Karen Ilene Burt

Born: 12/25/1940 Passed:

Karen Ilene (Curtis) Burt claimed her final reward early the morning of 11 December 2019 at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center in Cleveland, Ohio, after a brief hospitalization. A long-time resident of Cleveland, Karen was born 25 December 1940 in Warren, Pennsylvania. She was preceded in death by her Mother, Audrey (Snyder) Curtis, and Father, Donald Leroy Curtis. Ms. Burt is survived by a younger sister, Karlene Fryxell of Blacksburg, Virginia, two nephews, Todd Fitch of Blacksburg, and Graham Sherwood of Seattle, Washington, grand-niece Mia and grand-nephew Wesley Sherwood of Seattle, and two grand-nieces, Sarah and Emily Fitch of Blacksburg.

After graduating from Allegheny College in Meadville, Pennsylvania in 1962 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry, Karen moved to Cleveland, Ohio to begin an exciting life in the city that became her adopted home. She continued her education, earning a Master of Science degree in Library Science from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio in 1967. Her career included positions at the Harshaw Chemical Company, Music Cataloger at the Cleveland Institute of Music, and several Librarian positions at the Case Western Reserve University including her work with the school’s rare books, procurement, and medical library.

A professional Librarian and avid historian, Karen read voraciously and collected books on many topics including global politics, knitting and needlepoint, and travel. Most prominently her library and hand-written notes testified to Karen’s passionate quest to enrich and share her Christian faith. Karen served as Church Librarian at her beloved Church of the Covenant in Cleveland, Ohio even until the time of her passing. Karen cherished her relationship with God and her church family.

Karen enjoyed driving, and owned Ford Mustangs exclusively for decades beginning with a flashy red 1965 Mustang convertible, a 1978 Mustang II, and a 1985 Mustang GT. Her hobbies included knitting, needlepoint, and genealogy. While later in life Karen mostly enjoyed classical music and supported the Cleveland Orchestra, Karen and her late husband “Jerry” Burt drove to the original Woodstock music festival in 1969. Karen spent many weeks and weekends visiting and fishing with her father near the end of his life. They enjoyed many special times during those years.

Friends wishing to celebrate Karen’s life may gather at 1:30 pm on Friday, 13 December 2019 at Church of the Covenant, 11205 Euclid Ave, Cleveland, OH 44106. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the church.


1 Tribute to Karen Ilene Burt

  1. Portia Miles Smith says:

    Karen was not only a dear friend but a real renaissance woman who not only was proficient at all the things mentioned in her obituary but a super sports fan, especially baseball, and would “refresh” me on the rules more than once. Come next week, I’ll especially miss getting her email giving me her take on The Resident and an update on Sunday’s service. I feel very privileged to have known her.

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