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Remembering Sister Carolyn Schanz, CSJ

 Albany Province

September 6, 1934 – January 28, 2024

Sister Carolyn Schanz (Anitra William) died on Sunday, January 28, 2024 at the Teresian House in Albany, New York at the age of 89 in the 71st year of her religious life. Born on September 6, 1934, Carolyn was the fourth of six children of Bertha and William Schanz.

Carolyn was a remarkable woman.  A natural athlete, she excelled in basketball, softball, swimming, and skiing.  She had an enthusiasm and zest for life that was contagious.  She was a born leader, a fact affirmed by her Community when she was named Superior at a young age and then elected Regional Superior.  She was an excellent Math teacher and a charismatic administrator who was principal and superior at St. Francis de Sales, Utica, New York for 9 years and then the first woman principal and only president for her Alma Mater, Catholic Central High School for 20 years. When she retired from teaching and administration, Carolyn attended Austin School of Beauty and received her license in cosmetology. For 9 years she assisted the home bound elderly, doing hair, running errands, chauffeuring, contacting their families when they were in need and ultimately attending their wakes and funerals.

An inveterate learner, Carolyn loved adventure and was always ready to try something new. She was willing to take on anything, be it a school, a Capital Campaign, a trip to a foreign country or a challenging diamond slope. She loved a good time and shared them with her family and friends, most of whom have preceded her into eternity. She was a woman of deep faith, prayer, and compassion. She forgave and accepted when others were prone to judge.  Carolyn was a hard worker who put in countless hours on tasks at hand but who always knew how to recreate, restore and relax. She loved flowers, especially her mother’s roses, good food, lakes, and oceans, sailing and nature. Gifted with poise, presence and personality, Carolyn motivated countless students, faculties and families with her insights, experience, and sense of humor. She was an extremely fair person and injustice deeply disturbed her. Her mantra was: “I do the best I can with what I have” and this belief brought her peace during conflict. The highest compliment you could pay her was to tell her how much like her mother she was. May their reunion bring her the deepest joy.

Carolyn is survived by her brother John, her sisters-in-law Dorothy and Catherine Schanz, her cousin Brigitte Johnson and numerous nieces and nephews and the Sisters of St. Joseph. Her wake will be on Sunday, February 4th from 2:00 – 4:00 P.M. with Vespers at 4:00 P.M. followed by her funeral on Monday, February 5th at 10:30 A.M, St. Joseph’s Provincial House, Latham, New York.

Contributions in Sister Carolyn’s memory may be made to the Office of Mission Advancement, St. Joseph’s Provincial House, 385 Watervliet-Shaker Road, Latham, New York, 12110 or donate online.

Category: Obituaries

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The Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet are a congregation of Catholic sisters. We, and those who share our charism and mission, are motivated in all things by our profound love of God and our dear neighbors. We seek to build communities and bridge divides between people. Since our first sisters gathered in 1650, our members have been called to “do all things of which women are capable.” The first sisters of our congregation arrived in St. Louis, Missouri in 1836, and we now have additional locations in St. Paul, Albany, Los Angeles, Hawaii, Japan and Peru. Today, we commit to respond boldly to injustice and dare to be prophetic.


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