Thursday, June 13, 2024

Kathleen Leona Gear, 76, passed her love for cooking to her children

ST. JAMES — Kathleen Leona Gear, 76, passed away Sunday, Dec. 9, 2018, at SECU Hospice House of Brunswick. A longtime St. James resident, she and her husband built their home here in 1995, moving here permanently in 2001.

Kathy was born in DeKalb, Illinois. Kathy graduated from Bishop Baraga High School in Marquette, Michigan, and attended Indiana University. In 1964, she married James Gear, who survives. Also surviving are her children, James “J.R.” (Jennifer); twin daughters, Julie (Doug) and Jodi (Jeff); five grandchildren, Logan, Olivia, Jordan, Brady and Colin, all living in Northern Virginia; and sister, Barbara Bowman of Logansport, Indiana. She was preceded in death by her parents, Victor and Lucille Polzin; and brother, Robert Polzin.

Kathy was a devoted mother, a great cook and entertainer, and a remarkable Navy spouse. She was a true homemaker whose home was always open to friends and family alike. Her motherly touch was evident in the Halloween costumes she made for her children, the First Communion dresses she sewed for her daughters, and Christmas cookies she baked with her grandchildren. Most importantly for her family, she passed her love of cooking to all her kids. She cherished every moment with her grandchildren, especially the summers at the Outer Banks.

Kathy moved the family 10 times over 20 years and was an astounding Navy wife all along the way. She served as the San Diego Navy Wives Club president and was the ultimate Navy ambassador during her husband’s final duty station in Philadelphia. Kathy’s skill in the kitchen and mastery of etiquette were routinely employed hosting 18 international Navy officers in her home as she honored them and other foreign dignitaries.

As her children journeyed out on their own, Kathy returned to work as a loan officer at Navy Federal Credit Union in Vienna until permanently retiring to St. James. During her past 17 years at St. James, she enjoyed playing with (and beating) her friends at duplicate bridge, playing golf and traveling overseas.

A funeral service will be held at noon, Friday, Dec. 14, at the St. James Chapel, with the Rev. Bob Lee officiating. A reception will be held at The Reserve Club at St. James following the service. A memorial service, interment and celebration of life will be held at Arlington National Cemetery on a later date.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to SECU Hospice House of Brunswick, 955 Mercy Lane, Bolivia, NC 28422; or to St. James Fire Department, 3628 St. James Drive, St. James, NC 28461.

Share online condolences with the family at Peacock-Newnam & White Funeral and Cremation Service.

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