BIG BAY, MI. - Kay Ann Harrington, age 71, a resident of Big Bay for over 20 years, and former Marquette resident, entered eternal life Tuesday, March 25, 2014, at her home.
Born April 29, 1942, in Marquette, Kay was raised in Marquette and was a 1960 graduate of the Bishop Baraga High School. Following graduation, she was employed as a secretary with the former Michigan Mutual.
On May 16, 1962, Kay married Jerry Harrington at St. Peter Cathedral and they moved to Kalamazoo for a brief time before returning to Marquette in 1965. Locally, Jerry began selling life insurance with MetLife and Kay as a secretary with the Peter White Insurance Agency for many years. For a few years, she worked as an appraiser in real estate before beginning an over 25 year career with Northern Michigan University. At Northern, she initially was employed as a staff person and then for a time as Interim Director of Continuing Education.
Efficient and well organized, Kay served in many capacities and in various departments throughout the years, offering secretarial support with added responsibilities. She assisted at the Jacobetti Skill Center with the Trades, the PEIF Department in recreational aspects, and in the Department of Military Science, from where she retired in 2005.
In the early 1990's, Kay and Jerry moved to Big Bay and she quickly fell in love with the natural environment and community. She immersed herself in volunteering at the Powell Township School in many areas including intergenerational programming, serving as chairman of the Powell Township School Board, and served the community on the Township Board of Review.
She enjoyed the social activities in the community, including bridge club and afternoons on the lake, relaxing with her lady friends on the pontoon. Gardening, travel, and spending time with the grandchildren were also favorite passions. Kay possessed a soft spot in her heart for animals, and enjoyed the critters who frequented her yard, and her canine companions, Daisy and Shadow.
A member of St. Mary Catholic Church, Kay used her love of knitting to establish a local Prayer Shawl Ministry at the parish, knitters who meet regularly to knit shawls for those seriously ill.
She also owned and operated her own insurance agency in Big Bay, The Harrington Insurance Agency, and was co-owner with husband, Jerry, of the former Harrington and Harrington Insurance Agency in Marquette.
A loving wife, mother, grandmother, and friend, Kay is survived by her husband of 49 years, Jerry; daughter, Susan (Jason) Neumeier of Escanaba; son, Jim (Molly Cotant) Harrington of Petoskey; her grandchildren, Luke, Ben, and Jacob Anthony, Annabelle, Irene, and Ulric Neumeier, and Miles Cotant Harrington; also numerous other relatives and friends.
The family will receive relatives and friends at St. Mary Catholic Church in Big Bay on Saturday, March 29, beginning at 11:30 am. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 1:30 pm Saturday afternoon with Rev. Msgr. Michael Steber as celebrant. Pallbearers will be Jason Neumeier, Luke, Ben, and Jacob Anthony. A reception will follow in the church fellowship hall.
In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred to Liberty Children's Art Project, C/O Powell Township School, P.O. Box 160, Big Bay, MI 49808 or UPAWS (Upper Peninsula Animal Welfare Shelter), P.O. Box 968, Marquette, MI 49855.
The Fassbender Funeral Home is serving the family, where condolences may be expressed online at fassbenderfuneral home.com.