Category Archives: Memorials

Billings, Katherine Virginia (nee Lang) 1930-1997

kay_bill_dec96aKatherine Virginia Lang (Kay) was born September 22, 1930 in Calumet, Michigan. She was the seventh and last child of Thomas and Rose Bertrand Lang. When she was young, the family moved to Detroit, Michigan, where Kay continued to reside until she moved to Garden City, Michigan, a year before she died. Kay married George William Billings (Bill) on September 14, 1955, and they had two children: Katherine Geralyn and William Thomas.

Above: Kay with her Kindergarten class, 1935

Above: Kay with her Kindergarten class, 1935

Kay was a homemaker, who enjoyed keeping a pleasant and loving home for her family. She was also an avid reader, and spent much of her time at the library and used book stores. She enjoyed novels and had a special interest in English history, especially the Tudor period, often reading about the lives of Henry VIII and Elizabeth I. She kept a journal of many favorite poems, and especially liked those of Emily Dickinson. She enjoyed knitting later in life.

Kay’s main love was her family, including her husband and children, her parents, and her brothers and sisters. She had a heart for old people and often visited older aunts and uncles in their later years. She was a loving grandmother to her two grandchildren. She was often “adopted” as grandma by neighbor children and friends.

Kay with favorite uncle, Hugh Lang, 1945

Kay with favorite uncle, Hugh Lang, 1945

Kay’s faith was an important factor in her life. She was a devout Catholic, who prayed her Novena and Rosary daily.

Kay loved the color blue. Her favorite music was the theme from Somewhere in Time, bagpipe music, and Celtic songs. She also had a twenty-five-year love of Rod Stewart music.

Kay had a sensitivity for the past and kept many clippings, mementos and heirlooms to remember those gone before. Kay and Bill celebrated their 40th anniversary in 1995 with family and friends. In her last three years of life, Kay suffered from heart problems. She died a month after heart surgery on December 27, 1997.

A sample of her favorite poetry, found handwritten among her mementos:

Lines from a poem by Wordsworth

As if but yesterday departed,
Thou too art gone before; but why,
O’er ripe fruit, seasonably gathered,
Should frail survivors heave a sigh?

Mourn rather for that holy Spirit,
Sweet as the spring, as ocean deep;
For Her who, ere her summer faded,
Has sunk into a breathless sleep. 

From “On Time” by John Milton
FLY envious Time, till thou run out thy race,
And Joy shall overtake us as a flood,
When every thing that is sincerely good
And perfectly divine,
With Truth, and Peace, and Love shall ever shine
About the supreme Throne
Of him, t’whose happy-making sight alone,
When once our heav’nly-guided soul shall clime,
Then all this Earthy grosnes quit,
Attir’d with Stars, we shall for ever sit,
Triumphing over Death, and Chance, and thee O Time. 


DEATH NOTICE: Billings, Katherine V. December 27, 1997. Beloved wife of George. Dear mother of Katherine (Richard) Palmer and William (Beverly). Grandmother of Marsha (Todd) Westfall and Brandon. Great grandmother of Devan. Sister of Thomas Lang. Visitation Monday 2-9 p.m. Services Tuesday at John N. Santeiu & Son Funeral Home, 1139 Inkster Rd. (Between Ford & Cherry Hill). Memorials to Leukemia Research Life.

NAME AT BIRTH: Katherine Virginia Lang

BIRTH: 22 Sep 1930, Laurium, Houghton County, Michigan
DEATH: 27 Dec 1997, Detroit, Michigan
BURIAL: Roseland Park Cemetery, Berkley, Michigan
FATHER: Thomas Francis Lang
MOTHER: Rose Bertrand

MARRIED: George William Billings, September 22, 1955
CHILDREN: Katherine Geralyn and William Thomas

LINKS: Kay’s family genealogy is at

E-mail a message to Kay’s Family