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Kathryn Larson, 86, Wiota

September 5, 2018 GMT

Kathryn E. “Kay” Larson, 86, Wiota, passed away Saturday, Sept. 1, 2018, at Lafayette Manor in Darlington.

She was born Feb. 25, 1932, in the town of Fayette, to Lawrence “Lonnie” and Josephine “Bessie” (Burris) Cavanaugh. Kathryn loved growing up on the farm and attending rural country school. Kathryn graduated from Darlington High School near the top of her class in 1950. After graduation she attended Bayless Business College in Dubuque, Iowa, and earned a degree as a legal secretary. Kathryn worked for Johnson and Barnard, Attorneys at Law, in Darlington, which was challenging yet invigorating work. In later years, she enjoyed working seasonably at Swiss Colony in Monroe. Kathryn embraced hard work and was attentive to every detail. Kathryn was united in marriage to Robert A. Larson on May 15, 1954, at Holy Rosary Catholic Church in Darlington. After their marriage, Kathryn and Robert purchased their own dairy farm in 1964 near Wiota, where they farmed until their retirement.


Kathryn is survived by her husband, Robert of Wiota; three children, Brian (Kaye) Larson of Wiota, Mark Larson of South Wayne, Wisconsin, and Marcia (Jim) Modaff of Juneau; five grandchildren, Bradley Modaff, Ashley (Matt) Bartol, Sara (Chris) Allen, Derek Larson and Dalton Larson; one great-grandchild, Kilian Bartol and baby Allen anticipated in November; two sisters, Margaret Zimmerman of Darlington and Joanne (Robert) Monson of Janesville; and sister-in-law, Joan Cavanaugh of Deforest; along with many nieces and nephews.

Kathryn was preceded in death by her parents; three brothers, Lawrence Jr. in infancy, Melvin and David Cavanaugh; and one sister, Mary Johnson.

Kathryn was a member of Holy Rosary Catholic Church in Darlington, its Council of Catholic Women and Catholic Daughters of America. She contributed to the community in many ways: as a 4-H leader where she enjoyed seeing their successes in youth projects displayed at county and state fairs, Lafayette County Fair Secretary, Black Hawk School Board, Wiota and Lafayette County Homemaker organizations, Red Hat Club, UW-Extension microwave cooking instructor, Cub Scouts den mother, reading to students at Black Hawk Elementary and Black Hawk FFA Alumni. Her passion for learning and helping others has been passed along to her children. Kathryn and Robert always looked forward to attending all of their grandchildren’s school and community events. Kathryn also loved cooking, baking and preserving summer produce and sharing it with family and friends. Kathryn will be sadly missed and fondly remembered by all who knew her.


A family remembrance will be held at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 11, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at Holy Rosary Catholic Church, a branch of Our Lady of Fatima Parish (104 E. Harriet Street, Darlington) with the Rev. Joji Reddy officiating. Burial will be at Holy Rosary cemetery in Darlington. A visitation will be held from 4-8 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 10, at the church where a rosary will be prayed at 4 p.m. A visitation will also be held from 10-10:45 a.m. on Tuesday at church.

Erickson Funeral Home in Darlington is serving the family. Online condolences may be expressed to the family at www.ericksonfuneralhome.com.