Kirsti Mary “Kish” Hetager Stark passed away on Saturday, September 18, 2021 at home and surrounded by family.
She was born in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, the daughter of Leroy Hetager and Mary Adair Hetager. She graduated from Punxsutawney High School (1970) and then attended the University of Pittsburgh for her undergraduate (1974) and graduate degrees in nursing.
On August 30, 1986, Kish married James Stark, of Johnstown, who survives. They recently celebrated their 35th wedding anniversary.
Also surviving are two daughters, Abigail Stark (husband Brandon Hickle) of Monongahela and Emily Stark (fiancé Andrew Bangor) of Latrobe; father, Leroy Hetager of Indiana; and brother, Kris Hetager (wife Joyce) of Taylors, SC; and numerous loved ones.
Kish spent her life as a nurse, guide, friend, mother, and wife. While teaching Nursing at Penn State Fayette and as a Nursing Advisor at the University of Pittsburgh, she taught the minds of many the skills of healing and aid. Her true passion was helping those impacted by mental illness. She worked at local hospitals such as Mayview State Hospital and Western Psychiatric Institute providing necessary services. Through her work at the University of Pittsburgh, Kish helped to develop many programs and produced academic research and publications that addressed mental health issues in our communities.
Kish is remembered for her faith in God, love of travel, and her dedication to her friends and family, near and far. She loved her grand-kitties, Socks and Rascal, and grand-pup, Skeeter, as well as her own pets, Mandi and Miss Kitti.
A memorial service will be held in the upcoming months to celebrate her accomplishments and life.
“So with you: Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy” – John 16:22.
Kish’s professional funeral arrangements have been entrusted to the Blair-Lowther Funeral Home & Crematory, Perryopolis, PA.
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