Katharine Mary Allen

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August 18, 2012

Katharine Mary (Kai) Allen, 24, of Exeter, passed away suddenly in Argentina on Saturday, August 18, 2012.

Born on April 1, 1988 in Mt. Kisco, N.Y., she was a daughter of Anthony and Doreen (DePietro) Allen.

She attended Valhalla, New York, schools, graduating from high school in 2006. Katharine was a recipient of many accolades. She was also a member of the National Honor Society. Throughout her high school years, Katharine was a member of the Westchester Dreamcoats, a youth performance choir available for many charitable events.

Katharine attended Occidental College in Los Angeles, Calif. She graduated with honors in 2010, receiving her bachelor of arts degree in critical theory and social justice. Many of her professors described Katharine as a kind and loving person, and an outstanding scholar who dedicated her life to connecting personal and community well-being.

After graduation, Katharine moved to Valparaiso, Chile, where she studied abroad in 2009 through the SIT student exchange organization.

She continued to volunteer her time to the program orienting American exchange students to the Chilean culture and lifestyle.

They have dedicated this fall semester program and the student library in her memory. Katharine also worked tirelessly in Chile, advancing the rights of women and underprivileged people, as well as teaching English to individuals of different age groups.

Katharine was a Fulbright Award Recipient, attending University in Argentina for her master's degree, while also conducting research.

With a focus on community organizing, Katharine helped to provide a voice to all those who had trouble being heard. She was one of the creators of the Critical Theory and Social Justice Journal of Undergraduate Research at Occidental College.

The upcoming issue will be dedicated in her memory and the ongoing importance of her work. Her love of writing and passion for poetry has been a constant driving force in Katharine's life. She is the author of two volumes of poetry, as well as several magazine and newspaper publications.

When first meeting Katharine, many were touched by her kindness, radiant smile, trustworthiness and her ability to establish an immediate connection. She was thoughtful, compassionate and put tremendous energy into everything she did. Her constant willingness to help those in need demonstrated her selfless nature. Katharine was an extremely humble person whom we loved dearly. We are so proud to be her parents.

She will be sadly missed by her parents, Doreen and Tony; younger sister, Elizabeth; maternal grandmother, Jean (Bernardi) DePietro; aunts, uncles, cousins, colleagues and countless friends, whom she loved all so dearly.

She was preceded in death by her maternal grandfather, Alfonso DePietro; paternal grandparents, Joshua and Florence Allen.

Memorial services will be held at Recupero Funeral Home, 406 Susquehanna Ave., West Pittston, Friday from 6 to 9 p.m. A Celebration of Life Mass will be held at St. Anthony's Church, Memorial Street, Exeter, on Saturday at 9:30 a.m. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Tony Allen Family.

Published in Times Leader on Sept. 26, 2012