Karen Louise Rubb
November 13, 2023

Visitation Information

November 16 2023 - 11:00 am
Ralph Schugar Chapel, Inc., 5509 Centre Avenue, (Shadyside) Pittsburgh 15232

Funeral Information

November 16 2023 - 12:00 pm
Ralph Schugar Chapel, Inc. 5509 Centre Avenue, (Shadyside) Pittsburgh, 15232

KAREN LOUISE RUBB: Born Karen Judy and owning the important title of Nana to her grandchildren, died peacefully on Monday, November 13, 2023 after an extended battle with FTD (Frontotemporal Dementia). She was 71. 

Karen was born to Ray Judy and Mary Conroy of Duquesne, PA. The oldest of 5 children, Karen's instinct for protecting and nurturing others was evident early. So it was no surprise that her kindness and empathy would lead her into the field of nursing, attending St. Joseph's Hospital School of Nursing and Waynesburg University. 

Karen spent the early part of her career working in surgery and recovery at the Veterans Administration Hospital and Montefiore. In November, 1973, an elderly woman came into her care for cancer treatment. Karen had of course worked with such patients before - what she had not encountered was anyone quite like this woman's son, Bernard (Bernie). While the details of their initial contact are reserved for a good, old-fashioned live telling, the two of them hit it off and went on a date (rescheduled from Friday to Saturday because Karen had already committed to spending Friday coloring with her younger sister). One date led to another, and another - trips to Florida and New Jersey along the way - and two years later, Karen married Bernie Rubb on August 31, 1975. 

Karen put her nursing career on hold as she and Bernie welcomed two children in the ensuing years, Eric and Tamara. She created a home filled with laughter and love, punctuated by late night card games, charades, and movie nights on what was probably one of the last remaining Betamax players on the east coast. Her home became the epicenter of family gatherings. Visitors would often be greeted by the strains of Irish folk music and the savory smells of lemon chicken or her mother's goulash. 

And her hugs were legendary. 

As her kids flew the nest, Karen's drive to serve others never waned and she returned to nursing, working as a charge nurse at Sewickley Valley Hospital and in recovery at Shady Side hospital before her illness unfortunately forced her from the work she loved so much. 

Karen was diagnosed with FTD in 2009 and battled the slow advance of her disease with grace. Even as she lost her ability to speak, her family and her caregivers would remark on the ever-present brightness in her eyes. A lifetime of service, of desire to help others, still bubbling beneath the surface, trying to get out. 

Karen is survived by her husband, Bernie, her children Eric and Tamara, her daughter-in-law, Caroline, her grandchildren Banjo, Leo, and Eloise, and her siblings Karol, Kathy, and Ray. Services at Ralph Schugar Chapel, Inc., 5509 Centre Avenue, Shadyside on Thursday, November 16, 2023 at 12 Noon. Visitation one hour prior to services (11 am - 12 noon). Interment Beth Hamedrash Hagodol Cemetery/Beth Jacobs Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family would kindly request donations to The Association for Frontotemporal Degeneration (https://www.theaftd.org/). www.schugar.com


Send Condolence

Rubb Family - we were saddened to hear the loss of Karen. We have fond memories of her hosting lacrosse picnics and sitting in the stands cheering. We are thinking of you all during this difficult time.

By Cibulas Family - November 30, 2023

Dear Bernie, Rick and I want you to know how sorry we feel for the loss of your beloved wife.

By Sheryl & Rick Sternberg - November 28, 2023

I recall babysitting Karen and her siblings many years ago. Love your family. May your legacy of love fill your family with smiles as they recall your presence in their lives.

By Mary Lou Mercer - November 23, 2023

Sorry for your loss z\'\'l. May her works and mitzvos continue to affect so many people who she cared about and served .

By Michael M Milch - November 19, 2023

Bernie, I was so surprised to see the death notice of your beloved Karen. So much suffering. We just got to Florida, so we couldn’t be with you. Our thoughts are with you and your family. May her memory be for a blessing and you were memories together. Sustain you during this difficult time. Sincerely, Dodi and Dan.

By Dodi - November 18, 2023

Sorry for your loss. Blessing's surround each of you.

By Judy Schorr - November 16, 2023

My dear and sweet friend. I cherish the memories of the fun we had along the way, Sewickley ER, Kennywood, Graduation parties, performances at SA. The list could go on and on. You were special in so very many ways. And your memory will live on in those who loved you deeply. Be at peace dearest Karen.

By Janice Molinari - November 15, 2023

Dear Bernie and family My condolences on the loss of your beloved wife, mother, grandmother, and sister, Karen. Hamakom Yinachem. Sincerely, Steven Santman.

By Steven Santman - November 15, 2023

Karen always had a smile for her patients and coworkers. She had a great sense of humor and was so kind! A lovely woman who made a difference in people's lives.

By Jan Klein - November 15, 2023

I am so sorry for your loss. Barach Dayan Emes...

By Bruce Gelman - November 15, 2023

We are so sorry to hear of the loss of your dear Karen.We are in Florida for the season but our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. BARUCH DYAN EMES.

By Jan and Mitchell Hoffman - November 15, 2023

Thoughts and prayers to Karen's family, and siblings. The Judy Family, Deb Korhnak, Peg Judy, Rege Judy, Kevin Judy, and Terry Judy, and their families.

By Peg Judy - November 15, 2023