News Death Notice
ELLISON, Attorney Kathy Lee 67, of Dayton, died on Saturday, January 4, 2014. She surrendered gracefully after an 18-month fight with breast cancer
. Kathy lived in Oxford, OH from 1989 until the onset of the cancer in 2012. Kathy was born in Mansfield, OH to Joseph and Lois Ellison. She graduated from Smith College in 1968 with a degree in sociology, and later earned a master's degree in education from The Ohio State University
, and a J.D. from University of Dayton. After she completed law school, she hung out her own shingle. As a sole practitioner, she provided affordable legal services to working-class families in Dayton for more than a third of a century. Kathy was active in the women's movement, Girl Scouting, the Dayton Jewish Film Festival, volunteer gardening through Metroparks, fair housing, Democratic politics in Butler County, preservation of SunWatch (a native American village in Dayton), LUNAFEST (a festival of short films by, for, and about women), and other progressive causes. She was profiled in Judith Ezekiel's 2002 book Feminism in the Heartland, as a key organizer of the Dayton women's movement in the 1970s. She was also an avid reader and a film enthusiast. In 2002, she was honored with the Classical Association of the Middle West and South award for helping her daughter, Lindsay, reinstate the Latin department at her high school in Oxford, Ohio. Surviving her are: her daughter Lindsay Meck of New York City; her partner and caregiver Phil Hinrichs of Dayton; her sister Jane Ellison Usher and her sons, Sam and Jack Usher, of Los Angeles; her brother Robert Ellison and his wife Karen of Parkersburg, WV and their children, Jennifer Ellison of Madison, WI, and Joseph Ellison of Columbus; her brother Peter Ellison of Mansfield and his daughter, Jaime Wheeler of Santa Monica, CA; and her former husband of 33 years, Stuart Meck of Trenton, NJ. A memorial celebration will be held in Dayton on Sunday, January 19, at 12:30 p.m. at the Neon Movie Theater, 130 East Fifth Street, where Kathy was a regular, preferring movies where "people behaved well." Before she died, Ellison requested that any memorial contributions be made to Planned Parenthood, Dayton Project Minors Fund (2314 Auburn Avenue, Cincinnati, OH 45219). Or alternatively, in her words, "take Phil Hinrichs to lunch."