Karen Blomain

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August 15, 2012

Karen Blomain, a retired Keystone College and Kutztown University professor, poet and novelist died on Wednesday, August 15, 2012 at the home of her daughter in Union Dale, Pa.

When faced with grave illness, Karen continued to say with a smile that she was "lucky, lucky." Her greatest joys in life were her family, her travels, her innumerable best friends and teaching how to write from the heart. All who knew her realize that we are the ones who are "lucky, lucky" to have had her in our lives.

Her first novel, "A Trick of Light," first published in 2000, began what was to be a trilogy delineating the lives of three women over a period of 60 years. "The Season of Lost Children," the second novel in the series, carried the lives of Blomain's main characters into another generation. The third book in the trilogy, "I'm Still Me," remains unfinished. A highly regarded poet, she authored several books of poetry, and her work appeared in numerous literary periodicals.

Born in Scranton, Karen was a daughter of Thomas and Lucille Blomain.

Survivors are her husband, playwright Michael Downend; brother, Thomas Blomain, and fiancée Jessica Engel; sisters, Lucille Lyman and Donna Vandegrift; children, James McHale, Dr. Kielty Turner and husband R.J. Turner, Brett McHale and wife Lori McHale; grandchildren, Kayla McHale, Colin and Claire Turner, Lilliana and Dylan McHale. Also surviving are her six step-children, John, Mark, Patrick and Aaron Downend; Kenwyn Loefflad and Amanda Downend Modrovsky.

Arrangements for a Celebration of Karen's life will be made at the convenience of the family. Cremation is through the Kevin M. Lesjack Funeral Home, 513 Main St., Forest City, Pa.

Contributions in Karen Blomain's memory can be made to the Karen Blomain Memorial Fund established at Marywood University, Scranton. Condolences can be sent online at

Published in Times Leader on Aug. 17, 2012