Kathy Smith-DeGraw


Kathy Smith-DeGraw of Warwick, New York, passed away on January 21, 2018 at Orange Regional Medical Center. She was born June 30, 1951 to Elmer and Ann (Miller) Smith in Cleveland, Ohio.


Kathy earned her Bachelor of Arts from Valparaiso University and a Masters in Sociology from the New School for Social Research. She worked many years in the education and social work fields. Kathy was an adjunct professor at SUNY Orange and Marist College. She finished her career as an administrator at SUNY Rockland. She was also a past member of the Board of Directors for the Orange Orchestral Society, as music was one of her passions.


Kathy was a caring and loving wife and mother. Her family was always her number one priority, and it showed to anyone who was lucky enough to have met her; her face would beam anytime she spoke of her boys.  She never went anywhere without a book, and never threw one out. Kathy played the piano and violin and was a member of the Warwick Valley Chorale for 16 years, most recently serving as co-librarian. With the chorale, she was able to perform at many local venues, as well as Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center. Kathy also loved all animals and especially enjoyed spoiling her two cats. She was also a self-proclaimed chocolate connoisseur.


Kathy is survived by her loving husband Jack of 44 years and her two sons – Jeffrey of Newburgh, and Jonathan of Garrison. She is also survived by her sister Annette Blythe of San Antonio, TX and brother Bob Smith and wife Patty of Cleveland, OH; her brothers-in-law Paul DeGraw of CA and Jeff DeGraw and wife Sharon of Warwick; a sister-in-law Joyce DeGraw of Goshen; nieces and nephews Brock and Cara DeGraw, Bridget and Kristen Geary, Kim and Phillip Blythe, and Erik and Tim Smith.


There will be visitation on Wednesday, January 24, 2018 at Lazear-Smith & Vander Plaat Memorial Home, 17 Oakland Avenue, Warwick, NY, from 2-4 and 7-9pm. A Mass of Christian Burial will take place at St. Stephen’s Church, 75 Sanfordville Road, Warwick, NY on Thursday, January 25 at 10:30 a.m.  Interment will follow at St. Stephen's Cemetery.


In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in honor of Kathy may be made to the Warwick Valley Chorale, P.O. Box 1309, Warwick, NY 10990.


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Jack and family, I am so sorry to learn of Kathy's passing. My heartfelt condolences to you all. Kathy was such a sweet woman, and I loved watching her as she performed with the Warwick Chorale. Sincerely, Cecilia Walsh
To the Family of Kathy Smith-DeGraw, I knew Kathy from the Albert Wisner Public Library, where I work at the Reference Desk. Kathy was one of the kindest, sweetest-tempered people I've known. My condolences to you all. We will miss her very dearly here at the library. Sincerely, Barbara Fink
Barbara Fink
Dear Jack and family, I just found out about the passing of Kathy. I am so sorry. She was always so caring and kind. I cannot believe this especially because In the past couple of weeks I saw her twice and we were able to catch up on our kids and stuff. My deepest sympathy goes out to you and your sons. I wish I found out sooner so I could have paid my respects.
Eileen & James Caccavone
Jack and family, So sorry for your loss. I know we somehow lost touch, but she was such a good friend in a time time of my life that it really mattered. I knew she was an educator and had an interest in social work, delighted to hear of her musical endeavors , too. It sounds like she had a full life and that reflects on both of you. Sending prayers for peace and comfort for family and friends. Sue
Sue Karabinus Neidert
Dear Smith-DeGraw family, please accept our deepest condolences. Kathy was very kind, gentle,caring and supportive of all colleagues, program participants and anyone she came into contact with. She formed strong bonds with several employees. We are grateful for having had an opportunity to know her and work with her. She will be deeply missed. With our warmest regards and heartfelt sympathy, MHA Staff and Board of Directors
MHA in Orange County
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