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Oct. 14, 1930-Nov. 16, 2017 

Cathy was born in Washington, D.C., to Joseph and Elizabeth Tortorice. Until the age of 9 Cathy was raised by her beloved grandmother, Margaret Fenton. Ilene Fenton Schneider and her husband Harvey, Cathy’s aunt and uncle, took Cathy into their home and raised her as their own. Cathy was a member of St. Patrick’s Catholic Church of Washington, D.C., and graduated from its all-girl high school in 1948.

She began her career with the federal government as one of the Pentagon Girls. Her career continued at Naval Avionics and Fort Benjamin Harrison in Indianapolis, Indiana. where she and her 5 children resided for many years. Cathy retired a GS-12 Contract Specialist from Fort Eustis in Newport News in 1990. For her excellent service over the years, Cathy received many letters of commendation, promotions and bonuses.

Cathy was a member of Mathews Baptist Church of Hudgins, Virginia. She enjoyed singing in the church choir, teaching Sunday school, and presiding over VBS for many years. Her main joy in life was her volunteer work to help the elderly and singing for our Lord. She was a member of the traveling singing group, The Silvertones, that visited numerous places and was faithful in her weekly visits singing and visiting at Mathews Nursing Home. She also enjoyed delivering Meals on Wheels, loved being an avid gardener of flowers, and was active in the Virginia Republican Party, one of the highlights being that she met and shook the hand of George W. Bush.

Later in life Cathy moved to Gloucester, where she joined St. Therese Catholic Church.

A special thank you to Cheryl Davis for her years of faithful visitation and friendship to our mother. Cathy will be forever loved in the hearts of her 5 adult children: Tony Nelson and family of Poquoson, Virginia; Beth Nelson and family of Bloomington, Indiana; Susie Nelson Dunaway and family of Mathews; Meg Nelson Royals and family of Mathews, and Mary Liggins Countiss and family of Gloucester; 18 grandchildren, and 14 great-grandchildren. Cathy’s faith and love for Jesus Christ is what sustained her throughout the many trials of her life. Though our mother is greatly missed, God’s promise that we shall meet again is what continues to carry her family through this difficult time.

The family would like to thank Walter Reed Convalescent Home and Hospice of Virginia for the care and attention given to our mother. A tribute to Cathy’s life by her family and friends will be announced at a later date.

Memorial donations to honor Cathy can be made to Mathews Meals on Wheels or to the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering.

Andrews Funeral Home & Crematory is in charge of arrangements.