Karen Judith Dachille

Karen Judith Dachille, also known as Suzie, age 76, suddenly passed away in hospice care peacefully on January 30, 2023, at Spectrum Health Meijer Heart Center in Grand Rapids, MI. Loving mother of Jennifer (Michael) Anderson, Jan (Katerina) Pavelek, and Natalie (Mark) Pavelek-Bellman. Proud Mema of Gavin and Cooper Anderson, and Henry Pavelek. Karen is also survived by her brother, John (Cindy) Zeppa, and sister, Lynnette D’Achille Shureb, her nieces, Lea Crook, Emily Liburdi, Amy Crabtree, Lauren and Erica Zeppa, and her loving caregiver, Jordan Gott, along with many other family and friends. Karen is preceded in death by her mother and step-father, Antoinette and Henry Zeppa, her father, Raymond DaChille, and her sister, Christine Liburdi. 

Karen was a gifted watercolor artist during her adult life and had a gift of creating wonderfully meaningful art pieces that she loved sharing with her family and friends. She loved teaching art to others and spent many hours teaching at her children’s school during their younger years. Karen loved animals and over her many years had several pets she loved, both cats and dogs, that she looked forward to seeing in her afterlife. Some of her favorite hobbies included gardening, creating perennial flower beds, reading, cooking delicious Italian food and other food creations, and keeping up with current events. She had a huge heart and was a strong proponent for peace around the world and humanitarian efforts and was passionate about fair treatment for others. Karen loved watching sports, especially her hometown’s baseball, football, and ice hockey teams. She grew up in Detroit, MI, and previously graduated from Osborn High School and took some college courses at Wayne State University. Karen loved spending her younger adult years going to various landmarks and events in Detroit and Hamtramck, MI. Some of her favorite locations to visit with her children and family were the Detroit Institute of Arts, Belle Isle, Bob-Lo Island, and Polish Village. She loved spending time on the water, at the beach, and sailing on the Great Lakes. Karen was passionate about racing sailboats on the Detroit River, Lake Huron, and Lake St. Clair. She is described by her family as an intelligent and witty person, she loved to laugh, loved socializing with family and friends, and enjoyed imparting her knowledge of gardening and cooking to her family. 

Anyone who knew Karen appreciated her dry humor, wit, creativity, and sarcasm. She loved music, especially classic 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s music such as Rod Stewart, Beatles, Cat Stevens, and Paul Simon. Karen’s all-time favorite song is Kodachrome by Paul Simon.

Later in life, Karen developed Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and lived with this disease for the last 20 years of her life. She was a huge supporter of MS research and awareness. Even though she had struggles with MS symptoms she lived a full and independent life. During her last week of life, Karen was faced with making a brave decision to enter hospice care after a medical setback and was able to share her final wishes with her family for comfort and peace.

One of Karen’s final wishes was a summer celebration of life with her family and friends. Details will be shared later.

To honor Karen’s wishes, cremation has taken place. Expressions of sympathy may be shared on Karen’s tribute wall at detroitcremationsociety.com. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in Karen’s memory to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society (www.nationalmssociety.org/donate) and Michigan Humane Society (www.michiganhumane.org/tributes).

Karen’s obituary was written by her loving family.


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4 Condolences

  1. Tiffany and Ken Belford on February 2, 2023 at 3:07 pm

    Sending love and prayers of peace and comfort to you all. Karen will be remembered for her kindness and love for her family.

  2. LYNNETTE Dachille on February 2, 2023 at 4:39 pm

    Suzy was my sister I will miss her earthly presence but not her spirit. The times we would drive down woodward when she got her license to go to Teds in Birmingham. The dances we went to at Osborn in Detroit. The party she gave me for my sweet 16 birthday. Her boy friends who lost their lives in Viet Nam and the sadness. Running wild and free in Detroit! Riding our bikes from Van Dyke and 6 MILE TO BELL ISLE! YES! THAT WAS A LONG BIKE RIDE but my mom was not a helicopter paranoid mom she believed in letting us go out and have adventures like on Devils Night in Detroit causing minor mischief! No felonies ha! We had the same political positions for sure and we agreed on that 100% After all our grandfather was our hero he was in the 1937 sit-down strike at Dodge Main where the workers locked themselves in the plant for almost 3 weeks and formed the UNITED AUTO WORKERS began the growth of the middle class in the USA. We came from a family that was involved in our church and our city. I used to joke that we should have a turnstile at our house because people were always coming and going. Suzie had a gift for painting she loved to paint and she was gifted. Our mom named her Karen but my grandpa said he like the name suzy so he said he was going to call her SUZY! So being a kid I thought that was her name! I never called her Karen. Any way suzy the younger generation now don’t know what they missed being part of the 50’s and turbulent 60’s . We did not worry about getting slaughtered at school. I think there was only one fight at Osborn H.S. in Detroit in our 4 years there and it was a knife fight by of course so Italian! Well I could go on but THERE ARE NO WORDS THAT CAN EVER COMPLETELY DEFINE ANY HUMAN BEING PERFECTLY LIFE IS A DIVINE DESIGN.
    Go wing thy flight from Start to star as the universe spreads it’s flaming wall.
    Take all the treasures of all the spheres and multiply them through endless years.
    ONE MOMENT OF HEAVEN IS WORTH THEM ALL. Nothing destroys spirit and we are angelic spirits in form on earth and in heaven.

  3. Barbara Whitener on February 4, 2023 at 10:10 pm

    Prayers and peace to you, Karen and to all your extended family. ❤️

  4. Jordan Gott on February 4, 2023 at 11:51 pm

    Karen was a great person who will always have a special place in my heart. Love, peace, and grace to the family in their mourning.

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