Katharine A. “Kay” Lembright, R.N., 92, of Columbia City, died Saturday, March 26, 2011 at The Oaks Nursing facility, where she had been a resident for two weeks. She was born Aug. 10, 1918 to Arthur and Eva Marie (Koons) Lembright, Sr., in Alliance, Stark Co., Ohio.
She graduated with the Class of 1936 from Alliance High School. She graduated from Elizabeth Steel Magee Hospital School of Nursing in Pittsburgh, Pa. During World War II, Miss Lembright began her professional career in East Pittsburgh, Pa., where she was an industrial nurse for six years with Westinghouse. From there, she became an Industrial Nursing Consultant for the state of Pennsylvania. Six years later she became an assistant executive secretary for the American Nurses Association and six years after that, she was named the nursing director in the national offices of the American Heart Association. She served in this position for 21 years. Upon her retirement in 1981, she moved to Whitley County to be near her brother and sister-in-law.
Her memberships included the Columbia City United Methodist Church; American Nurses’ Association; American Heart Association; American Cancer Society and she was on its board of directors; vice-president, Parliamentary Law and Literary Club; Order of Eastern Star 68; Passages, Inc. She received the Distinguished Alumni Award of Alliance High School. The American Heart Association has established an annual Nursing Research Award in Miss Lembright’s name. She had been the Mayor’s Representative on the Area 3 Council on Aging and was on its Board of Directors and was also the liaison representative to the Whitley County Council on Aging. She was known among children and their parents as “Smiley” the clown. As this character, she entertained at many social functions, spreading cheer and goodwill.
She is survived by a niece, Linda Turley of Florida; a nephew, Arthur “Skip” Lembright III of New York; a great nephew, Joseph Turley of Florida; two great nieces, Christena Turley-Bailey of Florida, and Kaitlyn Lembright of New York; her surrogate family, Grace and Bob Lotter of Columbia City and their children, Gwenn Lotter of New York and Brian (Jaime) Lotter of Maryland.
She was preceded in death by her mother and father, brother, Arthur Lembright and sister, Marguerite Marshall.
At Miss Lembright’s request, there will be no visitation or memorial service. Burial will be at Alliance City Cemetery. Memorial bequests may be made to the Whitley County Humane Society, American Heart Association, American Cancer Society or Columbia City United Methodist Church.
To sign the guest register or send the family a condolence, visit www.demoneygrimes.com . Arrangements have been entrusted to DeMoney-Grimes Countryside Park Funeral Home, Columbia City.