"How does one become a butterfly?"
she asked pensively.
"You must want to fly so much that you are willing to give up being a caterpillar.”
  • 70 years old
  • Born on October 24, 1948 in Omaha, Nebraska, United States.
  • Passed away on February 11, 2019 in Everett, Washington, United States.

Karen Jean Grant, age 70, passed away peacefully on February 11, 2019 in Everett, Washington after decades of living with Rheumatoid Arthritis. Karen was born October 24, 1948 in Omaha, Nebraska to Herman and Ruth Kortright and graduated from Benson High School in 1966. She attended The University of Nebraska at Kearney before her marriage to William Howard Grant in 1972.

Karen always gave more than she asked for, and then gave some more. A spirited and always smiling ginger, she believed you can do anything in life if you try. She was a nurturing Mom and Grammy, teaching everyone by her actions how to love, laugh, and take a moment to take a deep breath. She was an entrepreneur, with businesses in cleaning and interior decoration with her best friend, and also worked for family businesses. She went into high tech project management in the Silicon Valley with a successful career before retiring.  She adored quilting, sewing, cooking up a storm, and doing crafts with her grandchildren. Every day she went out of her way to make sure people were appreciated. If a larger than life redhead smiled at you one day while eating blueberry pancakes at a diner, that might have just been her way of sharing a little love with you.

She is survived by her husband William Howard Grant, her children – Jason Jeremy and his wife Michele of Everett, WA, Emily Marie and her husband Ron Gould of Morgan Hill, CA, her brother Keith Kortright of Omaha, NE, and five grandchildren - Zachary, Tyler, Evan, Andrew, and Aaliyah.

She is preceded in death by her parents Herman Kortright and Ruth Kortright-Anderson, sister Kay and husband Harry Lyman, and brother Dr. Kenneth Herman Kortright.

Interment at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Omaha, Nebraska will be at 10:30am on July 13th, with A Celebration of Life at noon at the Tangier Shrine Center.

As an expression of sympathy, memorial donations may be made to Providence Hospice and Home Care Foundation of Snohomish County, to whom the family is incredibly grateful for their generosity, kindness, and compassion.

Posted by Linda Whitesides on July 1, 2019
Karen, we called each other “little buddy “ and we were each other’s best buddies! From 7th grade and forever. Best women’s in each other’s weddings, college roommates, house roommates, creating Paper Dolls and working together, amazing times spent watching each other’s children grow into fine adults and suppling us with beautiful grandchildren to spoil. There are a lifetime of fabulous memories we created and not all shareable! I often felt I was more of a Kortright than a Decker. I love you forever and a day and was very blessed to have you as a best friend. Hope there are Rice Treats in heaven! Until we meet again!
Posted by Daniel Lyman on July 1, 2019
Karen was one of my favorite adults when I was growing up. I remember her sweetness and fun at my Grandpa Lyman's place, frolicking around the pool. I seem to remember riding in a Corvair with her and my Aunt Jane Lyman. She was a dear soul.
Posted by Bill Grant on March 12, 2019
Dear Karen,
For almost forty seven spectacularly wonderful years you have been my sidekick, confidante and lover. You gave us two fantastic children and five wonderful grandchildren which I love and adore. We lived life to the fullest and had great families and activities. Although you proceeded me in death, I will always continue to love you and adore you each and every day for the rest of my life. Damn I miss you. You will be so sorely missed. Sleep soundly, honey, until we shall forever meet again.
As for family and friends, I thank you for the love and adoration you granted her. I only hope I can live up to her expectations and the love you gave her. Like you, I realize she was very special and one not to be ever repeated. She has left a hole in my heart and I can not expect to find someone like her again. I so miss her deeply.
Hopefully great granddad (no pressure!)

