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Kate Elizabeth Humphrey

On Wednesday, September 14, 2022, Kate Elizabeth Humphrey, joyful, talented, and courageous, passed away peacefully at home in Winters, CA, surrounded by those who loved her most. She was 54.

Kate was born on June 6, 1968 in Springfield, IL, to Roger and Constance Humphrey. After graduating from Springfield Southeast High School in 1986, she received her Bachelor’s degree in Art from Arizona State University in 1992, and earned her MFA from Michigan’s esteemed Cranbrook Academy of Art in 1994. Upon her return to Arizona in 1996, Kate met her future husband Mark while working at a Borders Bookstore. Clad in practical khaki and a questionable coupling of socks with Birkenstocks, Kate was initially oblivious to her coworker’s romantic endeavors. Mark’s patience paid off and the pair were married on May 27, 2000, in a rain-soaked outdoor ceremony. They became a family of three, welcoming son Everett on March 12, 2009. 

A creative spirit and exceptional educator, Kate began teaching art at Winters High School in 2007. Her classroom was a wellspring for imagination and a sanctuary for students seeking acceptance and encouragement. Kate’s inspiration and mentorship is evidenced throughout the Winters community in the Winters Participation Gallery historical mural projects she helped to coordinate. 

No day passed unappreciated by Kate. She woke early to walk, swim, or enjoy a backyard cup of coffee, rising with the sun. If she wasn’t teaching, she was creating. Throwing pottery, designing jewelry, drawing, and painting were just a few of her preferred pastimes. Kate also loved to join the cheering section at each of her son’s baseball games. An avid music lover and concert goer, Kate’s favorite performers included Luce, Joni Mitchell, Tears for Fears, Indigo Girls, Boston, James Taylor, and Rufus Wainwright. 

Kate was preceded in death by her parents Roger and Constance. She is survived by her devoted husband Mark, and her loving son, Everett. Kate also leaves behind siblings Bridget, Robin, and Louis (and Diana), niece Aleta, nephew Yari, cousin Clifford (and Catherine) Hathaway, cousin John Hathaway, cousins Dan, Megan, and Sharon Dwyer, and parents-in-law James and Ceresa Beason. 

Celebration of life gatherings will be held in Winters, California, on October 8 at the Winters Community Center, and in Springfield, Illinois, on November 5 at the Washington Park Botanical Gardens. 


A candle was lit in memory of Kate Humphrey

Linda Whiting Oct 2 2022 11:10 AM

A candle was lit in memory of Kate Humphrey

Adriana Ruiz Sep 30 2022 11:15 AM

Kate was an amazing friend. She made me feel very welcomed at WHS. She was always ready to listen and lend a helping hand. I always loved how her room was a place of acceptance for students and staff, a place where people wanted to be. I will carry that bit with me and try to offer the same to my students. She had a way of leaving a little bit of her essence in the people she met. I am forever grateful that I had a chance to get to know Kate over the last year and a half and to experience “interesting” events outside of our comfort zone together.
I offer my sincerest condolences to her family, friends, colleagues, and students. Kate will be missed by all who knew and loved her.

Patricia Sep 28 2022 7:11 PM

I'm so sorry for your loss Mark. Thank you for sharing this beautiful memory of your wife. Our hearts are with you and your family.

Madelyn Sep 28 2022 10:43 AM

Prayers for you and your family. But the absolute biggest THANK YOU! because you were the inspiration and push for so many students, with heavy hearts you will be missed.

Ryen Sep 27 2022 9:58 PM

A candle was lit in memory of Kate Humphrey

Elaine, Edward and Mo Palmer. We will miss her cheering Everett on at the games. Sep 27 2022 4:55 PM

Our sincere heartfelt sympathy to you, the Beason family in the passing of Kate Elizabeth!

Craig & Cheryl Klepper Sep 27 2022 1:09 PM

A candle was lit in memory of Kate Humphrey

Dianne Sep 27 2022 10:20 AM

Ms.Humphrey was the best teacher at the winters high school , she was the nicest teacher i’ve ever had , she was always so happy & had the best attitude. She is one of those people you’ll remember forever , i’m so grateful for having her as a teacher & getting to know her.

Sep 26 2022 11:26 PM

Kate was one of my dearest friends. She provided me light through the dark and never hesitated to lend a helping hand. I could go to her with any problem and we would "stomp" them out on walks along Moody Slough. One day, as we walked back home, we collected "weeds" and other botanicals for her art students to draw. While I know a few things about plants, Kate taught me to see the beauty in the patterns and textures and colors of the plants. I think of this every time I go out there. I could write pages but I won't. Like many have said before, Kate has left an indelible and beautiful mark upon my heart. I love her immensely.

Kari Sep 26 2022 8:41 PM

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