Obituary of Fred Kareta, Jr.
Westfield, Frederick S. Kareta, Jr., 72, died suddenly on June 14, 2020 at his home. He was born on May 4, 1948 in Holyoke and was the son of Frederick and Josephine (Strzempko) Kareta. He was educated at Mater Dolorosa School and Holyoke Catholic before furthering his education at STCC and UMASS. He completed his Master's Degree in Chemical/Mechanical Engineering at Western New England College. He worked in the field for a variety of companies, including Dearborn, Metro Group and WR Grace. He served in the US Air Force prior to his graduation. He was a communicant of St. Jerome Church in Holyoke and was a member of the Holyoke Knights of Columbus Council 90, the Chicopee Elks No. 1849 and the American Legion Post 325. He will be deeply missed by his wife Kathryn (Wise) of 36 years, along with his daughter Dr. Kerry Kareta and her fiance Dr. Amir Fakhrzadeh of NJ. He also leaves a sister Connie (Roger) Barre of Belville, IL, his brother in laws Edward Wise of Hatfield, Ralph Wise and wife Meredith of S. Hadley, Dale Wise of Agawam and many nieces and nephews. Besides his parents, he was predeceased by his son "Joe" Kareta in 2010 and sister Karen Kareta-Stevenson. A Funeral Mass will be held Saturday, June 20 at 11:00 a.m. at St. Jerome Church followed by burial with military honors in Mater Dolorosa Cemetery. A calling hour will precede the mass from 9:00 - 10:15 a.m. at the Beers & Story South Hadley Funeral Home, 646 Newton St, (Rte 116). Due to the current pandemic, please be mindful that masks are required, please practice social distancing and all are respectfully asked for no direct contact with the family. For those wishing to honor Fred's memory, please make donations in his memory to the Joe Kareta Scholarship Fund (c/o Westfield State Foundation, P.O. Box 1630, Westfield, MA 01086). For more information and online guestbook, please visit www.beersandstory.com.
The beautiful Eulogy shared at Fred's Mass by his beloved daughter, Kerry Kareta
"Bear with me as I try to get through this, my friend Emily is here with me in case I need her. I want to thank everyone who travelled to be here, especially given the circumstances in the world today. It means a lot.
My dad was a lot of things. He was generous and kind, he was stubborn and opinionated. He certainly had a way with words. He loved politics and never passed up the chance to tell you about his views, even if you didn’t want to hear them.
He was late to everything to the point my mom would say “dad is going to be late for his own funeral”— I’m glad we were able to get him here on time today.
He was extremely handy, whether it be fixing the cars or the pool pump, he somehow knew how to do it all.. even if it was with mismatched, ancient parts that Jamie and Amir have been lucky enough to discover this week while helping with the pool. He treated my friends like family, taking them out to Pics, JP’s or Longhorn whenever I was home visiting. Emily, we know my dad is still mad at you for ordering chicken at a steakhouse because he reminded us every time we were all out for dinner.
But of all the things my dad was, we can all agree that he was an amazing father. From the countless hours coaching me and my brother on the basketball court and baseball field, to the long nights helping with our math homework, until he realized he forgot how to do AP Algebra, he was always there for me and Joe. He never missed an opportunity to celebrate our accomplishments and I know how proud of us he was. Even if it wasn’t something he said every day, anyone that knew my dad has heard about Joe’s free throw record and his shutout games on the baseball mound and heard about me winning the MIT State Science Fair and graduating in the top ten of my class.
When Joe passed away, my dad became less subtle about how proud he was of me and Joe. His stories of Joe became a daily conversation and as for me, my dad’s endless BU Dental School apparel helped him strike up many conversations about me becoming a dentist. He changed the tires on my car, filed my taxes, helped me with my loans, the list goes on and on of all the things my dad did for me. Dad, you were the best father any daughter or son could ask for, and Joe and I were so lucky to have you.
My mom and I are sad beyond words. The loss and sadness my dad, mom, and I have had to go through is indescribable, but we have found strength in each other throughout the years. It’s going to be extremely hard for my mom and I to start this next chapter without my dad. We’ve lost Joe and my Cioci Karen and putting the pieces back together after their passing has not been easy but now we have to find a way to do it all over again. I know my dad is with Joe and Cioc and we all must find comfort knowing they are all together at peace. Dad… Mom, Joe and I love you beyond words. Life has been so hard without Joe and it’s now going to be so much harder without you. Mom and I love and miss you and will think about you everyday. Give Joe and Cioc a big hug for us."To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Fred Kareta, Jr., please visit Tribute Store