May 5, 1931 - March 3, 2017
Kathleen Pierce (nee Petry) age 85, of Havertown, passed away peacefully on March 3, 2017. Former pianist, organist and choir director at Narberth Presbyterian Church and Bethany Evangelical Church (previously known as Bethany Collegiate Presbyterian Church). Beloved wife of the late Forrest Pierce; devoted mother of April (Jan) Van Dyke, Mark (Louise), Glenn, and Jennifer (Michael) Toland; cherished grandmother of Greg and Matthew Van Dyke, Rachel and Stephanie Toland and Stephen Pierce; and loving sister of Victor Petry. The family will receive guests on Monday, March 13 at 6 p.m. at Narberth Presbyterian Church, Narberth, Pa. with Celebration of Life Service following at 6:30. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in her name to Narberth Presbyterian Church, Music Ministry; savethechildren.org; or Neighborhood Hospice www.nvnacc.com Kathleen grew up in Aliquippa, Pa., with her parents, Victor Jesse and Martha (Habedank) Petry, and two younger siblings, which included a sister, Marlene (deceased), and brother, "Pete." Kathleen started piano lessons at age 7, and within a few years played the piano at church and school. Saturday evenings she played for the family hymn singing at her grandparents' home. She recalled the family singing through the hymnal from beginning to end. Kathleen took piano lessons near her home, and then later traveled on the train for more professional lessons in New York. Her teacher, Edwin Hughes, was a 3rd generation student from Beethoven. (Beethoven taught Czerny, Czerny taught Leschetizky, Leschetizky taught Hughes, and Hughes taught Kathleen.) After high school, she attended Philadelphia Conservatory of Music and was trained as a classical concert pianist and graduated in the spring of 1953. She met Forrest Pierce at Bethany Church on Easter Sunday, and they were married on Sept.5, 1953. They were happily married for 46 years until Forrest died in January of 2000. Kathleen taught piano lessons and played the piano at Bethany Church on occasion while being a full time mother of her four children. As her children grew, so did her piano skills in accompaniment with any number of singers and musicians. Her friend and fellow church musician, Dorothy Carter, encouraged her to play the organ. Kathleen said that she couldn’t because she had never taken lessons. With Dorothy’s mentoring, Kathleen observed others and taught herself how to play the organ—a secret she just recently revealed publically. Eventually, she became organist and choir director for multiple years at Bethany and Narberth Presbyterian Churches. She spent the last 42 years contributing to Narberth’s Music Ministry. Her life’s goal was to worship God through her music. One of her most recent accomplishments, besides starting duet and trio singing groups, was her creation of a men’s quartet. This quartet, now known as the Havertones, sang the national anthem at Phillies games under her direction. This was truly a thrill for Kathleen since she was such an avid Phillies fan. She also enjoyed receiving hugs from the Phillies Phanatic. Kathleen loved to garden, sew, cook and spend time with her family. Her grandchildren were special to her. She regretted not being able to see her grandchildren graduate from college, marry and become professionals in their careers. She loved and was loved by many people. Kathleen was a special person and a wonderful mother. (by April Pierce Van Dyke)
Kathleen Pierce (nee Petry) age 85, of Havertown, passed away peacefully on March 3, 2017. Former pianist, organist and choir director at Narberth Presbyterian Church and Bethany Evangelical Church (previously known as Bethany Collegiate Presbyterian... View Obituary & Service Information
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Kathleen Pierce (nee Petry)
age 85, of Havertown, passed away...
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