Catholic Church, 600 W. Exchange Street, Akron, OH 44302. Friends may call at the church an hour before the Service. Interment will follow at Holy Cross Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, it was Annetta's wish that donations be made to the Dr. Harvey A. and Annetta Karam Endowed Scholarship for BS/MD students at The University of Akron Foundation, Akron, OH 44325-2603. Annetta and Harvey established this scholarship to help students achieve their dream of a medical career. Please visit www.hummelcares.com to share memories or condolences.
Published in Akron Beacon Journal from Jan. 18 to Jan. 19, 2014