Mrs. Carson died Monday, March 12, 2012, at Emory Hospital.
She is survived by her husband of 19 years, Robert Shane Carson, and her two beautiful daughters, Maree Jane and Emma. She is also survived by her mother, Rosemary Cain Grant, and her sister Kelly Grant.
She is predeceased by her father, Dr. Calloway W. Grant.
Karyn was born Feb. 23, 1970, in Memphis, Tenn., while her father was in dental school. She grew up in both Cornelia and Athens, and attended Habersham Central High School and Clarke Central High School, respectively. Karyn loved growing up a Grant in Cornelia, with cousins and aunts and uncles constantly in and out of Grannie Grant’s for Sunday dinners, sleeping porch slumber parties, and endless games in and around the house at all times of the year.
One of the youngest in the Grant Family clan, she was very proud to be a part of such a large and loving family. She was a 1988 honor graduate of Clarke Central. She attended Georgia Southern University and later the University of Georgia, where she graduated with a degree in education in 1997.
Karyn and her husband, Shane, were high school sweethearts and married on Aug. 22, 1992, in an outdoor ceremony at the State Botanical Gardens of Georgia. After Shane got a job installing geodetic domes on fuel storage tanks, they traveled together around the country for their first two years of marriage. They were in Nevada, Colorado, Minnesota, New York, Florida, and everywhere in between during that time. A great adventure to start their life together! It was after they returned home to the Athens area that Karyn was able to finish school and earn her teaching degree.
Karyn began her teaching career at Clarke Middle School in Athens, and then moved to Malcom Bridge Middle School in Bogart, to work closer to the family’s home in Watkinsville. As a math teacher, she was said to be able to reach the students others could not. She would take on those kids others may throw their hands up on and make them successful. It was this type of dedication that got her named 2008-09 Teacher of the Year for Malcom Bridge Middle School.
In June of 2009, Karyn was diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig’s Disease, after going to several doctors for pain and weakness in her foot. While the diagnosis and continued weakening of her body was devastating for her, her family and friends, Karyn continued to just carry on with her life; teaching and tutoring, always reading and learning new things, being a mom and wife, making adjustments in routine as the disease progressed with the day-to-day help of Shane for as long as she could. In 2010 she was named the ALS Association of Georgia Patient of the Year and felt proud to help support the ongoing efforts to find a way to stop the effects of the disease.
The love and support Karyn and her family received after her diagnosis always humbled her and she was so grateful for how her friends and family and the community continually wrapped their arms around her, Shane and the girls. It was all of the countless acts of kindness and selfless support that allowed her to fight through the terrible effects of ALS and gave her the courage she needed to be a part of her girls’ lives for as long as she was. Her strength and bravery in the face of this awful disease and her love for her girls are her most important legacies.
Memorials may be made to the ALS Association of Georgia (webga.alsa.org).
To send online condolences, go to lordandstephens.com.
Lord and Stephens West, Athens, is in charge of arrangements.
The Northeast Georgian
March 16, 2012