Kathleen Ann Buchanan



Memorial Contributions: 

Maternal Wellness Program 


Kathleen Ann (Carrothers) Buchanan, 80, of Grand Rapids, MI, passed away peacefully to be with her Lord and Savior on October 22, 2023.

Kathleen “Kathy” was born on January 26, 1943, to Frank and Mary (Daniels) Carrothers in Grand Rapids, MI. Kathy was a devoted wife, mother, grandmother, and friend who put others before herself in both her personal and professional life.

She was a devout Catholic and a parishioner of St. Robert of Newminster Catholic Church in Ada, MI. She helped form a guitar group in the late 1970s, which played at the Saturday night Mass at St Robert of Newminster for over 20 years resulting in some of her most cherished friendships.

Kathy is survived by her husband of 51 years, William; four children: Molly (Kirk) Bierens of Grand Rapids, MI, Maribeth (Christopher) Warloe of Rockford, MI, William Buchanan II of Grandville, MI, Michael (Lynnelle) Buchanan of Belmont, MI; nine grandchildren: Elizabeth Bierens, Eleanor Bierens, Alexis Bierens, Ari Bierens, Drew Buchanan, Alaina Warloe, Isla Buchanan, Lucas Buchanan and Brooks Warloe; sister: Mary (Mark) Wood of Canadian Lakes, MI. She is also survived by her “adopted” family, Neptali, Sandra, Joshua and Sebastian Salgado Sosa of Grand Rapids, MI. She was preceded in death by her infant son Martin Buchanan, her parents, Frank and Mary Carrothers and infant grandsons William and Ford Buchanan.

Kathleen graduated from Marywood Academy in 1961. She went on to study at Mercy Central School of Nursing. After obtaining her Registered Nursing license in 1963, she started her first job at St. Mary’s Hospital, kickstarting a career that spanned 60 years as an obstetrics nurse. She worked as a labor and delivery nurse early in her career but spent most of her time in postpartum until she retired in 2021. With her loving, kind and gentle approach, Kathy set the gold standard for providing patient centered care. Even after retirement she continued to be a champion for women’s mental wellbeing by leading support groups and continuing her work at Grand Rapids Women’s Health. She was a true advocate for moms suffering from postpartum depression and has been a driving force in increasing awareness of PMAD (perinatal mood and anxiety disorders) and its impact on families.

Kathy was recognized throughout her career with numerous accolades and awards including, MCSN Alumni Nursing Excellence Award, MomsBloom Lifetime Achievement Award for Advocacy, finalist in Grand Rapids Magazine’s Nursing Entrepreneur of the Year Award, and several Daisy Award nominations. She was a co-founder and is on the Board of Directors of the Maternal Wellness Program, a non-profit that provides resources and supports women and families through pregnancy, postpartum, and loss during pregnancy or after birth.

More importantly, Kathy lived her life with compassion through small acts of kindness every day, leaving a profound impact on so many. She deeply cared about her family, friends and “her Moms” and was considered a blessing to this community.

Visitation will be held at O’Brien-Eggebeen-Gerst Chapel, 3980 Cascade Rd SE, Grand Rapids, MI on Thursday, November 2, 2023, beginning with the Rosary at 5:30pm and visitation 6-8pm. Mass of  Christian Burial will be held at 11:00 am Friday, November 3, 2023, at St. Robert of Newminster Catholic Church, 6477 Ada Drive, Ada, MI with visitation one-hour prior. Luncheon (to immediately follow) at the church. A private graveside service will be held for the family following the luncheon.

 In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Maternal Wellness Program ( https://maternalwellnessprogram.org/donate )

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14 Responses

  1. My dear and beloved friend,
    I miss you so very much and know that it’s not going to be the same without you, Kathy.
    My sincerest condolences and love to Bill and the entire Buchanan family.
    Love, Cindy Coviak

  2. Kathy you are a true angel and will be greatly missed. You took on my case no questions asked and made me a better Mom. I could not have asked for a better person to help me get on the right track with my postpartum depression.

  3. Kathy was such an amazing person and I am so grateful and honored to have met her. The impact that she’s made in so many postpartum mother’s lives, as well as my own, will continue to span generations.
    I love you, Kathy! Forever my January 26th birthday sister. Hugs and love to your family and all of “your Moms”.

  4. I am truly sad to see the passing of such a wonderful woman. I am not sure I would have made it through my postpartum period without Kathy. The Grand Rapids area was blessed to have such an amazing person. My heartfelt condolences to the Buchanan Family.

  5. To one of my second moms and friend in so many ways, I will miss you so much! I know you will continue to guide and watch over so many of us from above, and that is what will you keep you alive in our hearts!
    Our late night conversations sailing the seas on Irish cruises, Bahama vacations, Christmas parties, and various celebrations will always be memories I cherish. You have always been a listening ear with welcoming arms that gave comfort and security during hard times. Your patience and kindness to all is a characteristic I continue to work on and strive to be better at! You always made it look so easy no matter what the circumstance. I don’t think I ever remember you being angry … I only remember the cute eye roll, shoulder shrug and quick laugh that made any stressful situation seem minimal and unimportant! I know you are at peace and pain free which makes this only slightly easier on the rest of us here. I know I speak for many when I say you will be missed greatly and always remembered !!

    My condolences to the Buchanan family. Your wife, mom and grandma was an amazing person!!! She lives on in all of you!

  6. God has a special person with Him now. Love and prayers to Bill & family. So sorry for your lose.

  7. Prayers to all who loved her most–may precious memories comfort & guide you. Our world is certainly less bright without Kathy’s shining light. Her quiet, loving support made a tremendous difference in the lives of so many of us postpartum moms… I pray a handoff was made and someone similar is carrying the torch forward–& I know Kathy would be their biggest cheerleader! ='( <3

  8. Kathy reached out to me after losing my son at 32 weeks. She helped me navigate one of the most difficult times in my life. Even after some time had passed she continued to reach out each time she found out I had suffered another loss. Her compassion and outreach are one of the reasons I made it through those hard times. My heart goes out to her family and loved ones. She was a blessing to so many women. God certainly said “job well done my faithful servant” when she entered heaven. ❤️

  9. Kathy was an amazing woman! Kathy and my mom, Mary, were friends from high school and regularly met up with the Marywood “gang”. She helped me so much with my mom’s passing. I adored her. She always had a bright smile, encouraging words, and kind heart. I will miss her dearly. To her family, I’m so sorry for your loss.

  10. Words cannot express the void left in my life, and indeed in our world with Kathy’s passing. We are all enriched by having known her. She will be greatly missed.

  11. Kathy, Thank you for all you did for us Moms of the PMAD group. Your care, compassion and kindness was a beacon of hope in the darkest moments of my life.

  12. Kathy, I can’t thank you enough for all you did for the Daniels Family un Buenos Aires. Maria Josè, Larry Jr and Chan will always remember your hospitality every time we went up to Grand Rapids to visit your Mom (my second Mom) and especially the time we stayed at your home. We love you so very much and you will always be in our hearts.
    Love, Larry

  13. It was such an honor to work side by side with so many of our suffering moms. Your endless dedication and compassion was a great component to the healing of many. The legacy you have left behind is quite beautiful.

  14. Dear Beth and Chris: What a beautiful obituary and beautiful tributes to your mom. Rest in Peace, good and faithful servant. A life well lived. Love, Tracy Flanders

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