And, of course, plain old Bill
Posted by Ruth Kamara on March 9, 2019
My dear Karen rest beautifully and peacefully honey. You will forever be in my thoughts. Working with you was a pleasure, you are so compassionate and cared deeply about others. You made sure all your caregivers were respected and cared for. You will never go into Karen’s room without her giving you little something to snack on! I miss you rest in lord’s hands! May your amazing soul Rest In Peace.
Posted by Jason Grant on March 5, 2019
I distinctly remember riding in the rear windshield area of the Dodge Monico when we took long trips.
And your sun tea. I remember your sun tea.
Posted by Leita Grant on February 28, 2019
Dear Karen....we shared a lot of good years, many laughs & great hair. May you rest in the arms of God knowing you & Bill left a great strength in legacy, your children. You will always be in my heart with a smile from the old days.
Posted by Michelle Diffin on February 25, 2019
My sweet friend Karen, I will forever be grateful to the Lord for your friendship and Love. I will admit I was a little worried about providing my cleaning service to you when we first met because I knew you once had your own cleaning service as well. I was nervous that your standards would be more than I could provide, however that was not the case at all Instead you thanked me and showed me so much gratitude! You even gave me tips and ideas that helped me with my small business. Iam so thankful to you for that. I would also like to thank you for all the conversations we had and laughs we shared. Thank you, for welcoming my boys and I into your home for hot chocolate, they still bring that up.Thank you, for helping with my babyshower when I was pregnant with River. I know that was a stressful event but you insisted on being there for me! That really meant a lot to me. Most importantly Thank You for treating me like family and not like just someone that worked for you. You will forever have a special place in my heart. We love you lots. Until we meet again. Rest easy my friend❤
Posted by Betty June Barton on February 23, 2019
My heart overflows with gratitude at how the Lord blessed me (and Dave) with your love and friendship over the years. You have been a ray of sunshine in my life, and always had a way of shedding the light on those around you. I have wondered many times at how you remained so positive when it was pouring rain in your life. You are remarkable! Lakewood lost some of the most wonderful people when you guys moved away and I miss you terribly. I love the memories of the wonderful times we've shared through the years and even in the difficult times, you were a trouper and I cherish those memories. I love thinking about the teas we've shared and the fun times we had together. I created a little collage of you with our "tea buddies" that you might enjoy - seeing and reminiscing with me. It can be found in the gallery.
I would love to reach right through this computer and hug you tight! Just know that I love you - always have, and I treasure you and your friendship. I'm trusting the Lord Jesus to hold you in His strong arms and take very good care of you. XOXO
Posted by Zack Gibson on February 23, 2019
Hey Grammy,
As you transition to the Utopia that is to come, make sure to not falter as you begin a new journey in the cosmos. Though at first it was truly difficult and hard to acknowledge that you had passed, I remembered just how much pain you were in on a day to day basis, and that you no longer feel that pain anymore. I will continue to be your loving and hard-working grandson as I continue my own journey to make the world a better place. Love you Gram, stay strong as you find your way to the next stage of existence
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Hi aunt Karen, me and Kenny Grant will always remember you and the times we shared growing up. Thank you for always being such a loving and supportive aunt. Will miss you always.
-Matt Grant (Posted from Facebook)
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Hi, dear Karen. This is Grace Anderson McGee (on Facebook). You have been in my prayers and my heart so much. I really miss you here at Lakewood. I think of all the times we had together at different teas and meals and sewing together. Mike is still enjoying using the apron you secretly helped me make for him so it could be a surprise. I sent you a text message a few days ago just to let you know I was thinking of you, missing you and praying for you. I hope you got that text. I miss your smile, your generosity, your love and your humor. You definitely added some sunshine to our lives. Thank you for being YOU! I love you, Karen. <3
-Grace Anderson McGee (Posted on Facebook)
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Oh Karen... you're such a shining light for so many. I was not able to spend as much time as I wanted with you, but you are so clearly loved!!! I'm so happy you touched my parents and aunt lives in such a fantastic way.... thank you for the homemade bread, for the love, and for the positive person that you are!!!
-Stephanie McGee (Posted from Facebook)
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Bette Hileman (Posted from Facebook): Dear Karen, It’s been a long time since I’ve seen you. Think of my Lakewood friends often. Bless you Karen.
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
My lovely, lovely sister: Yes you are my sister. You were from the very first time Bill brought you to the house and introduced to the Grant clan. I remember being in your wedding, and you were in mine. We had our babies close together. We did so many many things whilst living in Longmont. We were two peas in a pod. We were side kicks. Two very strong willed sidekicks. I loved you than, I love you now, and I will always love you. I could not imagine my life without ever having you in it. There are better things awaiting you. Be brave my fiery redhead.
