Kathlyn Ruth Gay, of Zion, Illinois, died in New Port Richey, Florida on July 26, 2022. She was 92.
She was born on March 4th, 1930, in Zion, IL., to Kenneth and Beatrice McGarrahan. Kathlyn spent her earlier years in Zion before marrying Arthur Gay (1925-2012) in 1948. They lived in Elkhart, Indiana, Ventura, California and New Port Richey, Florida.
They were married for over 64 years.
Kathlyn is survived by her younger brother, John Richard McGarrahan, her sons, Martin Gay, Douglas Gay, and daughter, Karen Hamilton, as well as her grandchild, Nissa Gay. She was preceded in death by brothers, Kenneth McGarrahan Jr. and James McGarrahan.
Kathlyn had several careers but her one true constant was writing. She began professionally writing in 1957 and went on to have 120 published books. Her writing covered controversial and poignant subjects from politics, race, religion, equality, justice,
human behavior, and global-environmental topics. She enjoyed traveling nationally and internationally by cars, trains, planes, and ships. She wrote extensively about the excursions she took with Arthur, while her photo collections of each trip were
organized perfectly. She enjoyed a good Martini with her husband and friends while snacking on an assortment of goodies as part of their nightly routine of gathering, enjoying life, and of course…debating.
Kathlyn was a pioneer and spoke out on issues that many would be scared to address. She was ahead of her time, passionate, feisty, and fiercely outspoken. She will be dearly missed, and her memory will live on in those who loved her so. In honor of
Kathlyn Gay, plant a tree, buy a book, or donate to your favorite non-profit. She would be proud.
"Kathlyn Gay is the author of more than 100 books, including young
adult books, encyclopedias, teacher manuals and portions of textbooks.
Most of her work focuses on social and environmental issues, culture,
history, and communication. In 1983, her book Acid Rain was selected
as an 'Outstanding Book' by the National Council for Social Studies
and National Science Teachers' Association. Silent Killers received
the same award in 1988. Global Garbage: International Trade in Toxic
Waste was chosen as a Notable Book for Young People in 1993. In recent
years, Kathlyn Gay has collaborated with family members, sons Martin
and Douglas Gay and daughter Karen Hamilton, on various books."