Valerie H. Caffrey

July 9, 1951November 13, 2020
Obituary of Valerie H. Caffrey
Valerie Nan (Howard) Caffrey born July 9, 1951, passed away November 13, 2020, in the Covid unit of Research Medical Center. A loving wife and mother, Valerie was a fierce advocate for thousands of people during her 45 year career as a social worker with AbilityKC (formerly The Rehabilitation Institute of Kansas City), often helping patients and their families navigate some of the greatest challenges of their lives. She briefly stepped away twice over the course of her career, once to care for her small children, and again to care for her ailing mother. As a lifelong resident of Kansas City, Valerie had the ability to develop and maintain lasting friendships in every stage of her life. She greatly cherished the time she spent with her fellow 1969 Southwest High School graduates, her Delta Delta Delta sorority sisters, her coworkers, and the friends she made as a parishioner of Visitation Catholic Church, among many others. When she graduated from the University of Missouri in 1973 with her Bachelors of Arts in Social Work, she also had a minor in music. She was a skilled pianist, and her love of music came full circle for her when she joined the Visitation Choir almost two decades ago. The union and comradery of this group was a source of great joy and light in her life. Caring for others was a reflex for Valerie, as she kept those near her well fed and well loved. The community she built was of tremendous support to her during her almost five year battle with urothelial cancer, support for which she was humbled by and overwhelmingly grateful. Valerie is preceded in death by her parents Richard and Marjorie (Sutherland) Howard. She is survived by her husband of 44 years Mark, daughters Leslie Burke (Dan) and Jeanne Earhart (Daniel), son Charles Caffrey MD (Genevieve), and seven grandchildren whom she adored. She is also survived by her brother Rich Howard (Janet), her sister Claire Bottero, cousin Lynn (Bishop) Wilson, brothers and sisters in-laws who were like siblings to her, and many cousins, nieces and nephews. Donations to AbilityKC in Valerie’s memory are suggested in lieu of flowers. Link to donate: A Mass of Christian Burial is planned for 10 am on December 12, 2020. In order to minimize the risk of gathering at this time, the family wishes to limit physical attendance to immediate family. The link to the live-streaming of the ceremony can be accessed here:

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Past Services

Saturday, December 12, 2020

Private Family Mass