On September 2, 2017, our heart’s bright light, Kathleen Mongelluzzi VanderHeijden passed into the loving embrace of God, continuing her journey of goodness, and love.
She was born in Lebanon, PA, on June 21, 1948, to Louis (Gene), and the late Yolanda Mongelluzzi. She graduated from Lebanon Catholic High School (‘66) , and College Misericordia(‘70). Kathy dedicated her professional life to educating young children, health and nutritional awareness, and environmental activism. Kathy was the golden thread in the fabric of the many lives she touched. Her conversations with family, friends and all whom she met were, at their core, questions about their interests, hopes, joys, or concerns.
To her children she was a steady, unstintingly supportive source of unconditional love and guidance.
To her grandchildren, she was “Mimi,” the giver of the best hugs, the expressive reader of stories, the creator of healthy treats, and the warm hand to hold.
Her appreciation of nature’s beauty was reflected in her summer flower gardens, the chirping of birds at her feeders, and the sunsets of Edisto Island. For all she was to us, “The song has ended, but the melody lingers on.”
Kathy and her husband, Walter, directed the Dorado Beach Academy, Dorado , PR, and were the founding headmaster/teacher team when it became Dorado Academy. After moving to Lancaster in 1976, Kathy was part of the founding team of the Montessori Academy of Lancaster, where she taught and directed the toddler and music programs. Later she taught in the Hempfield School District as an elementary substitute teacher. For 40 years Kathy partnered with the Shaklee Corporation to improve people’s health through nutritional education, and products. She was a tireless advocate for the environment through personal responsibility, and protective conservation policy.
Kathy is survived by her husband, Walter, whom she met at age 15, and with whom she shared 46 years of loving, joyful, marriage. They raised four children, Vincent L., (Mark Stoetzer), Austin, TX, Michael F., (Pamela) and their children, Sophia and Lena, Wallingford, CT, Jeffrey W., (Sara), and their children Madelyn and Anna, Carlisle, PA, Julia M. Cristino, (Matthew), East Providence, RI. She is also survived by a sister, Stephanie Sholly, Annville, PA, and many nieces and nephews.
A memorial service and celebration of Kathy’s life will be held 11:00 A.M., Saturday, September 9, 2017, at Mountville Church of the Brethren, 60 Clay Street, Mountville, PA, 17554. A visitation will precede the service from 9:00 A.M.—11:00 A.M. Interment will be at Hershey Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, family and friends are invited to make donations in Kathy’s memory to the Mountville Church of the Brethren Memorial Fund for social justice projects and the support of the New Community Project.