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Karen Mulherin Ruddy

February 1, 2023


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Karen Mulherin Ruddy

February 1, 2023


Karen Mulherin Ruddy, 68, of Ocean Isle Beach, NC, formerly of Ashley and Forty Fort,

passed away on Wednesday, February 1, 2023, in Novant Medical Center, Wilmington, NC.


She was born in Wilkes-Barre, a daughter of the late Cornelius and Dolores Majikes Mulherin.  Karen was a graduate of Hanover Area High School, class of 1973.  She was formerly employed at Boden and Northrop in Ashley, the United Penn Bank in Ashley, by St. Leo’s Church, Ashley. Karen was later employed by Ruckno Construction in Forty Fort.


Karen was passionately devoted to her Catholic faith.  She taught CCD for many years at St. Leo’s Church in Ashley.  She was also a diehard fan of the New York Yankees and Notre Dame.


In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her most loving husband, Donald J. Ruddy in 2020, by her brother, John Mulherin, niece, Kayla Klepadlo, nephews Alexander Mulherin and Christian Mercadante, niece, Bridget Gigliotti.


Karen is survived by her sister, Constance Karpowich, Hanover Township and by her sister-in-law, Dottie Grogan and her husband, Dennis, White Field, NH.  Uncle Charles and Aunt Elizabeth Majikes, Ashley, Aunt by marriage Mrs. Carol Schultz Wilkes-Barre.   She is also survived by her loving nieces and nephews, including Mary Balbach and husband, Kurt, Jason Karpowich, Alysia Mulherin, Kelly Mercadante and husband, Joseph, John Paul Karpowich, Joseph Karpowich, Carrie Abbott and her husband, Chris, Joseph, Carrie, Brianna and John Balbach, Amanda Balbach and Liam Nicely, Ashely Karpowich and Ryan Marello, De Anna, Patrick and Kinsley Garrison, Sarah and Michelle Karpowich, Christina, Jenna, Jeovanna, Anthony, Mark, Stephanie, Alexander, Alexis Mercadante. Cousins, Robert and Maria Cerwonka, Brian and Sharon Lavan. William and Doreen Lavan, Charles and Mary Majikes, Paul and Annie Majikes, John and Kim Majikes, Matthew and Linda Majikes.


John, being with her during her passing meant more to her and the rest of the family than you’ll ever know.


Special thanks to Karen’s friends and neighbors who have been there for her since the death of her husband.  Theresa and Jeff, Vicki and Frank, Maria and Gene and most especially to Sharon and Jack.  Sharon, your dedication to Karen and your help throughout this incredibly difficult time for her family will never be forgotten.


Funeral services will be held on Friday at 9 AM from the Nat & Gawlas Funeral Home, 89 Park Avenue, Wilkes-Barre, with a Mass of Christian Burial to follow at 9:30 AM in Our Lady of Fatima Parish at St. Mary’s Church of the Immaculate Conception, 134 S. Washington Street, Wilkes-Barre. Interment will be in St. Mary’s Cemetery, Hanover Township.


A visitation for family and friends will be held on Thursday from 6-8 PM at the funeral home.


Donations may be made to the American Heart Association or the American Lung Association.


Condolences may be sent by visiting Karen’s obituary at