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Kathleen Novak

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Kathleen Novak Obituary
Kathleen Wilderson Novak

April 16th, 1944 - June 25th, 2014

Kathleen passed from this life on June 25th, at her home in Bethesda, MD, from leiomyosarcoma. A native of San Francisco, Kathleen was the daughter of Edward and Frances Wilderson. She graduated from St. Thomas the Apostle Elementary, Star of the Sea High School, San Jose State University, and from Smith College, where she received her MSW, and Ph.D.
Kathleen served in the Peace Corps, in the Dominican Republic, where she met her husband of 44 years, John Novak. They settled on the East Coast, where they raised their daughter Laura, enjoying family life, sailing, traveling, and pursuing their professional goals. Kathleen had a rewarding career as a psychotherapist, and later, in the field of Global Health, as a project manager, overseeing programs in Africa, Central and South America.

Kathleen is survived by her husband, John Novak, daughter Laura Burke (Patrick), sister Ann Green (David), brother Raymond Wilderson, niece Katie Green, and by the many dear friends she made throughout her lifetime. She is preceded in death by her brother, Edward Wilderson.

Kathleen will be remembered by all of us who knew and loved her as a positive force in our lives. She had a generous heart, an amazing spirit, and a wonderful sense of humor. "Carpe Diem" (Seize the Day), was her motto and her way of life. Kathleen, we love you, and you will be in our hearts forever.

A Memorial Mass will be held on Friday, July 25th, at 11AM, at St. Thomas the Apostle Church, 3835 Balboa St. S.F. In memory of Kathleen, donations may be made to Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, or to the .

Published in San Francisco Chronicle on July 20, 2014
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