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Catherine Navitsky


1930 - 2020
Catherine Navitsky Obituary

Catherine "Kitty" (Shrader) Navitsky, 90, of Drexel Hill and formerly of Shenandoah, passed away peacefully surrounded by her family Friday, Oct. 23.

Kitty was born Feb. 16, 1930. The youngest of 10, she was a daughter of John and Catherine Schrader and last of her immediate family. Or as she would say, "I'm the last of the Mohicans!" Siblings Margaret, Roy, Robert, John and Harold died in Kitty's youth. Her sisters, Myrtle, Lina, Nellie and Mae were our cherished aunts and our mom's lifelong friends.

Music filled Kitty's life. She was the eternal Bobby Soxer, and Frank Sinatra was often heard crooning from wherever she happened to be.

Kitty was the beloved wife of "Our Daddy," Walter D. Navitsky. They met at a Valentine's Dance in 1948 and were married for 39 years until his death in 1988. She was his "Penelope"; to her, he was "Scarmooch." Hardly a day passed in the 32 years since he's been gone that she didn't mention his name. "Stardust" was their song and whenever it played, it was family protocol to stop what we were doing, look up at the sky and acknowledge "Our Daddy."

Kitty was a proud graduate of the J.W. Cooper High School, Class of 1948, and a member of the glee club, dramatics club and drill team. She never had a taste for sports, be it on TV or one of her kids' or grandkids' games. However, she would hold a sleeping baby for hours, had endless enthusiasm to read to a toddler or play a board game with a child. Miss America was Kitty's Super Bowl, and we were all polled the week leading up to the big event on who we had favored to win. Kitty was a comedian's dream. A simple knock-knock joke would elicit a genuine belly laugh. She loved mischief and shenanigans and was sentimental and patriotic.

Our mom loved to travel and was the best sidekick, having equal enthusiasm for a cross country road trip or a just a day at the beach. Kitty visited every one of the 48 contiguous states and had the refrigerator magnets as proof. She danced on stage with Chuck Berry, gave Harry Connick Jr. a candy bar and kissed Bill Murray on her 75th birthday on a train to New York.

Our mom was a private person and never wanted anyone to know her business. However, she loved when any of us got good publicity in the local newspaper and loved the pageantry of a parade. With that in mind, we believe it was kismet that the mayor of her hometown of Shenandoah was doubling as the funeral home driver the day she died. Only fitting that the mayor escorted her on her final 90-mile journey home.

Kitty is survived by children, Kathleen and Carson Long, Holly and Dennis Tempest, Wally Navitsky, Melissa Navitsky and Mimi McCarthy. She was Mom Mom to Jesse and Michelle Chiscavage, Tony and Ashley Usalis, Amy and Greg Vagelatos, Hilary and Will O'Keefe, Nathan Navitsky, Curtis Navitsky and Timmy Tempest; Mom Mom Sugar to Catherine, Eliza, Darla and John McCarthy. Her great-grands are Lily Chiscavage, Ty, Boone and Emma Usalis; she is also survived by cousins, nieces and nephews.

Her first and eldest grandson, Albert Chiscavage, sadly passed away in 2017.

Graveside services will take place at 11 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 29, in the Odd Fellows Cemetery, Shenandoah Heights, and will be officiated by Pastor Jack Murray. Oravitz Home for Funerals Inc., Shenandoah, are entrusted with the arrangements. Due to COVID-19, all social distancing guidelines and mask requirements will be followed. To offer condolences, please visit www.oravitzhomeforfunerals.com.


Published in Republican & Herald on Oct. 27, 2020
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