Have you ever noticed there are certain events, items or people, that are synonymous with towns all around the area, and for that fact, all around our country? Cities have become associated with a “particular” entity and will forever be tied to it. For instance, with the mention of the Golden Lamb restaurant, people immediately think of the city of Lebanon, or The Wooden Shoe and Minster comes to mind. Closer to home, a reference to Coldwater Café or Sam & Ethel’s and people think of Tipp City. With events, it’s the same. We have all become familiar with the “Troy” Strawberry Festival, the “Bradford” Pumpkin Festival and our own “Tipp City” Mum Festival.
This kind of association, even more importantly, applies to those notable individuals who have helped bring a city to prominence. In fact, no matter where you travel, many cities even boast on signs at the entrance of their community of renowned personalities who once called that city home. Some really famous names quickly come to mind such as the Wright Brothers and their association with the city of Dayton, Neil Armstrong with Wapakoneta or Annie Oakley and the city of Greenville. Regardless of how well these people are known, they define a community and make it what it is. There’s one such name who helped make Tipp City what it is today and whom people still fondly remember. That person was a great advocate for Tipp City. Her name is Katherine Anne Greer Lobo, or whom most called “Kitty”.
Kitty grew up as a lively young girl in Paris, KY – a place affectionately known as bluegrass country. Among the rolling meadows and sunny skies, she lived there with her parents and four brothers. Kitty was fond of her roots and enjoyed being out in the big countryside. The father of her childhood best friend was big into thoroughbred racing and farming, and the farm soon became part of Kitty’s life.
Fast forward, to January 24, 1970, Kitty married Dave Lobo and then in 1977, the family moved to Tipp City. It was here where Tracy, Erin, and David, Kitty’s three children, helped round out the family. Kitty was attracted to Tipp City because of the high-quality schools, the love of tree-lined streets, and the thought of being part of a small community. Living in an old house with big stairs and sloped ceiling bedrooms, situated a block away from Broadway Elementary with a great playground, was a perfect setting for the Lobo family. This felt like the center of things in small-town America.
Kitty’s main focus was her family and the rearing of her children. She had a passion for her children doing their best and loved being a mother. She was genuinely interested in connecting with all children on a personal level. This led her to open her home as a daycare center where she could spend quality time with not only her children but other children in the community. She was an inspiration throughout our town.
Kitty’s husband, Dave, was an insurance broker, and family was important to him as well. He made it a priority to be home by 5:30 every day so he could be involved in family activities. As one might suspect, family was the central focal point for the Lobos. Drew Eberle, a family friend and Tippecanoe alumnus, summed it up well by saying: “She was so amazing with young people that she made them [me] feel like we had something important to say. I try to listen to my students today with the same kind of kindness and enthusiasm which Kitty possessed.” That’s the way Kitty treated all with whom she came in contact.
As her children grew and expanded in community activities, Kitty felt the desire to be just as involved in the community as when her children were young. After a stint writing a column for the Dayton Daily News, she heard about the Communications Coordinator for Tipp City Schools position. The rest is history as the fit was perfect and it added that “community” part back into Kitty’s life.
Kitty was proud to work with Tipp City Schools and loved sharing her vision of the school district within the community. Her favorite part of the job was interacting with students. She was inspired by seeing young people engrossed in their passions.
Kitty held an English degree from Wright State University, and words, ideas, and books gave her much joy. Even late into the evenings, she nourished her soul by staying up late reading. Kitty’s daughter, Tracy, reflects on a quote from Maya Angelou, which summed up one of her mother’s many qualities: “’I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.’ Kitty had a heart for people, was known for her kindness and is remembered as someone who made them feel seen, valued, and loved.”
With Kitty’s passing, the family knew they needed to give back to the community in a way that would honor their mother. One such way was the establishment of The Katherine G. Lobo Memorial Scholarship Fund. This fund is directed toward Tippecanoe High School graduating seniors who plan on attending a 4-year college or university, centered with Kitty’s ideologies in mind. These beliefs, which are the impetus in students’ lives today, push all to be their best, promote engagement throughout the community, and provide encouragement by things that are deeply meaningful. This is exactly what Kitty would have wanted.
Tara Dixon Engle, editor of the Tippecanoe Gazette at the time of Kitty’s passing, wrote these words in tribute. “A talented Communications Coordinator of the Tippecanoe School System, Kitty’s presence in the schools helped to forge and promote the district’s reputation for excellence. Her ready smile and gentle approach were familiar and comforting to students, teachers, and parents alike — and her gift with the written word was both impressive and inspiring.”
Kitty is remembered for her love and care for others and dedication to serving Tipp City Schools and the community. So, the next time you stroll through town, be grateful for Kitty’s contribution while remembering the legacy each of us are leaving. Whether it’s through helping fund an endowment, being involved in activities or boards to support our city, or simply eating at a local diner, we’re all part of building a stronger and more vibrant small town community whether we realize it or not. Just ask any of Kitty’s children.
Thanks to Tipp City Foundation Board Member, Bruce McKenzie, for crafting this lovely tribute to Kitty Lobo!
MAKE A DIFFERENCE
The Tipp City Foundation is a member fund of The Troy Foundation. You can make a difference with your dollars in our community by:
- Donating online here.
- Making your check payable to the Tipp City Foundation and mail to P.O. Box 626, Tipp City, OH 45371.
- Setting up a fund or legacy plan by contacting Heather Bailey at (937) 528-2482.
We’d love to stay in touch. Stay connected with the Tipp City Foundation by:
THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS
All marketing activities of the Foundation is 100% underwritten by generous sponsors. Please contact us at email@example.com for information on how your business or organization can become our partner in philanthropy.
- Silver Sponsor – Thrivent Financial (Matt Buehrer)
- Bronze Sponsors – Advanced Machinery Companies; Dunaway Family Foundation; Dungan & LeFevre; Ever-Green Turf & Landscape; Gibson Law Offices; Monroe Federal Savings and Loan; New Carlisle Federal Savings Bank; Pickrel, Schaeffer and Ebeling; Unity National Bank
- Friend Sponsors – Captor Corp.; Edward Jones (Neil Nehring); Frings & Bayliff Funeral Home; Minster Bank; RSM US; Turnstone Financial; US Bank
- Media Sponsor – Tippecanoe Gazette
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