Karen Jean “Kerni” O’Brien

February 4, 1956 – July 22, 2017

SOUTH BEND-Kerni O’Brien, 61, passed away unexpectedly on July 22, 2017, after suffering a stroke.

She was born in South Bend, IN on February 4, 1956, to the late John and Vada (Kelley) Lonstrom.

Left to cherish her memory are: her sister, Diane DeVon of Minneapolis, MN; aunt, Jeanne Marshall of South Bend; nephews, Jeremy and Joseph (Isabel) DeVon; and niece, Sarah (Travis) Walker, all of Minneapolis; cousins, Bruce (Kay) Marshall of South Bend and Sharon (Dave) Nemeth of W. Bloomfield, MI; former husband, Major O’Brien; and loving great-nieces and nephews, Isabel, Abigail, Jadyn, Ellis, Vada, Phoebe and Seth.

Kerni was smart, beautiful and funny. She had an infectious laugh and a smile that lit up a room. She was kind and generous and was loved by everyone that knew her. As a NICU Nurse at Memorial Hospital, her life’s work was taking care of our most vulnerable new lives. She did that with compassion and kindness. She comforted new parents through the most difficult of times. She was also passionate about helping animals, especially her rescued dogs and cats.

She left us too soon; she still had so much to give! She was beloved by a lot of family and friends; and her passing leaves a hole in so many hearts. Her motto was “Just Believe” and she lived her life following those words.

A celebration of her life will be held on Thursday at 3:00 p.m. at the McGann Hay, Granger Chapel, 13260 SR 23, enter off Cherry Road. Chaplain Sarah Sampson, from Memorial Hospital, will officiate. A light reception, starting with a toast in her honor, will immediately follow.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a memorial donation to the American Heart Association-Go Red for Women, 7272 Greenville Avenue, Dallas, TX 75231

To send condolences or for directions log onto:  www.McGannHay.com.