CHARLESTON, IL – Kathleen Gae Armstrong, 65, passed away from gastric cancer on March 16, 2020 in Charleston, Illinois. Kathy was born April 27, 1954 in Sacramento, California, to Richard Linder Wood and Dorothy Alice (DeHaan) Wood. The family moved to St. Louis, Missouri, before Kathy was two so she always considered St. Louis her hometown. She graduated from Kirkwood High School in Kirkwood, Missouri, in 1972 and earned a Bachelors degree in Journalism with an emphasis in magazine editing from the University of Missouri at Columbia in December 1975.
Kathy married Judson Mark Armstrong on March 31, 1979 at Webster Groves Christian Church in St. Louis, Missouri. She worked writing and editing business publications and in the fields of public relations and advertising for 15 years.
In 1990, Jud and Kathy welcomed their daughter, Karen Christine. Jud’s job brought the family to Charleston, Illinois in 1992 and son, Jonathan Mark completed their family in 1996. After Karen was born Kathy decided to stay home as a fulltime mom but that didn’t stop Kathy’s desire to find an outlet for her talents and her desire to be involved in the community. When Karen began school, Kathy began volunteering in her children’s classrooms and in the school libraries, an activity she enjoyed for 12 years. She was a member of the Charleston Joint PTA Board for five years, serving two years as president. She also worked as a substitute teacher in the CUSD1 libraries. Her other community activities included membership in the Charleston-Mattoon Branch of AAUW, serving two years as president of the local branch and one year as AAUW-IL, Inc. State Program VP. Kathy was a member of the Friends of the Public Library, serving two years as president; and, volunteered organizing the library’s book sale room. As part of her love for learning, Kathy helped AAUW and SACIS by writing trivia questions for their trivia fund raising events.
Kathy loved live theater, old movies, a good book, going on adventures, learning something new every day, and quality time with family and friends.
Kathy was preceded in death by her parents, Richard and Dorothy Wood. She is survived by her loving husband of nearly 41 years, Jud, her two children, Karen and Jonathan, and her two older brothers; Craig D. Wood (Donna) and niece Laura A. Wood of St. Louis, Missouri, and Richard L. Wood, Jr. (Billie) and nephew Brendan N. Wood, of Fairfield, California.
A celebration of Kathy’s life will be held on a future date. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Charleston Carnegie Public Library, The Charleston Community Theater, or the organization of the donor’s choice. Gifts may be mailed in care of Adams Funeral Chapel, 2330 Shawnee Drive, Charleston, Illinois 61920.
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