CHESHIRE - Katherine Ann Berman passed away on May 9, 2017 at the age of 67. She died in an auto accident in Woodbury, CT, just miles from her childhood home in Middlebury, CT.
Kathy was born on October 25, 1949 to Stanley and Alice Alexinski and was the eldest of four children. She flourished in school, graduating from Wilby High School in 1967 and the University of Connecticut in 1971. She later would earn a Masters in Education from Fairfield University.
Teaching was in her blood early on. She taught elementary school for 14 years, mostly the 4th grade at Chase School in Waterbury, CT. When she wasn’t reading to students, she was pursuing her love of botany by owning a plant store in Middlebury, fittingly called “Plantasia.” Both passions continued throughout her life.
She married Chris Berman on July 23, 1983, a happy day all around as it was also her beloved mother’s birthday. They moved to Cheshire in 1984, and soon thereafter had two children: Meredith, born in 1986, and Douglas, born in 1987.
Her teaching career ended, but her role in education and reading never did. She served as a trustee as well as a substitute teacher at then St. Margaret’s McTernan School, which both children attended through 8th grade. When both moved on to Choate Rosemary Hall for high school, she became a member of the Parents Advisory Board.
She became a pivotal board member of Literacy Volunteers of Greater Waterbury, helping to grow a program that teaches reading and writing to community members who want to learn or become more proficient in the English language. This allowed her to return to her roots, as an arm of the LVGW participated in a book program for elementary students. She also served the community as a board member of St. Mary’s Hospital.
Her husband’s job at ESPN allowed them to travel. Kathy loved the ocean, and yes, the native plants. Two of her favorite spots on earth were West Maui in Hawaii and Captiva Island on the Florida Gulf Coast, where her gardens gave her such joy, and where every sunset is a painting and practically a spiritual event. With Chris just recently semi-retiring, she looked forward to more time with him, friends, nature, and her beloved Kindle. Chris often said she read “for both of us.”
Besides her husband of almost 34 years, Mrs. Berman is survived by her sister Sandra Lewis of New Preston, CT, her two children Meredith and Doug, her soon-to-be daughter-in-law Clare Barkeley, and her nephews and nieces Jim, Jessica, Jeff, Sara, & Riley.
Family and friends are invited to a memorial service on Wednesday May 17, 2017 at 1 PM at the Seymour St. John Chapel at Choate Rosemary Hall School, 333 Christian St., Wallingford, CT. Burial will be held at the convenience of the family in Cheshire Hillside Cemetery and there are no calling hours. The Alderson-Ford Funeral Home of Cheshire is assisting with the arrangements. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Literacy Volunteers of Greater Waterbury, the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation, or to Brown University, where we will be establishing a scholarship in her honor.