The family of Elizabeth (Betty) A. Kolka, 65, of Middletown NY, is heartbroken to share that Betty has left this world and joined her parents, Ed & Shirley Barrett, her sister, Susan Bacheller and many other family members on October 7, 2020 after a long, warrior’s battle with Stage 4 Metastatic Breast Cancer. She spent the past years of her life enjoying her family and traveling with the love of her life of over 47 years, Michael Kolka, and their grandchildren, Anthony, Marissa, Sean Robert, Reilly, Brady and Joseph, visiting their favorite places and discovering new places. She was an amazing mother and best friend to her children, Bridget and David Rivera, Elizabeth and Sean Shovelin, Michael and Jessica Kolka and their children, Brett and Kaileigh. She is also survived by her siblings, Edward Barrett (Eileen), Eileen Erichsen (Frank), Michael Barrett (Patty) and Mary Barrett, as well as her siblings in law, Maureen Cifuni (Robert) and Robert Kolka(Cindy) and many, many nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
Betty had an infectious laugh that could be heard in any group of people. She loved family gatherings and was blessed to have so many people who loved her. She was kind and patient (most days) and had an Irish temper to match her kindness. She loved all things peaceful, the beach, the lake, the Grand Canyon. Betty loved cruising around in their classic cars with her husband Mike and camping anywhere as long as the weather was warm. If she wasn’t at the beach you could find her at the racetrack chewing on peppermint candies. Her job as a “stay at home grandma” was the highlight of her life and she told anyone who would listen that she had the best job in the world. She loved playing board games and making up words to songs. She made square pancakes in round pans and laughed hysterically. She made an imprint on the lives of everyone who met her and to all who called her “mom” and “grandma Betty”. She had the gift of gab and made friends wherever she went. She taught us how to laugh at ourselves(and each other), sing out loud (even if you don’t know the words) and hold on to those you love with all your heart. The only thing she didn’t teach us was how to live without her.
We are so thankful to everyone who offered their love and support throughout her illness. Special thanks to Maureen Cifuni, “her nurse”, sister and friend and her doctors at Sloan Memorial Hospital, Dr. Jasmeet Singh and her nurse, Sheryl Scott.
A memorial service celebrating Betty’s life will be held Monday, October 12, 2020, from 2-5 PM at the Millspaugh Funeral Home, 22 Bank St., Walden, NY 12586.
Funeral services will follow at 5 PM at the funeral home.
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