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Kathleen Marie Sumera

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Memories & Candles

“Kate was a very thoughtful and caring person. I will never forget when I first started teaching gifted and talented I was overwhelmed! In order to...Read More »
1 of 11 | Posted by: Katherine Fellows - CT - friend

“I can't think of anyone more caring, loving and thoughtful than you gram. My first memory of you was your visit to the Philippines. I remember...Read More »
2 of 11 | Posted by: Maximino Sumera - Sharon, MA

“I am proud of the principles and values that you always stood for, and instilled in us as young boys. I am proud that you dedicated your life to...Read More »
3 of 11 | Posted by: Victor Sumera - Quincy, MA, MA

“I am proud of the principles and values that you always stood for, and instilled in us as young boys. I am proud that you dedicated your life to...Read More »
4 of 11 | Posted by: Victor Sumera - Quincy, MA - Son

“Gram,I was always proud to have you as my grandmother. You were strong willed, independent, quick witted, and humble, characteristics that I always...Read More »
5 of 11 | Posted by: Collin Sumera - Washington, DC

“Gram, the first time we met you made me feel at home right away. You welcomed me into your heart, and shared with me your love for animals and nature...Read More »
6 of 11 | Posted by: ToQuyen Doan - Washington, DC

“Gram, the first time we met you made me feel at home right away. You welcomed me into your heart, and shared with me your love for animals and nature...Read More »
7 of 11 | Posted by: ToQuyen Doan - Friend

“My grandmother was a woman of great accomplishments. She spent much of her life educating those around her. Not only was she a teacher, but she...Read More »
8 of 11 | Posted by: Kristiana Sumera - Woodstock, CT

“Kathleen was a spiritual influence on me and I'm profoundly grateful for having had her in my life, particularly during my formative years while I...Read More »
9 of 11 | Posted by: Seth Itzkan - Family Friend

“Blessing and Peace to you, Kathleen.You had a remarkable life filled with love,admiration and activities. We were maternal cousins and spent more...Read More »
10 of 11 | Posted by: Martha Lafrance - Danvers, MA

“How does a son begin to express the memories he has for his mother? In my 59 years, there have been so many fond and loving memories made from the...Read More »
11 of 11 | Posted by: Rennie Sumera - Brooklyn, CT


Kathleen Marie Sumera, 82, passed away peacefully at home on November 24, 2020 surrounded by family. Kathleen is survived by her son Victor Sumera and wife Minda; son Rennie Sumera and partner Laurel Bellavance; Cousin, Martha Lafrance; childhood friend, Marie Drake; grandchildren Maximino and wife Ruijie, Collin and partner Toquyen, Kristiana and fiance Carlos, Paolo; great grandchildren Caylee and Wyatt; and her two cherished cats Deenie and Francie.

Kathleen was born in Schenectady, NY to Odena Antoinette Martel and Robert Emmet O'Brien on June 15, 1938.
Raised in Boston from a very young age, Kathleen married Victoriano A. Sumera in 1959. Although a short marriage, she and Victoriano remained close loving friends raising their two children together.

As a lifetime learner and advocate for education, Kathleen in her early thirties, earned her Bachelor's Degree from Boston State while raising her two preteen boys. She was extremely proactive with her children's school activities, involving herself in most teacher parent relations.

She was adamantly opposed to racism and racist base segregation practices and policies. She was an activist for improving integration and racial harmony. In the late sixties through the seventies, she was part of a small group of parent throughout the city of Boston advocating for desegregation within the Boston Public School System. She in rolled her two sons in the William Monroe Trotter Sub-System elementary education program: an experimental integrated program that incorporated a new approach towards teaching elementary through high school age students. Several summers, she worked for the Boston Public School System as a counselor, coordinating workshop and counseling leadership skills while promoting racial harmony and acceptance for appreciating diversity to inner city public school students. In her early fifties she continued her education earning her M. Ed. from UMass Boston. She worked at MIT, and taught English as a second language at the Catholic Charities El Centro Del Cardenal Education Center for over 35 years.

In 1977, she purchased her home in the Savin Hill neighborhood of Dorchester Massachusetts, where she lived for 42 years. She would always mention how blessed she was to have been able to purchase her home being a single woman, how it was a proud lifetime accomplishment. She felt so blessed and fortunate to have been able to remain in her home for 42 years with exception to her last year. Unfortunately, due to her aging and medical condition, she came to the understanding that she needed more assistance. She sadly had to leave her home to move in with her son in Connecticut. However, making many overnight visits back, continue the joys and pleasures of her home.

Kathleen had a deep love for humanity, the arts, and nature, shown through her admiration for Saint Francis of Assisi, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, JFK, Gandhi, Mother Teresa and Project Bread in Boston, helping to organize the walk for hunger fundraiser. Kathleen donated to a variety of nonprofits, and volunteered her time to ensure inclusion, fairness, and justice for positive social change in the community.
She appreciated fine arts and culture, and was a member of the Museum of Fine Arts and frequented the Boston Ballet Company's production of the Nutcracker, plus many other plays and musical productions in the Theater District of Boston. A few of her favorite musicians and actors included Harry Belafonte, Nat King Cole, Ella Fitzgerald, Paul Newman, Robert Redford, Sidney Poitier, Tom Selleck, and Peter O' Toole.
She loved watching sunsets from her porch and feeding the birds and the many little yard animals. In addition to her front porch, Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park in Maine were two other of her most favorite places. She was always in her element when sitting on a beach, anywhere, feet in the water while watching the ocean tide coming in. If there was a sunset, Oh, how she would be in her glory!
Kathleen had many interests. She was an avid reader and subscribed to literary magazines and journals, owning hundreds of books in her home library. She was a self-taught and fabulous cook, preparing delicious meals for her family. She made the best shepherd's pie, meatloaf, stuffed peppers, chili, chicken curry; birthday cakes made with her homemade peanut butter frosting coated with M&Ms were the grandchildren's favorite! And of course her chiffon pies, a holiday tradition. Mom/Gram will be missed terribly!

Her life will be celebrated privately with close friends and family. In lieu of flowers, Kathleen would want donations to be made to The Animal Rescue League of Boston, an organization that was close to her heart. www.ARLBoston.org.