-Susan Grant Getzschman (Posted from Facebook)
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Dear Karen - I only knew you briefly during your last years at Lakewood Park, but was amazed at your ability to put your own pain aside to be available to help others. Such a bright spirit! I am happy to have a few of your garden tools to remind me of you. My wish for you now: that the pain continues to be bearable because of the Deep Love that underlies it all. Peace, dear one! And my love to Bill as well - so glad you were able to move to be with your family.
-Judith Sumitra Burton (Posted from Facebook)
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Karen, you have always had a heart of gold. You and Bill did so much for all of us. I loved the time I spent with Emily at the house when you guys lived in Omaha. I look at you as a second mom. The memory of the trip to Seattle is so vivid in my mind and I could never forget it. I love you so much. Rest easy.
-Ashley Whitesides Francisco (Posted from Facebook)
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Dearest Karen, I will never forget the kindness and generosity you and Bill showed me when I first moved in to Lakewood! Teaching me to quilt, driving me around to the various stores, sharing dinners and movies at your house and your joyful little dog, Buddy. You are a loving, contributing spirit and I'm blessed to know you. From Lynne. (Posted from Facebook)
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
You brought so much joy any love to my family while my Mom was sick. While I admit I am a very anti-social person and never fully thanked you, the fact is I always appreciated and am sincerely grateful for everything you did for her and us.
I know if dad was still with us, he would be fretting and wanting to fly up and check on you.
You are a part of my family, and even if I don't send out cards or respond to messages, I love you and I want you to know you, Bill and the kids are always going to be a part of my story.
-Peter Banderas (Posted from Facebook)
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Karen and I go way back to her Amdahl days in Sunnyvale, CA. In fact I hired Karen and we became friends. She was a great hire, so reliable...and a great friend. Please give her my best.
-Mary Ann Mimlitsch (Posted from Facebook)
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Karen, This is Amanda, daughter of Mary Anne and George Wojcik. I just wanted to say that I will never ever forget your friendship of kindness and generosity. When Adam and I were to be married 12 years ago, you and Bill hosted our couples Bridal Shower. Such a fun and unique experience for everyone who came. Additionally, when the week of the big day came, you offered your home as a place to stay for my out if town sister Tammie and her family. This was beyond expected and soo helpful. We love you and feel blessed to have your friendship.
-Amanda Wojcik Gomez (Reposted from Facebook)
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Eric Whitesides (Reposted from Facebook)
When I got out of college, I had no contacts for jobs. During the keynote speech, I stated that it was slow going in the job market. Well she happened to be in town, and she told me afterwards that she was going to help me find one. She typed me up a resume and tool me to office max and bought me a briefcase and a book on how to get hired. Then we went home and did interview prep. Lo and behold, I got on at Mutual of Omaha. Three things I learn from her are, “sometimes its hard for young people to decipher thru the b_lls_it that is dished to you on a daily basis. When i asked how to repay her for the briefcase and the time, she laughed and said that a relative did it for her and now its my job to pay it forward, and lastly if don't find anything don't to look around the US, you can find good people anywhere, Omaha is limiting on opportunities. i love and thank you for being a part of our family. I am going thru this again now, job wise and wish you were here.
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Jeffrey Weissman (Posted from Facebook)
deep hugs
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Bill Hyatt (Posted from Facebook)
Emily Marie Grant my deepest condolences to you and your family.
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Susam Harris (Posted from Facebook)
Emily, I only met you once but really love your parents. They were a special couple to me I thoroughly enjoyed my time with them. I was there senior companion for a while. I met you and your brother at the hospital. Your all a very nice and sweet family take care of your dad. All of the family, you're in my prayers.
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Chip Fulton (Posted from Facebook): 
Condolences from the Fulton family, Jason. Our prayers are with you and family
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Amy Frigon (Posted from Facebook)
I'm so sorry for your loss! Hugs and prayers for peace! Love you!
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Jenny Lyman (Posted from Facebook)
So sorry for your loss. Though I only got to meet her a few times. I felt like I knew her well, Kay loved her dearly and talked about her all the time. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all. I know Kay and GG Ruth we’re there to great her with open arms.❤️
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Dear dear Karen, I remember what an amazing job you did helping to make sure Grandma Boyd’s 100th birthday party was amazing! You helped to make sure that it was not only a great party but also a special family reunion. You are so kind, smart,and generous. I love you!
-Kathy Boyd (Posted from Facebook): 

