Pat Kress, a long-time Marion resident, passed away gently on May 3, 2018, at the age of 83. She was born Patricia Ann Harbison on Jan. 17, 1935, in Buffalo, N.Y. Pat was the first child of Paul Alexander Harbison and Gertrude Louise (Wood) Harbison. Pat had one younger sister, Margery Louise Harbison, born on Dec. 7, 1936, who passed away in 1943 at the age of six as a result of leukemia.
Pat moved with her parents from Buffalo to York, Pa., in the late 1930s. In 1941, they moved to Whitefish Bay, Wis. A year later, the family moved to Shorewood, Wis., where they would reside for many years. Pat attended and graduated from Shorewood High School in 1952. Pat graduated from Miami University in Ohio in 1956 with a B.A. in English. She was an active member of Sigma Kappa Sorority and wrote for the school newspaper. Following graduation, she lived in Columbus, Ohio, working as a technical editor for Western Electric.
On Sept. 1, 1962, Pat married Charles Edward Kress. The couple moved to Marion, Iowa, on Sept. 5 of that same year and remained residents there for life. Pat worked for the Marion Sentinel and then as community relations coordinator for Linn-Mar Community Schools. Pat used her exceptional writing talents to produce the district newsletter and countless bulletins, information guides and other communiques to grow the district. Pat was recognized along with her husband, Charlie, for their tireless support of the district and were named to the Linn-Mar Wall of Fame as LIONS Award recipients in 2006.
Pat was active in the community by serving on the boards of both the Friends of the Marion Library and the Friends of the Marion Parks, volunteering for both organizations. She also volunteered for the Community Health Free Clinic, Meals on Wheels, Freedom Festival and various local political campaigns. She also was a proud, long-time member of PEO. In addition, Pat and Charlie were long-time members of a local bridge club.
Pat enjoyed curling up with a good book (typically a crime novel), exercising at the Rockwell Collins Recreation Center, keeping in touch with her children and finding an excuse to meet up with friends. She also loved her daily glass of chardonnay and, most of all, her dogs (particularly, her beloved Boston terrier, Ricky!).
Pat was a highly regarded and loved member of the community. Her extraordinary warmth, infectious smile and wonderful sense of humor lit up a room and endeared her to all she met. She also was a terrific mother, raising and guiding three boys to success in life with love, comfort, resilience and earnestness. Simply put, Pat was a great and remarkable person. She will be dearly missed.
Pat is survived by her three sons, John, 55 (wife Beth); Jeff, 52 (wife Teresa); and Alan, 49, and her two granddaughters, Anna, 20, and Ashley, 15 (children of John and Beth).
She was preceded in death by her husband, Charlie.
The family will greet friends from 4 to 7 p.m. Thursday, May 10, at Murdoch Funeral Home & Cremation Service in Marion. Funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. Friday, May 11, at First United Methodist Church in Marion with the service conducted by Pastor Mike Morgan. A visitation will be available preceding the service starting at 9:30 a.m. A luncheon will be held immediately following the service at the church.
Please share a memory of Pat at www.murdochfuneralhome.com under obituaries.