Kate Svitek Memorial Foundation
Kate Svitek Memorial Foundation

From Loved Ones & Friends

Letter from Marci Leshner

Dear Ellen, Frank and Michael,

Several times in the past weeks I have walked into your home when you have sat and read letters, cards and notes you received sharing thoughts and remembrances of Kate. I sat mesmerized as you shared these stories with yourselves or whomever might have been listening at the time. I wished that I had known Kate better, that I had maybe a thought or an experience that I could relate to you. The more that I searched my memory, the more readily visions of Kate arose in my mind, and I realized that I did have something to share with you about Katie that will hopefully allow you to recall and make you smile.

I vividly remember Katie one evening at your house. We must have been there enjoying a Hadassah affair or possibly the square dance in the barn which was so much fun. I recall so clearly Katie watching us all from the door or a window of what I always called the little dollhouse right next to the main house. I remember her curls, short at that time, maybe she was seven or eight. I just remember her peaking out at us on that special evening.

The next vivid picture of her in my mind was at a dinner at the Flying Fish. I think it was your birthday. I especially recall how changed she looked at that particular time. She looked extremely grown up, maybe she was 15 or 16, very pretty, she had her hair straight (was that possible?). I even recall what she was wearing which was a green short outfit with a jacket or blazer. I remember that she looked happy!

And of course my most recent memory of Kate is the one I think of every time I walk into my kitchen. You are probably realizing that I’m about to recall to you my experiences with Katie the "cutco queen." Her saleswomanship changed my life forever as she shared with me the virtues of the knife that also spreads. (I cannot be without it), the 3 inch parer, and the 4 inch and so on… We sat in my dining room as she went through her shpiel. I’m sure I let her short cut it. I must say that these knives are always used by me – but now I cannot cut a tomato or a sandwich without thinking of Kate – her smile, her dimples, her beautiful hair, the ease which she seemed to possess, and most of all, so many mannerisms that remind me of you, Ellen.

As others have said to you many times, Kate did seem to have experienced in her too short life experiences and wonders that most of us only dream about. From reading a few of her essays it seems clear that she was a young woman that knew what she wanted from life. She had a vision and she was moving toward it. Her strength, her grace, her resolve are a tribute to you and your family.

May her memory keep her alive as you keep sharing her dreams.

With much love,

Marcie Leshner

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