Late wife of ESPN anchor Chris Berman leaves a legacy in Greater Waterbury

In this May 24, 2010, photo provided by ESPN, sportscaster Chris Berman stands with his wife, Katherine, upon receiving his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in Los Angeles. The wife of longtime ESPN broadcaster Chris Berman died in a traffic crash in Connecticut, the sports network's president confirmed Wednesday, May 10, 2017. Katherine Ann Berman, 67, a teacher, was one of two victims in the two-vehicle crash at about 2:15 p.m. Tuesday in Woodbury, state police said. (Scott Clarke/ESPN Images via AP)

WATERBURY, Conn. (WTNH) — Katherine Berman’s spirit will live on through her friends and fellow volunteers at “Literacy Volunteers of Greater Waterbury” — a non-profit that helps to improve literacy skills among kids and adults. It does that by collecting donated books or buying books to encourage reading and to improve reading skills.

2017 05 11kathyberman Late wife of ESPN anchor Chris Berman leaves a legacy in Greater Waterbury
(WTNH / LaSalle Blanks)

This is one of the big ways Katherine Berman gave back to the greater Waterbury community. It was her passion for 20 years. Before her volunteer work, she was a teacher at Chase Elementary School in Waterbury.

Friends say besides her family, teaching and helping people learn were her passions in life.

“She loved learning and she loved to share that,” said Mandy Allen, a board member at Literacy Volunteers of Greater Waterbury.

And she would share that with her celebrity husband — ESPN personality Chris Berman, who she would get to emcee fundraisers for the group so they could continue helping people.

“Chris was so proud of Kathy,” said Tina Agati, executive director. “Every time he did an event, we knew it was because of Kathy’s involvement in our organization and he was so supportive of her work and happy to help out despite his busy schedule. We are forever grateful to both of them.”

Chris Berman just emceed an event for Literacy Volunteers of Greater Waterbury about three weeks ago.

2017 05 11bermanbooknook Late wife of ESPN anchor Chris Berman leaves a legacy in Greater Waterbury
(WTNH / LaSalle Blanks)

They plan to honor Kathy Berman soon.

“We will miss her spirit,” Tina said. “That spirit will live on through our work.”

Another way it’s living on is through a program called “The Berman Book Nook” at Naugatuck Valley Community College. It provides books for children in the Child Development Program there. Each month, Literacy Volunteers of Greater Waterbury donates a fresh supply of new books to “The Berman Book Nook”.

“I think she liked anything that would inspire the children,” Tina said.

“She encouraged everyone to get involved in their community and help improve the lives of others,” said Mandy.

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