I am so sorry for your loss.
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Mary Ann Mimlitsch (Posted from Facebook):  So sorry for your loss
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
My dear old friend Karen! Remembering our early years together always brings a smile to me! You may not have realized how much you meant to Tami, Shelli and I! I am in hospital with severe pneumonia right now and on to skilled nursing tomorrow! My peaceful thoughts for you include being surrounded by your very loving family. Hey we did some things really well to be blessed with our happy children SO filled with love and gentle kindness! Love you Karen❤️
You are in my thoughts and prayers

What a wonderful genuine and loving woman! I know how much she will be missed! May love and happy memories fill your families hearts❤️. RIP Karen....
- Sondra J. Poffenberger (Posted from Facebook)
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Susan Parton Rogers (Posted from Facebook): I am so very sorry for your loss.
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Traci Balter Tyo (Posted from Facebook) · I am so very sorry for your loss. May her memories bring comfort during this difficult time.
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Paul Rogers (Posted from Facebook): So sorry for you loss
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Kris Meyn (Posted from Facebook) · I am so sorry Jason and Michele. Love, hugs and prayers to all of you.
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Connie Mobley (Posted from Facebook): sorry for you loss sending prayers
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Elizabeth Anne Springett (Posted from Facebook): Sending soothing and hugs.
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Aunt Karen I cannot say all that my heart would want me to. It is filled with more than 50 years of fond memories of my times with you.
As a child you were the larger than life redhead who was always so happy. Through the MANY ups and downs life has brought us the love of my aunt Karen was a constant. I wish I was there to say these things to you in person but I know you can feel the love that I and all our family is sending your way now as you prepare for the next phase in your journey. I know that my mom and dad and Grandma Ruth are there waiting to greet you and give you big hugs. And there will be no more pain.

I will miss you as I have missed you all these years apart.

My family counts themselves lucky to have known the gentle soul that is Karen.

I cannot thank you enough for all the love you have brought to me and mine. You have always been a giver. You gave until it hurt and then gave some more. You have always put others needs before yourself. Now you get to go to where all that love you have given will be given back to you and then some. Know that I and all of us still here in this world will be thinking of you every day and sending our love to you. I love you aunt Karen.

With tears streaming down my face I refuse say goodbye. I will only say Until we meet again with all my love.

We are so sorry for your loss. She is your angel now. Reunited with her mom and sister. I can hear them laughing and having a great time together. We are sending love and prayers.

-Mike Lyman (Posted from Facebook)
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Tally Bruning (Posted from Facebook): Prayers to you all. We loved her so much.
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Syd Reinarz (Posted on Facebook): I'm so very sorry.
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Danelle McCracken (Posted from Facebook): Thinking of you all. Aunt Karen was such a warm, caring and loving person. So many fond memories that we will all cherish. Many hugs and prayers.
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Mary Frederiksen Brown (Posted from Facebook): I am so sorry for your loss Emily and Jason! I have very found memories of your mother when we were growing up! Sending lots of love and prayers for healing as your family goes through this! ❤
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Tina Gass (Posted from Facebook): I am so sorry for your loss! Sending love your way.
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Tom Dalby (Posted on Facebook): Condolences to you and your family, Emily
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Paul Elam (Posted from Facebook):  Jason, I’m so sorry to hear of your mother’s passing. Glad she lived nearby in these final months and that you shared some great memories. Best to you and your family.
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Laura Cohn (Posted from Facebook): So sorry friend.
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Hello Karen. Although we haven't talked in quite a while, I have been thinking of you so much lately, even before I heard about your current situation. I miss our great conversations. You are one of the most real and honest people I know. We could really talk from the heart and share our innermost hopes, fears, and aspirations. I'm glad we became friends and helped each other through some tough times at work. You are a blessing to all of us. I will keep you in my heart. Love and hugs to you, my friend.

Very sorry to hear about your loss.
-Bonita Gohler (Posted with Facebook)
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Sammi White (Posted on Facebook): Your Mom was a very sweet women, I am so sorry to hear of the families loss.
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
Robin Porter (Reposted from Facebook): Sorry for your loss
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 21, 2019
I am so sorry. I grieve with you, and pray for healing peace and comfort at this very difficult time. Love you!
-Betty June Barton
(Reposted from Facebook)
Posted by Emily Grant-Gould on February 22, 2019
So sorry for your loss.
- Trisha Baker
(Reposted from Facebook)

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