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Katherine Louise (LaPiro) Harrington was born in Tulare, CA, September 1, 1950 and passed peacefully on January 17, 2023 after a long fight with many health problems, including lung and throat issues at the age of 72.
She grew up in Orosi and Dinuba area and went to Orosi High School where she sang in the choir.
She was known as Little Kathy because she was 7 years old when she gained her sister-in-law, also named Kathy.
When her brother Arlie got married, Kathy was crying because she “was losing her brother.” But her future sister-in-law came from a big Wilson family where she was one of seven girls. One of those girls, Patsy, told Little Kathy that “she wasn’t losing her brother, she was gaining a whole bunch of sisters.” From that time on, she considered the Wilson family as her family, too.
She had two marriages, first to Mike Windecker and then to Jim Harrington. Her last relationship was with Dean Cesena and they were together for 17 years. They shared their life together in Tulare until his unexpected passing on Jan. 2, 2023.
Kathy was an outgoing person who never met a stranger. She had a colorful, adventurous life and she was a born performer. She loved the stage in any form, whether it be high school choir, or her job performing as a clown, or being the snake lady in the carnival which led to a part in the Howling VI movie, or a “circus freak”. She loved helping her brother with his Karaoke business and then started one of her own in Visalia, performing at the Old Jailhouse.
Her mother was her lifelong best friend. They did everything together. They especially loved camping trips to Morro Bay.
She was preceded in death by her parents, Dorothy Ellen (Halstead) and Frank LaPiro, her brother, Arlie Clift, Jr and her partner in life, Dean Cesena.
She leaves behind her sister-in-law Kathy Clift of Colorado Springs, and nephew, Charles Clift of Lucerne, CA and niece Arlien Kennedy of Colorado Springs.
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