Caring for others was one of the many qualities Amanda Kate Mckenney will always be remembered for. Kate was a kind, compassionate, and nurturing person.
This beautiful baby girl was born at Bronson Hospital in Kalamazoo, Michigan, in the wee hours of the morning, on June 12, 1977. She passed away peacefully at Bronson Hospital on May 21, 2021.
By the age of three, Kate attended preschool, and loved making crafts, and playing with the other children.
Kate was a very creative child. She would play for hours with her Barbies, making an entire Barbie complex out of cardboard boxes. She used her eye for color and design to decorate the complex with wallpaper, and made furniture for her ever-growing Barbie home. Kate was a fun-loving girl with a side of mischievousness.
Kate attended Kalamazoo Public Schools, where she made many life-long friendships. During her teen years, Kate and her friends enjoyed each others’ company, and many a-shenanigan took place. Kate graduated from Loy Norrix High School in 1995.
She then continued her education at Glen Oaks College in the nursing program, and received her degree as a registered nurse, following in the footsteps of her grandmother, Linda Burns.
After college, Kate met and married Brandon Schuring. They welcomed their son, Carter William Schuring on December 13, 2003. They were overjoyed with the birth of Carter, as they had always wanted children. Carter was their whole world. They were loving, devoted parents. Sadly, Brandon predeceased Kate and Carter in January of 2004.
Kate’s life changed forever when she met Shawn McKenney and his daughter Erinn in the summer of 2006. Carter and Erinn were immediately two peas in a pod. It did not take long for Kate and Shawn to fall in love. They were married on a beautiful July day in 2012 at Wetmore Landing beach in Marquette, MI surrounded by family and friends.
Kate absolutely loved reading Carter bedtime stories and weaving together elaborate and magical stories about the escapades of his blanket. She continued this memorable bedtime routine with Carter and Erinn as a family tradition.
Kate enjoyed spending time with family including frequent trips to Lake Michigan (always looking for beach glass!!), hiking with the dogs, family trips to Marquette, attending the kids sports events (even learning the detailed rules of baseball and football), and celebrating birthdays and holidays. Kate always took pleasure in finding the perfect gift whether a birthday present or white elephant holiday gift.
Kate worked in the operating room at Bronson Hospital for twenty years. During that time, her compassion for others led her to volunteer on a medical mission trips to Honduras. Volunteering in Honduras and working for Hospice were two of Kate’s most fulfilling professional experiences. After Bronson, Kate went on to be a hospice nurse. She enjoyed connecting with her patients on a personal level. Kate had a calming influence on her patients as they faced an uncertain future.
Kate loved animals! She never let an animal she didn’t love (or think she needed to take home with her). If she saw a helpless animal on the side of the road, she would stop the car, and rescue it if she could. She has had many cats and dogs during her lifetime. Cats Leo and Marcell and dogs Chunk and Ruby are already missing her warmhearted and devoted presence.
Kate absolutely loved the beach for its restorative qualities. We will always remember Kate walking the beaches looking for beach glass, fossils, and blue stones.
"Her smile will never fade. Her voice will echo gently in your heart. Her sweetness will come back to you again and again in memories. She is still yours, to cherish, remember, and love."
Forever and lovingly remembered by her husband Shawn Mckenney and children Carter Schuring and Erinn McKenney. Her mother and stepfather, Sandra and James Witek, along with step-sisters Suzanne and Kelly Jo, three half siblings Jenny, Celeste, and Abe, and their families. In-laws Frank and Mary McKenney, sisters-in-law Carrie and Megan and their families. Bill and Shirley Schuring and family. She was also survived by many aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends. Other survivors include Daniel VanderWeele and Thomas O’Connor. Harry and Ann Fifolt her Godparents. Preceding Kate in death are maternal grandparents Burton and Linda Burns.
In lieu of flowers the McKenney family would like to provide the following options:
Donations to Carter Schuring’s college GOFUNDME https://www.gofundme.com/f/college-fund-for-carter?utm_campaign=p_cp_display&utm_medium=copy_link&utm_source=customer
Donations to the SPCA of Southwest Michigan https://spcaswmich.networkforgood.com/
Donations to the family to Shawn McKenney 698 Chadds Ford Way Kalamazoo, MI 49009