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“She has been in the community for this long, and she has built up great relationships with the community, local businesses and members, so it was just overwhelming to get the response from the members,” she said. “Everybody just loved Karen. If you knew Karen, you were to love Karen.”
This year, Karen died eight days before the shopping day.
Her husband of 42 years, Jerry Owens, tested positive for COVID-19 on Nov. 10 and was admitted to the Schneck Medical Center intensive care unit Nov. 14. Karen got sick and passed out Nov. 13 and went to the hospital two days later.
Turner said Karen was put on a ventilator Nov. 23, and Jerry also was on a ventilator in the next ICU room. Jerry is slowly progressing after coming off of the ventilator Dec. 14.
A private family funeral service for Karen was Dec. 12, and a celebration of life service will be held later.
Contributed by The Tribune, Jackson County
Provided Kim Blanchar
Name: Kim Blanchar
Died: April 16
Kim Blanchar loved life aggressively. She loved language, she loved people, she loved to laugh. Giving life to others put breath in her lungs.
Were it not for her bright mind, she might’ve been in a vegetative state years ago. That’s what multiple sclerosis, a disease the affects the brain and spinal cord, does. But as her body gave way over the years, her all-consuming curiosity kept her going.
The former Brebeuf Jesuit teacher died peacefully of the coronavirus at IU West Hospital in Avon on April 16 at the age of 68.
Blanchar was a cheerleader at Jefferson High School in Lafayette, where she graduated in 1969. And there might not be a more apt way to describe how she lived her life.
“She had that contagious kind of personality,” said Linda Long, who knew Blanchar since childhood. “When you were around her, she lit up a room.”