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Kathryn Sharp

April 3, 1938 October 13, 2018
Kathryn Sharp
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Obituary for Kathryn Sharp

Kathryn Ann Sharp (Phillips/Turner)

After 80 years of living life to it's fullest, Kathryn Ann Sharp departed this world peacefully on the beautiful fall morning of October 13, 2018, following a courageous battle with cancer. She is survived by the love-off-her-life Wayne Bass, brother Grier Phillips, daughter Shelley (Patrick) and son Michael Sharp, granddaughter Oceana Jenkins, her beloved Bass sons Mike (Erin) and Darren, and grandchildren Alex, Peyton, Chloe, great-grandson Wyatt Bass, and niece and nephew, Lauren and Matt Turner.
Born in 1938 in Newberg, Oregon, Kay was the youngest child of Evelyn Thurber and Lauren Turner. She graduated high school in 1956 from Lewis and Clark in Spokane where she was a member of the Kappa Chi Club. A proud Bulldog, Kay graduated Summa Cum Laude from Gonzaga University at 55- years-young with a Bachelor's Degree in Special Education. Known for her intelligence and unwavering work ethic, Kay's professional career began in the early space program as the administrative secretary for Dr. Joseph Denney, inventor of the Tetrahedral Research Satellite. At Space Technology Laboratories, she operated the TWX for NASA during the lunar probes and was engaged in the Thor, Atlas, Titan and Minuteman missile research. In Spokane, Kay's career included positions at New Horizon Care Center, Wagstaff, Inc., and 9-years at ASC Machine Tools, where she was a ground-breaker for women in management. She retired in 2008 as office manager for Contract Resource Group.
Kay's great love of travel and adventure were the perfect fit when she reunited with Wayne, her high school sweetheart. Together, they spent 32 years traversing the world, visiting many countries, looking for exciting and off-the-map experiences. When she was 70, Kay overcame her fear of heights, and she and Wayne bungee jumped off of New Zealand's Kawarau Bridge, where the sport was born. They have kayaked many of the world's oceans and rivers, mountain-biked the Atacama Desert in Chile, hiked the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, and circumnavigated Ayers Rock in Australia. Kay's itinerary was growing smaller, but she and Wayne still had bucket list trips to make and were planning an African safari in April 2019.

Kay volunteered for a variety of community organizations and always felt a strong pull to help under-served residents. For over 40 years, she was an outspoken advocate for those fighting mental illness and was active in NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness), both locally and nationally. Kay's moto was "Make new friends, but keep the old. One is silver and the other gold." From her early days in California and Utah, to her future home with Wayne in Arizona, she connected over travels, golf, food, and activities in nature. For those who called her friend, Kay's bright spirit, optimism, and determination will be sorely missed.

In the days before she passed, Kay was surrounded in love by family and friends. Per Kathryn's wishes, no funeral service will be held. She departed peacefully at Hospice of Spokane, where, en lieu of flowers, donations are gratefully accepted in her name at P.O. Box 2215, Spokane, WA, 99210.

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