Karen was born Nov. 14, 1962, in Franklin, N.C., to Patricia Kelly and the late John Kelly.
Karen was preceded in death by her father, John Kelly.
Karen is survived by: her husband, Kevin Panico of Rabun Gap; three daughters, Tara P. Henson (Lance), Kara Panico and Sara Panico, all of Rabun Gap; two brothers, Dennis Kelly of Franklin and John Richard Kelly (Monique) of Clayton; two sisters, Lynn Kelly Wise (Bill) of Pensacola, Fla., and Sandra Million (Tim) of Tiger; and a grandchild, Lane Henson.
Karen was a loving wife, mother and grandmother, and she was a graduate of the Rabun County High School class of 1980, a member of Dillard United Methodist Church and a very talented painter, especially when it came to faux finishes. She was a longtime employee of the Clayton Pizza Hut and The Dillard House, and she was a certified personal trainer. Karen was a foster parent to 52 children. She won manager of the year award with the Deland Corp., which operates 60 Pizza Hut stores. Karen had a great love for the outdoors and being on the farm.
Services were held Saturday at Dillard United Methodist Church. Burial followed at Wesley Memorial Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made by check to Sara Rose Panico for her college education fund in care of Regions Bank in Clayton.
Beck Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements. An online guestbook is available at www.beckfuneralhome.com.