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Kathleen Briggs

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Kathleen Briggs Obituary
Kathleen Burwell Briggs, 83

Kathleen (Kay) Burwell Briggs, 83, of West Lafayette passed away Thursday, March 21, 2013 at IU Arnett Hospital following a short battle with leukemia.

The daughter of James Benton and Hazle O. (Degner) Burwell was born in Lafayette IN in July 1929. She is survived by her husband of 65 years William (Bill) P. Briggs; daughters, Rebecca Brody and Hazel Briggs of West Lafayette; sons, William (Buzz) and wife Sandy Briggs of Lafayette, Jim Briggs of Wallkill, NY, and Peter and wife Pat Briggs of Bloomington, IN; grandchildren, Jack Brody, Carey, Curtis, Peter and Marshall Briggs, Brook Olson, and Paula Ewert; great-grandchildren, Mercedes and Jennika Olson and Ali Acosta; a sister, Luann Shirley of Ann Arbor, Michigan; a brother William Burwell of Olsmtead Falls, OH. She was preceded in death by her brothers James W. and Calvin C. Burwell.

Kathleen lived in this area most of her life, first on Owen Street and then during the war years on a small farm which is now in the center of West Lafayette. She attended Highland Elementary and Klondike High School, graduating in 1947.

Kathleen met her husband-to-be Bill in a GI chow line at the Purdue Memorial Union when she said to him, "No seconds, soldier!" They corresponded during the war, married in December 1947 and moved to Montreal where Bill attended McGill University. After graduation they moved to the Lafayette area, settling first on North Chauncey in the mid-50's, then moving to the Northwestern Heights neighborhood in 2004.

While in Canada the young couple was contacted by Jehovah's Witnesses who studied the Bible with them. Kathleen was baptized in 1958 and by the late 60's was working full-time in Bible education work in the community. Eventually she came to have an international family of spiritual children.

Kay loved primitive camping, backpacking, canoeing in the boundary waters, and the U P of Michigan. In later years, she found pleasure in gardening and watching children as well as birds out of her picture window.

Her family is looking forward to seeing her again in the future when God's will is 'done on earth as it is in heaven.'

The family is planning a memorial service on April 20th. Please visit for service details and to light a Candle of Hope in remembrance of Kay.

Published in the Journal & Courier from Mar. 23 to Mar. 24, 2013
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