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Elizabeth Virtue (Liz) Kretsch

September 7, 1941 ~ January 5, 2023 (age 81) 81 Years Old

Elizabeth Kretsch Obituary

It is with immeasurable sorrow that we must announce the news of the passing of Elizabeth Virtue Kretsch. Liz left this earth at ten forty in the morning, on Thursday, January 5, 2023. She passed away at High Pointe Hospice in Haverhill, Massachusetts, after a short illness. Her husband of forty-one years, Kenneth Kretsch was at her side as her spirit moved on and was liberated from the physical discomfort that her illness had forced her to endure. Her family will be forever grateful for the care she received at High Pointe, as she prepared herself for the next chapter in an ever-evolving life story. Liz was born on September 7, 1941, in Cambridge, Massachusetts, the daughter of Ernest and Minnie (Pottle) Thorne, who both emigrated from Newfoundland, Canada. Raised in Cambridge, she graduated from Cambridge Rindge and Latin High School and shortly after graduation, found herself working as a secretary in San Francisco, California. Later in her life she received her master’s degree from Cambridge College. Much of her career in the workforce was spent with Organizational Dynamics Incorporated, in Burlington, Massachusetts. She specialized in quality control and group dynamics.

Though Liz was always a devoted wife, mother, grandmother, and great grandmother, with a large extended family, she had a second family at the Second Congregational Church in West Boxford, Massachusetts. There was not an area of the church’s life and ministry that Liz did not touch. Liz faithfully sang in the choir, leading the music ministry with her heart, soul and voice. She fiercely advocated for Outreach and served on the Church Council for years. She adeptly led adult education programs, from the WSDM (Women’s Spiritual Discussion Ministry) group to the Church’s Humble Explorations and Courageous Conversations about Race (Waking Up White) group. She loyally championed the mission and ministry of Ladies Charitables Society. She skillfully guided the congregation in the process to adopt their Open and Affirming Covenant. She passionately spoke out on justice matters that needed the Parishs’ attention, and compassionately spoke up about neighbors who needed their care. Liz wisely witnessed to her family, again and again how to live and love as Christ teaches us to do.

And Liz also loved to act. She was in many theatrical productions with the True Story Theater Improv and the Newburyport Actors Studio. However, no role brought her more joy than when she transformed herself into Periwinkle the clown. Periwinkle spent her time visiting children’s hospitals throughout the Boston area, bringing laughter joy and hope to many children who suffered from serious illness. Her time with the ‘Hearts and Noses Clown Troupe’ was perhaps some of her best work. After her retirement, Liz and Ken spent significant time covering as much of the world as they could afford. Over many years, Liz experienced the realities of life for people in Africa, Russia, Switzerland, Italy, The Netherlands, England, Ireland, Mexico, Israel and the Dominican Republic. She also spent significant time in her parents native Newfoundland, reigniting a kinship with her Aunt Flossie and many cousins.

Liz is survived by her husband Kenneth Kretsch of Boxford, Massachusetts, her brother Edward J. Thorne of Clarkston, Michigan, and her sister Lillian Corkery, of Waltham Massachusetts. She was preceded in death by a second sister, Evelyn Waldron, formerly of Derry, New Hampshire She is also survived by five children, Sean Greene of Merrimac, Massachusetts, Kenneth Kretsch Jr., of Eatontown, New Jersey, Kathryn Connolly, of County Cork, Ireland, Kristofer Kretsch of West Greenwich, Rhode Island, and Karl Kretsch, of Scranton, Pennsylvania, as well as eight grandchildren and four great grandchildren. She is also survived by eight nieces and nephews.

For those touched by Liz’s presence, nurtured by her concern and love, guided by her words of strength, and inspired by her pleas for a just and inclusive world, her passing has left a significant void. But knowing Liz, she would want the void to be filled by nurturing the physical and spiritual world as she did throughout her life. There will be a memorial service for Elizabeth on Sunday, January 15th, 2023, at 2 in the afternoon, at the Second Congregational Church of Boxford. The Church is located at the corner of Main Street and Route 133, in West Boxford, Massachusetts. The service will be followed by a collation in the Church. All who were affected by Liz’s presence are welcome to join her church and family in remembering the star they called Elizabeth. In lieu of flowers, donations in honor of Liz’s life work would be welcomed to: Elizabeth Kretsch Discretionary Charitable fund at the Second Congregational Church of West Boxford. PO Box 508, West Boxford, Ma. 01885. For those who wish to share a memory of Liz with her family, please visit www.cgfuneralhomegeorgetown.com
The Conte - Giamberardino Funeral Home, 14 Pleasant Street, Georgetown has been entrusted with Liz's care.

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Memorial Service
January 15, 2023

2:00 PM
2nd Congregational Church of Boxford
173 Washington Street
Boxford, MA 01921


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