Kathleen Anne Madsen was born on June 2, 1955, in Moses Lake, Washington. She was the second of three girls born to John and Patricia Madsen. The family moved to various places in Washington until landing permanently in the town of Woodland.
Kathy was a popular and accomplished student, who served on many courts and as an honor student. After high school graduation in 1973, she went on to receive her degree in education from Western Washington University in Bellingham, where she was on the dean’s list. During college, she worked various jobs. She proved to be versatile, accomplished and excelled in anything she tried.
After graduating she went on to teach in both public and private schools. She settled in Deming where she created a family with her husband Dennis, her loving partner of 38 years. They led a full life, living in Haines, Alaska and Deming, and traveling the world together. Kathy was taken from us suddenly on June 23, 2022, at her home in Haines. The world is a far emptier place without her.
Kathy had a smile that could light up a room. She had an unmatched sense of humor, a steadfast loyalty to friends and family and a kind-hearted love of dogs. Her spirit will always be walking with them on the path to the river. One of her countless talents was an unbelievable ability to instantly compose a song that captured any moment perfectly. Her friendships were deep and long lasting.
Her long marriage to Dennis was an important part of her life. Their children, Kaegan and Mikalea, were her pride and joy. She loved every minute of being their mother. She was especially dedicated to her family. She was overjoyed to welcome Mika’s husband, Erik Lembke, into the family.
Kathy was active in both of her communities. She loved children or “little ones” as she called them. She was adored by them as well, and her games and songs, especially collaborative play and community theater, will be remembered for generations. She took joy in the outdoors, hiking, gardening and just being present.
Kathy is greatly missed by her husband Dennis Gudmundson, son Kaegan Gudmundson, daughter Mikalea Gudmundson and son-in-law Erik Lembke, sister Susan Vaughan and brother-in-law George Vaughan, nephew Micah Wilkerson, brother and sister-in-law Bob Gudmundson and Melinda Sweet, brother-in-law Tony Gudmundson, niece and nephews, multiple great-nieces and nephews and many heartbroken friends.
A memorial will be set in Washington at a later date when the family returns from Alaska.