Katherine (Kitty) Riley-James 1953-2015
Katherine Louise [Riley] James 1953 – 2015
On April 16, 2015, Kitty [Riley] James chose to end her 55-year battle with Type I Diabetes at her home in Nashville, TN. She was 62.
Kitty was born in Manchester, NH, to Paul Jordan and Frances Louise [Hartnett] Riley. Growing up in Manchester, the oldest of three girls, she was a participant of Blessed Sacrament, St. Anne’s, and later St. Joseph Cathedral. In her adult life, she was a decades-long follower of the teachings of the Church of Scientology, working for the organization for many years before retiring in 2012.
She attended Manchester schools [Blessed Sacrament School, McDonald School, Immaculata High School] before graduating from Manchester Central High School in 1971. She later attended Juliet Gibson School in Boston,MA, John F. Kennedy College in Wahoo, NE, and Northeast Missouri State University in Kirksville, MO. For much of her adult life, she worked in the fields of legal and church administration.
She is predeceased by both parents, and is the widow of Fred James formerly of Boston MA. She is survived by her husband, Mike Walimaa of Nashville, TN; son Benjamin Moses, his wife Emily and their children Sylvia and Ari, of Charlottesville, VA; son Eddie Semrad of Dallas, TX; sister Christine Riley and her husband Michael Koza of Asheville, NC; her sister Karen Godzyk and her husband, Chuck of Tucson AZ, and their children Mark, Chris and Beth.
From her very early years, Kitty was known for her beautiful singing voice, her quick and contagious laugh, and her deep and abiding appreciation for very bad puns.
Kitty has requested that there be no formal memorial services. She has donated her body to scientific research
in Nashville, TN. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Pediatric Research Fund of the Joslin Diabetes Clinic in Boston, MA.
Follow this link -- Joslin Clinic -- or mail check to Joslin Clinic, One Joslin Place, Suite 745, Boston, MA 02215.
If you would like the family's address to send a note you can request it from Lynette.
Above is what I sent to the Union Leader. Kitty approved it minutes before she fell asleep for the last time. How many of us get to do that?
Thanks for getting this information to those you think would want to know at JFK.
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Hi JFK alumni group......here is the information that Kitty's sister Christine shared with me in the Obituary of Kitty's life. Not sure how to post to the JFK alumni page on "remembrances." I actually am locked out of getting on...can someone direct me as to how to get back onto the site?
If anyone in the Wahoo area knows who the musical director of the New Generation group was please share with him...I have forgotten his name and any of the others in the New Generation who knew Kitty. We had an awesome group of singers back then with the group! and in the theater group with Mrs. Dillow.
Please keep Kitty in your prayers and also her siblings and family as they grieve for the loss of their loved one. Please share with others that you know from the college during the time we were students there 1971-1974. Christine also attended JFK but only for a short time so we have renewed old friendships.
Rich sends his best to everyone as well from here in Upstate NY.
Debbie and Rich