Karen Short
Karen "Lue" Short

Karen "Lue" Short of North Manchester, formerly of Noblesville and West Lafayette, Indiana, passed away on March 6, 2014 after a long illness with pulmonary fibrosis. Lue spent her life as a nonconformist, filled with humor and adventure. She died at home with her parrot by her side, listening to Ricky Martin sing "Living La Vida Loca." She was preceded in death by her adoptive parents, George and Ruby Short of Edgewater, FL. Also preceding her demise were Isabell, her beloved bread truck that was a converted living space, and her parrots Tootsie, Hamlet and Quinto.

Karen lived as a child in West Virginia, moved to Noblesville in the 1950's and graduated from Noblesville HS. She lived most of her adult life in West Lafayette, Indiana. She was happily divorced from at least two men, the first being Gerald "Ray" Wiegand of Monon, IN. He is also happily divorced. Karen is survived by her sister, Carol Short and her favorite daughter, Tova Wiegand-Green (Richard) of North Manchester and 4 grandchildren: Stephanie (Doug) Bragg of Markle, IN; Elaina (Josh) Johns-Wolfe of Fort Wayne, IN; Will Green and Ben Green of North Manchester, and a great-grandchild, Charlotte Bragg of Markle. Karen attended Sons of Abraham in Lafayette.

Karen traveled the highways, hitch hiking, loved CA, NV, NY, and VA; never enjoyed humidity of FL, but went there anyway. She attended both IU and Purdue, accumulating over 200 combined credits. Karen was an avid IU fan, her favorite daughter was a Hoosier by birth, but a Boilermaker by the Grace of God. She spoke Hebrew, Portuguese and Spanish, and she had studied French, Romanian, Russian and Danish. Karen worked as a tutor for men's PU basketball team members, florist, health aide at Heritage Healthcare and Soldier's Home in West Lafayette, and as a hot dog vendor in West Lafayette at the Village. She was known as the "Hot Dog Lady" by a generation of Purdue students that frequented the bars of the Village. She wore crazy-wacky hats every night she worked. Karen was a girl scout, of the worst kind, you know, that one that has something in the backpack for EVERY eventuality. She enjoyed buying second-hand things at Goodwill, dumpster diving in May after PU let out, camping (anywhere), not living in a house with a foundation (see Isabell above), and coming and going as she pleased. She collected books and puzzles and HATS. And she required all scheduled activities to be around the Jeopardy schedule - tried never to miss an episode. She also listened to the Prairie Home Companion, religiously. In fact her favorite vacation of all time was when she went to Lake Wobegon and learned how to make Norwegian banana bread for the Lutheran bake sale. Her happiest and fondest memories are of summer camp, especially the year her parents forgot to come get her for an extra week. If you wish to honor this experience, please see the Donate link. She wants her gold teeth back from the dentist that yanked them - those were HER teeth to keep. Her last wish is to have the song "Another One Bites the Dust" played at her memorial. If you have no cash to donate, Karen would like you to consider visiting your local farmer's market, hiking a local park, or making some homemade chicken noodle soup next time your neighbor is sick, or as a last resort, pay your next restaurant bill with all one-dollar bills, just to make them wonder how you got them.

A Memorial Picnic and Celebration of Karen's life will be held at Happy Hollow Park in West Lafayette, Indiana (1301 Happy Hollow Rd) on May 18th, from 1PM-5PM in Pavilion #4. Hot dogs will be served until we run out! Memorials can be made to sponsor a summer camper at http://www.brethrenretreat.org.


Published by Journal & Courier from Apr. 2 to Apr. 3, 2014.
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37 Entries
Your obit made me smile. Even in your passing you are bringing joy. I wish I would have met you. We could have been buds, or at least I could have taught you about your love for IU. Boiler Up! Rest In Peace Lue.
Sheila Robbins Campbell
September 21, 2021
I know that this is years later but in reading this I can tell the impact she had on people and her joy and personality had to be infectious. I'm sure she's not missing from the memory of those who knew her personally and she seemed like someone who was the star in the room.

