Two Brilliant Stars Go Out Too Soon

Many readers of this blog will not know these names, but many will.  I am sick with shock and sadness at learning that Kate McClellan (incoming president of the ALSC, the arm of ALA that focuses on children’s services and, among many other things, the Newbery and Caldecott Awards) and her dear friend Kathy Krasniewicz were killed yesterday in Denver.

Two town women, longtime librarians for the Perrot Memorial Library in Old Greenwich, were killed en route to the Denver airport Wednesday morning when their cab was struck by a hit-and-run driver, police said.

The library’s head of youth services, Kathy Krasniewicz, 54, of Palmer Hill Road, Riverside, and former youth services director Kate McClelland, 71, of Dorchester Lane, Riverside, were killed in the accident, a library official said Wednesday night.

Rest of the article here.

I can’t yet process this news, but will say that these women were shining, shining, shining stars and it is hard to imagine this world without them.  I first got to know them attending the summer CLNE institutes and then at various NYC publishing events.  They were such V.I.Ps but always lovely and generous and remarkable women.

Just after the Monday press conference I ran into them and Kate and I together quelled about The Graveyard Book winning the Newbery. Kate went on to say she thought Coraline should have won its year too and I happily agreed with her.

My profound sympathies to all their family and friends.

What a loss. What else is there to say?



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8 responses to “Two Brilliant Stars Go Out Too Soon

  1. I, too, am absolutely stunned by this terrible news. What a loss for the entire children’s book community, for ALSC, and for their friends and families. While I didn’t know either Kate or Kathy well, I spent enough time with them to want more. It’s very sad.


  2. Nina

    Thank you for posting Monica. Kathy: always a smile; Kate: always an outfit; both: boundless energy and humor. I can’t bear this.


  3. Kate and Kathy were friends, colleagues, brilliant and beautiful, for decades. Kathy, with her ready smile and boundless enthusiasm, and Kate. Oh Kate. Kate had the most beautiful skin (and this for a woman a decade older than me) and wondrous clothes. She was small and round, and wore beautiful hand-painted jackets and jewelry that matched.

    She reviewed for Kirkus and for SLJ, she served on many committees (she was a Caldecott buddy of TheInfomancer), she read widely and with passionate enthusiasm, and she was as supportive of her colleagues as she could possibly be.

    I keep wanting to find more words, because they deserve them, but it is so hard. We will miss them so much. I will miss them so much.


  4. EM

    Oh, my God. This is awful news. I’m so sorry.


  5. Beth

    From someone in Denver, I am so sorry that this terrible accident had to happen. What a horrible thing to go through. I am sure these two ladies will always be remembered with much love.


  6. Iva Wilson

    I am stunned and saddened by this news. What a waste of young lives! I do not know Kathy, but she is a younger sister of my dear friend Anna Egert. I can not imagine how Anna feels…



  7. Gretchen & John Fox

    We were so sorry to hear this terrible news.
    We met Kathy and her family at various weddings and family celebrations at the Egerts. A senseless loss for the library community as well as those close to her.
    Our sympathy & thoughts are with the family.


  8. Pingback: Kate and Kathy « Heavy Medal: A Mock Newbery Blog

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