Kathryn Erskine, 74: ‘Social justice was her passion’

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MANCHESTER, NH — Kathryn Blecatsis Erskine, 74, of Manchester, NH, died of complications from ovarian cancer on Saturday, February 15, at Catholic Medical Center.

Kathy was born April 28, 1945, in St. Petersburg, FL, a daughter of John and Effie (Koyiades) Blecatsis and had been a lifelong resident of the Manchester community.

Kathy was a 1963 graduate of Manchester Central High School and a 1967 graduate of Wellesley College. She received her Master’s in social work from Simmons College in 1969.

Her career in social work led Kathy to several non-profits and agencies in NH. As a Title 1 social worker for many years, Kathy worked tirelessly as an advocate for children and families. She was a homeless liaison for the Manchester School District, and she was also instrumental in developing the district’s Title 1 preschool program. Social justice was her passion, and she was respected by everyone who had the privilege to work with her. She was a mentor to many and a strong advocate for early childhood education and a champion for improving the lives of low-income children and their families.

Kathy enjoyed needlework, painting, and loved the Seacoast. She loved her family and adored her grandchildren. She is remembered by her friends and family as an incredibly kind and loving person with an infectious generosity of spirit.

Kathy’s husband of 47 years, Dick Erskine, passed in 2017. Other family includes her daughter Kate Erskine, and Kate’s wife Jolene McWhirter, and their children, Cora and Margo, all of Manchester; her son Greg Erskine and Greg’s wife Heather Erskine, and their children, Augusta and Rhea, all of Louisville, KY; her sister Melanie Brown and Melanie’s husband Mark, of Reynoldsburg, OH; her sister Joan Krohn of Manchester, NH; and many nieces, nephews, and cousins.

SERVICES: Calling hours will be held from 4-7 p.m., on Thursday, February 20, at Phaneuf Funeral Homes and Crematorium, located at 243 Hanover St. Manchester. Funeral Service will be held at 11:00 am, on Friday, February 21, in the funeral home. Burial will take place immediately following at Pine Grove Cemetery in Manchester.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Families in Transition, 122 Market St., Manchester, NH 03101. Click here to sign the virtual guest book.

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Phaneuf Funeral Homes

Phaneuf Funeral Homes & Crematorium