Katherine L. Flanders, 85, of Pittsfield and formerly of Gloucester, MA, died Sunday, September 20, 2020 at Williamstown Commons, where she had resided for the last year.
Katherine was born in Gloucester on July 7, 1935 a daughter of the late Joseph and Bertha V. Putaansuu Frontiero and was a graduate of Gloucester High School. Following high school, Katherine earned her degree as a licensed practical nurse from Westfield State.
Her nursing career started with rotation working in the ER and different floors in hospitals. She then began working and remained in geriatric care. She worked for many nursing homes throughout Berkshire County, and retired from the former Providence Care Center in Lenox after 12 years. All totaled, Katherine worked for over 35 years as an LPN and was passionate about the work she did as a nurse.
Growing up in Gloucester, Katherine always kept her love of the ocean with her. She loved walks on the shore, especially Good Harbor Beach.
Katherine’s family was the most important thing in the world to her. She cherished family photos and would often share them with friends. She was also proud to be the family historian. There wasn’t an old photo she couldn’t identify nor a story she couldn’t recount years later.
She had a generous way about her and opened her heart and home up to many throughout the years. It didn’t matter to her if she wasn’t your mother by blood; whether a niece or nephew or even one of the neighborhood kids, Ma Flanders would provide love, a warm meal, a shoulder to cry on and a word of advice to anyone who needed it. She was honest in her approach to guidance, which made people come back for more.
A fantastic cook, Katherine loved to make a meal. It was truly impossible to leave her house with an empty stomach. Her home was the family gathering place and everyone knew without question where Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve would be enjoyed year after year.
Katherine had a close group of friends and she looked forward to the weekly “Bunco Night.” She also enjoyed crafts, especially knitting, ceramics and sewing.
Katherine married Kenneth R. Flanders on Sept. 25, 1955, at St. Ann's Church in Gloucester. They were married for 46 years before his passing on March 5, 2002.
She is survived by three sons, Kenneth R. Flanders Jr. and Joseph P. Flanders, both of Pittsfield and Stephen M. Flanders and his wife Dawne of Gloucester, a daughter, Donna M. Santora and her husband Fred of Pittsfield, nine grandchildren, Freddie Santora Jr., Angelo “AJ” Santora , Hannah Flanders, Chrissy Flanders Hyatt, Sean Flanders, Kody Flanders, Tate Flanders, Maddy Flanders and Sam Flanders and six great grandchildren, Blake, Jace, Christopher, Saphira, Savannah and Charlotte.
Katherine also leaves her sisters, Rosalie MacDonald of Delaware and Ida Kavel of Florida, her brother-in-law, Sonny Muise, and her many beloved nieces, nephews and cousins.
In addition to her husband, she was predeceased by her brothers, Joseph and Michael Frontiero, and infant Joseph Frontiero, three sisters, Marie Muise, Ilona McDonald, and Alexandra “Sandra” Grant, her brothers-in-law, Edward “Mac” MacDonald, Ronald Kavel, and Robert Grant, and her sister in-law Marcia Frontiero.
The Flanders family would like to extend a sincere thanks to both Williamstown Commons and Hospice Care in the Berkshires for the outstanding care and compassion their mom received.
Per Katherine’s wishes, there will be no public services.
In lieu of flowers, if friends desire, memorial donations may be made to the “Activities Fund at Williamstown Commons”, “Hospice Care in the Berkshires” or “Boys & Girls Club of the Berkshires”, in care of the Devanny-Condron Funeral Home, 40 Maplewood Ave. Pittsfield, MA 01201.