Thanks for sharing your warm memories with us. Grief doesn't completely go away but we learn to cope. My prayers and thoughts are wIth your family and I hope you all will continue to endure with the peace of God.
November 8, 2018
What a beautiful free spirit. May she RIP in paradise. God be with the family in their time of need. Beautifully written obituary. Thank you for sharing.
Nikki Ortega
May 10, 2018
This woman sounds like she brought the party with her! It's so unfortunate that she's no longer here, but how great it would be to meet her in Paradise. My condolences to your family for losing such an lively person.
D Rivers
September 12, 2015
What a fantastic sense of humor! That is a good example for all of us and quite an inspiration.
February 17, 2015
I am amazed; this could be my twin. Surely, she is being missed by many.
December 6, 2014
As the days and weeks pass, and as you return to life's routine, may you continue to feel comforted by the love and support of family and friends.
C C (Psalms 23)
August 30, 2014
What a fantastic and complete life! Ms. Short will definitely be missed by all who knew her! Condolences to her family.
Westerfeld Family
May 1, 2014
"Lue" is Karen's middle name and the name that she told me she preferred to be called.
Mindy Rothbard
April 9, 2014
Lue was a good friend to me in college and afterwards. She remains an important figure in my life. She was perhaps the first of many intelligent, non-conformist and outrageous friends I've had over the years (astrology chart says that I am attracted to unusual people). Lue's sense of humor was phenomenal and helped her to get through this life sane.
April 9, 2014
I knew Karen, she was something!!! kind to every one .A special friend of my sister Wanda Bloyd . prayers sister until we meet on the other side.Wilma Pilotte
April 7, 2014
Sounds like a wonderful woman. Glad she got to live her life on her own terms. An inspiration for all of us. God Bless Karen and her family.
April 7, 2014
RIP Karen. If everyone lived like you did the world would be a better, happier place.
Elizabeth Gray
April 7, 2014
My years at Purdue would have never been the same! Loved her and her tasty dogs!
April 5, 2014
Karen, Glad you lived your life like you wanted. She was so much fun. RIP
Arlene Bellamy
April 5, 2014
Thank you, everyone! My mom said she didn't want an obit if it was going to be sad and emotional. So this is how she lived until the day she died. Please visit the legacy link at the bottom of the obit to see pictures and read more. Gonna lay down my burden, and See you down by the riverside, Mom.
April 4, 2014
Sorry that I didn't know her,she sounded like a pretty wonderful person,fun loving an smart.I imagine she will be sadly missed by all her family & friends.May God Bless Her an May she REST IN PEACE. What a sese of humor she had.
JoAnn Turner
April 4, 2014
I read the obits and then had my sister read hers!! I would have love to have known her!! God Bless her and her family!!
Lori Tague
April 4, 2014
Sounds like those who knew her were truly blessed by having such s "wacky" friend whose life was indeed inspirational! She'll be so in Heaven as well, I'm sure. Whoever wrote the obit did an incredible, authentic piece!
Shermie Schafer
April 4, 2014
I am sorry I didn't know Karen because I would have found her really refreshing.
Theresa Byrd
April 4, 2014
Although I didn't know Karen, I bet she was far happier than most of all Americans. May she continue to be colorful in heaven.
April 4, 2014
She sounded like an amazing,fun spirited. Person. Keep the memories alive! God bless!
Karla Banes
April 4, 2014
I didn't know Karen but am sure she set a record for people not knowing her and commenting. She sounds like she was a free spirit and may you soar into your next life. To her survivors, don't grieve this adventurous woman but continue to love what she believed in. There is so little of that in this day and age. Blessings
Sharon Oberlie Neal
April 3, 2014
Did not know her, but sure as hell wish I did. Nice memorial, family. I hope mine knows me half that well ??
April 3, 2014
Karen was one of the best friends I've ever had. One of a kind. We had known each other from first grade on. You can run, skip and jump now. God's spend, dear heart.
Connie Odom
April 3, 2014
I didn't know Karen either, but she sounds like she was a really neat person! With deepest sympathy
Cheryl Johnson
April 3, 2014
So happy to of had the chance to meet such an interesting lady!
Melissa Ernst
April 3, 2014
Another unmet admirer from afar. Karen: I know you helped make everything around you that much better. Boogie down in peace.
Andy S
April 3, 2014
Never knew Karen, but boy I wish I had! My sympathies to who that knew her and I am sure will miss her. Sounds like a great person.
April 3, 2014
I did not personally know Karen, but her spirit made my day. Fly free Karen :)
Brittany Odle
April 3, 2014
Did not know Karen but sounds like someone most of us would love to have as a friend. In today's world, it is so refreshing to hear of someone having such a free spirit. RIP Karen!
Lynn Skerritt
April 3, 2014
Didn't know Karen, but she sounds like one adventurous lady, of which I admire. Great memorial. Hugs to all those that knew and loved her. (hugs)
Shanna Faulkner
April 3, 2014
Karen was a good friend to me while we were growing up. I always wanted to have a piece of her free spirit! RIP, Karen!!
Sue Melling Bennett
April 3, 2014
April 3, 2014
Great tribute. She was extremely interesting. Cheers to her for living her life the way she enjoyed. Just might have to do some dumpster diving in her honor. We once made plans to and they fell through. Sorry for you and your family's loss.
Peggy Johns
April 2, 2014
WOW!! I didn't know Karen but wished I did. She sounded like a fabulous lady!!
April 2, 2014
I am very sorry about your loss Tova. May god be with you.
Tim Bessler
April 2, 2014
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