Claire Christine “Cee Cee” Kaylor, 68, of La Porte, Indiana, passed away peacefully at home Friday, July 22, 2016, surrounded by her family.
She valiantly fought cancer as a child, and again for the last three years. Born in Cincinnati to George Francis and Esther Lillian (Fucito) Fisher, Ms. Kaylor was a 1965 graduate of Columbus High School, Columbus, Indiana. She went on to earn a B.S. in sociology in 1969 from Indiana University, Bloomington, and then worked as a social worker before finding her passion in the non-profit world. She was named executive director of La Porte County Youth Service Bureau in 1984, where she would serve her community’s youth and families for the next seventeen years. Under her leadership, the organization would expand to include Big Brothers-Big Sisters as well as a Teen Court program. Over the course of her tenure, she grew the small community outreach organization six-fold, to one with nearly half a million dollar annual budget.
She was awarded the 1990 Greater La Porte Chamber of Commerce ATHENA Award. The award honors the highest level of professional excellence. It is given to one who devotes time and energy to the community, and, especially, one who “opens the doors of leadership opportunity to women.” In 1999, she earned the Distinguished Leadership Award from the National Association for Community Leadership for excellence in community service.
At the conclusion of her tenure with YSB/BBBS after nearly two decades of service, the city of La Porte, La Porte County and Michigan City honored her with “Cee Cee Kaylor Day” in April of 2001. She then took her leadership and fundraising acumen to Samaritan Counseling Center, serving as their executive cirector until her retirement in 2015.
Cee Cee served her community by volunteering her time on countless boards, committees and organizations. Most recently, she served on the board of READ La Porte County and devoted her energies to the Lindsey O’Brien Kesling Foundation/Wishing Tree Foundation.
Cee Cee was preceded in death by her parents and two nephews, Jesse King and A. Tyler Fisher.
She is survived by son, Adam of Atlanta, Georgia; daughter, Beth Doolen (Will) of Bloomington; three granddaughters, Esther, Rowan and Nora Doolen; four siblings, Steve (Gretchen) Fisher of Columbus, Sue (Tom) Coleman of Lakewood Ranch, Florida, Beth (Kent) Davis of Hudson, Ohio, and Maggie (Brian White) Fisher, also of Columbus. She is the beloved aunt of numerous niece, nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews.
Visitation will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday, July 29, at Frank L. Keszei Funeral Home, Essling Chapel, 1117 Indiana Ave., La Porte, with eulogies at 6:30 p.m. and the rosary to follow. Mass of Christian Burial will be Celebrated at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, July 30, 2016, at St. Peter Catholic Church, 1101 Michigan Ave., La Porte.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to La Porte County Youth Service Bureau/Big Brothers-Big Sisters or the Samaritan Counseling Center, Michigan City.
To send condolences online, please visit EsslingFuneralHome.com.