Kathlyn Ailene Austin, best known as Kaky, passed away Thursday, July 10, with her four daughters and husband Jack by her side. Kaky was born January 30, 1929, in Eagle Rock, Calif. She grew up in the Los Angeles area where she raised her family until her husband’s business took them to the rural area of Fallbrook, Calif.
Kaky was an energetic and exuberant mother, sister and wife, involving herself in the community, schools, and her children’s after-school activities. Kaky was the Girl Scout leader, the PTA president, and the lead singer in every school fundraiser. She was the first to volunteer when the need arose, and was always there for her children.
Kathlyn married Richard S. Spanjian in 1949 and raised four daughters and one son. The couple later divorced. Kaky married her second husband, Jack Austin, in 1984 and settled in the Danish town of Solvang, Calif., nestled in the beautiful rolling hills of the Santa Ynez Valley.
Kaky was an avid gardener and surrounded herself with flowers. She loved to travel and spent many happy years RVing with Jack. She was also an avid member of her hiking group with whom she explored the picturesque landscapes of the area. Kaky even hiked the Himalayas at age 70.
Kaky and Jack moved to the Rogue Valley Manor in Medford, Ore., in 2004, where several of their friends from the Santa Ynez area had settled. Her life was filled with her love of family and friends.
Kaky is survived by her spouse, Jack Austin; her four daughters, Charlee Smith and her husband Bruce of Boise, Idaho; Kristin Spanjian and her husband Ray Gilbertson of Billings, Mont.; Beth Stewart of Union, Ore.; Julie Peha and her husband Larry of Hermosa Beach, Calif.; her stepdaughter, Ellen Johnson, and her husband Scott of Newport Coast, Calif.; her stepson, Jack Austin, Jr. of Los Angeles; and her dear friend, Maria Soghomonian. She is also survived by her seven grandchildren, Sarkis, Michael and Jacqueline Peha; Madeleine Smith; Kate, Brooke and Chase Stewart; and her step-grandchild Jeremy Johnson.
She was preceded in death by her son, Sarkis, in 1977; her sister, Shirley Kratka; her brother, Charles Kratka; and her parents, Charles and Charlotte Kratka.