North Hunterdon High School graduate, college student and beloved friend Kathryn Rose Berger left a heartbreakingly touching message in her diary shared after her June 1 death from brain cancer at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia at age 20.
Born in New Brunswick, Kathryn grew up in Bethlehem Township and participated in school theater and choral groups, her obituary says.
Kathryn was known for her “flawless” comedic humor and timing, especially when she played the headmaster in her school’s production of Grease.
Kathryn was passionate about helping people with disabilities and participated in the Unified Bowling club, the Special Olympics and Girl Scouts, her obituary says.
She then continued her education by studying Communications at The College of New Jersey, where she was a member of the Alpha Phi Omega service fraternity, Best Buddies and Campus Ministry.
Meanwhile, Kathryn had become known for her endless positivity and her ability to find a silver lining in any situation — even as she battled her illness through countless trips to the Philadelphia Children’s Hospital.
“From her experiences in the hospital, she always wanted to be a source of positivity and light for everyone she met,” reads her obituary.
A quote from Kathryn’s journal and shared on her obituary reflects what an endless source of radiance and positivity she really was:
“I am in love with life from the moment the sun rises to the second the sun sets,” Kathryn wrote. “And even the second it gets dark, because we are faced with seeing the stars. The stars just remind us how beautiful the day really was, even though it had rained. So yes, I learned at such a young age that even behind those dark rain clouds there is so much hope, love, strength, faith and happiness. It’s just waiting to sprinkle it when the time is right.”
Bethlehem Township Mayor Walter Baumgarten shared his condolences on Facebook:
“As a parent, there is nothing that brings us more grief than the loss of a beloved child,” he wrote.
“Those of us who remember Kathryn from our school system and her frequent visits to Heritage Park are heartbroken at her passing. She was a bright and shining star to all and many tears will be shed as we remember the joy and happiness she brought to all the lives she touched.”
Kathryn’s memorial service was held on June 5 at St. Ann’s Roman Catholic Church in Hampton.
Donations can be made in Kathryn’s name to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia in support of the Youth care service.
“May the memory of this blessed young woman in our community never fade and I know that I will not be alone in my prayers that she will rest in peace in the arms of the Lord God and remind us forever of what is good and great is in the human mind!” Mayor Baumgarten wrote.
“Be in peace Kathryn. God bless you.”
Click here for the full obituary.
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