“Kathy with a K” was born Kathleen Nancy Hicks on June 29, 1948 in Chicago, Illinois, but grew up in Shreveport, Louisiana, where she passed away, Saturday, September 10, 2022.
After graduating from St. Vincent’s Academy in 1966 (you “couldn’t scare her because she was raised by nuns!”), she attended nursing school before beginning her lifelong work as an Licensed practical nurse. She began her career at Dr. German’s OBGYN clinic where she became the proud first viewer of her sister Beth’s positive pregnancy test. She then transitioned to the VA Hospital where her work went far beyond her job title to ensure her veteran patients received the best of care.
She was a proud daughter of her World War II veteran Daddy and a loving older sister to both her brother, Tommy, and sister, Beth. She raised her girls to be strong and independent (often in family costumes at local parades, much to their chagrin). She was the complete embodiment of les bons temps--creating big and boa-filled celebrations for the smallest of life’s wins, dancing often and cooking up the meanest holiday meals from scratch. She was a proud member of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood, avid listener of Car Talk, and lover of weird hats. She had a green thumb, was a voracious reader, Shreveport Little Theatre-goer and expert peeler of crawfish.
Amidst the good, Kathy also knew she was not perfect. Like all of us, she carried her own regrets and recognized the tangled beauty of imperfect love.
But, when disappointed, she prioritized forgiveness and redemption… even for herself.
These things were the outflow of a big and robust love. She and her sissy held a unique bond from the time of Beth’s birth to the end of Kathy’s passing. She loved her children, Heather and Amanda, immeasurably. Finally, she bypassed simply tolerating those who were different and celebrated them instead. She provided a safe (and fun!) space to land to anyone and everyone who did not have one of their own.
It is this big love, radical acceptance and that giggly contagious laugh that will live on in all of us who were just lucky enough to be in her orbit. Dear Kathy with a K, our new favorite spirit in the sky, we raise a glass to you.
She is preceded in death by her parents, Harold Roland and Margaret Russel Hicks and husband, Daniel Murphy. She is survived by her daughters, Heather Hendrix and Amanda Reagan; sister, Elizabeth Plauche’ and her daughter, Emily; brother, Tommy Hicks and wife, Mary Jo; and their children, Rachel Brooks and Vallon Hicks. Special thanks to those who linked arms with Kathy in her final battle with Alzheimers: Marjorie Butler, Lisa Jackson, Dr. Robert Savory, the nurses and staff of Wilis-Knighton Hospice and, most notably, the women of Patty’s Place, Connie Cliburn, Suzone Linder and Patty Linder.
A visitation will be held Tuesday, September 13, 2022 from 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m., at Rose-Neath Funeral Home, 1815 Marshall St., Shreveport, Louisiana.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Cure Alzheimer’s Fund, 34 Washington St., Suite 310 Wellesley Hills, MA 02481.