Karen Ann Bivens passed away surrounded by loved ones on August 13, 2022, at the age of 77, or as she said, "seventy-f**king-seven". As the oldest of nine siblings, she was known for her caring nature and huge heart. She was a beloved sister, daughter, mother, grandmother, partner, and friend who brought exuberance and positivity to all who knew her. Karen lived life on her own terms and loved fast cars, playing the drums in a classic rock band, taking in stray cats, and making art. She had a remarkable ability to always see the best in everyone, and her empathy for others knew no bounds. She was truly one of a kind, applying herself to hobbies such as drag racing, becoming a registered hypnotist, and becoming an ordained minister. As a testament to her outlook on life, Karen requested that 'I Hope You Dance' be played at her funeral: "And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance, I hope you dance."
As a creative person who truly loved life, Karen was never lacking inspiration. She marched to the beat of her own drum and applied that in her creativity. From painting shoes and her front steps in pastel rainbow colors, to walking into a museum and asking for her art to be displayed, she loved sharing her passion for creative expression with the world. She was fearless, never allowing anyone to tell her how to live or how to create. She inspired freedom in everyone around her and left her creative spirit with those who were lucky enough to know her.
Karen also considered herself a member of the IVGLDSW (Intelligent, Very Good Looking, Damn Smart Woman) Society and believed that "Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand (or cheesecake), wine in the other, body thoroughly used up and totally worn out, and screaming WHOO HOO, WHAT A RIDE!!!" All who knew Karen know that she embodied that outlook to the fullest.
Preceded in death by her father Ralph Brown, Karen is survived by her beloved partner Denny Coyle and his family who also became hers, Alec Coyle, Erin (Michael) Klauser, Allison (Jake) Veon, and Jillian Klauser; mother Florence "Flo" Brown; siblings David (Kathy) Brown, Richard (Beth) Brown, Dale (Marilyn) Brown, Lolly Brown, Shelly (Joe) Criss, Duvon (Debbi) Brown, Ronald (Joann) Brown, and Julie (Marv) Brown; children Sharon (Bill) Braham, Dean (Camille) Bivens, and Fred (McKenzie) Heberling; grandchildren Cassie Bivens, Boyce Bivens, Jayden Heberling, Landon Heberling, and Lincoln Heberling; many nieces and nephews, countless friends who she considered family, and much-loved cat George. She will be dearly missed by all who knew her.
A celebration of life and luncheon will be held for loved ones Sunday, August 28, 2:00pm at Gather at the Lakes, 4315 Manchester Rd. New Franklin, Ohio 44319. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the Summit County Humane Society.