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In Loving Memory

Katherine Ann "Kay" Russo

September 5, 1964 – September 8, 2021

Katherine Ann “Kay" Russo died on September 8, 2021 at the age of 57.

God gave us a special gift of a baby girl with Down Syndrome on September 5, 1964.  This little girl touched our lives in amazing ways and was an incredible blessing to our whole family.  She grew up to be an independent, determined, and fun-loving person who knew exactly what she wanted to do and did it in her own way.

At Pilgrim Elementary School in Houston, she was taught to read at the age of 12.  She kept that ability to read throughout her life.  After moving to Friendswood with her parents in 1983, she attended Friendswood schools.

Kay loved the color purple, country music, George Strait, JJ Watt, The Brady Bunch, Gilligan’s Island, every single Disney movie ever made, dances with her friends, playing the air drums, giggling, and hamburgers.  She would excitedly tell a story or sing a song to anyone who would listen. Without a doubt, time at the bay home was always a favorite event with all her cousins, aunts, and uncles.  She loved to tease and joke with everyone.  She delighted in every single holiday and found joy in the simplest pleasures of life.

Kay eagerly anticipated every single Monday evening – Special Friends night!  She loved the friends she made during her years at Special Friends.  In addition, Kay enjoyed spending time at her DayHab, Ability Beyond Disability.  She looked forward to every single outing, especially going out to eat.  She made great friends and dearly loved all her teachers there. 

A joyous part of her life was living with Brenda, Dennis and Shyanne for the last 4 years.  She truly found a second family and absolutely adored them, and they adored her.  She and Dennis teased each other relentlessly, and she loved Brenda like her own mother.  Shyanne was both her best friend and sister.  Kay loved riding in the golf cart with Shyanne and having girls’ shopping days.  The Harkins family are angels on earth for the way they loved and cared for Kay, and we will always be grateful for them.

Kay was preceded in death by her father, Joseph Angelo Russo.  She is survived by her mother, Elva Jean Russo, her sisters Mattia Maldonado and husband Ed, Susan Grygier and husband Mike, and Carolyn Russo.  She is also survived by her aunt, Carolyn Reilly; nieces and nephews Anthony Maldonado and wife Brittany, Thomas Maldonado, Charlie Maldonado, Joseph Grygier, Emily Grygier, Benjamin Grygier, Anna Grygier, Abbey Langan, Avery Langan; Brenda and Dennis Harkins, Shyanne Brown, and many beloved cousins.

Visitation will be held on Thursday, September 16, 2021, from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. at Jeter Funeral Home, 311 N. Friendswood Dr., Friendswood, TX 77546.  A Rosary will begin at 7:00 p.m.

A Funeral Mass will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, September 17, 2021 at Mary Queen Catholic Church, 606 Cedarwood Dr., Friendswood, TX 77546, Rev. Wayne Wilkerson officiating.  A procession will follow to Forest Park Lawndale Cemetery, 6900 Lawndale St., Houston, TX 77023.       

In lieu of flowers, donations in Kay’s memory may be made to either:                                                 

Houston Coalition for Life, 2925 T C Jester, #5, Houston, TX 77018, www.houstoncoalition.com or Texas Right to Life, 4500 Bissonnet, #305, Bellaire, TX 77401, www.texasrighttolife.com

Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.  We know Kay is in His arms.

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4 thoughts on “Katherine Ann "Kay" Russo”

  1. Terry Reyes, Mary Guerrero, Amy Offutt, Ester Reyes

    Kay was such a pleasure to be around! She was loved by many and she had such a good heart! I have no doubt she is in the arms of our Savior Jesus Christ. My prayers go out for all who are mourning, but our joy will be so good when we see her again in heaven!

  2. Aww I loved our Kay. She will be missed. So many times she has made me giggle. She didn't like frogs.She loved her Brenda and Shyanne. Getting her hamburgers on Wednesday. Love you Kay your with your heavenly family now. Run through those streets of gold.

  3. My dear Susan, what a beautiful obituary for a beautiful child of God. Having grown up with a younger Down Syndrome sister, I feel like I am reading a very special biography of my Rosemary. Kay was blessed to have been born into such a loving family. You and your family were blessed to have had her in your lives, as well. I have always felt that the Lord gives us these children so that we may work our way to heaven while loving them and caring for them in a special way. God bless all of you! Rebecca Corlett

  4. Kay will defiantly be missed by everyone she ever met. She was a light in a world of darkness, always full of joy and love no matter who you were. The world would be a lot better place if more of us had the outlook on life as Kay. May her smile shine down on us from the heavens and may she watch over the ones that need it. Fly high sweet angel.

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311 N. Friendswood Dr.
Friendswood, Texas 77546


311 N. Friendswood Dr.
Friendswood, Texas 77546

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