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Catherine "Kay" Flaherty Shroka

Catherine "Kay" Flaherty Shroka
  • September 3, 1927 - December 24, 2020
  • Summerville, South Carolina
  • In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to:
  • Pet Helpers
    1447 Folly Road
    Charleston, SC 29412
  • Intrepid Hospice
    2694 Lake Park Dr.
    First & Second Floors
    North Charleston, SC 29406

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“Kay was a great performer and friend of my dad, George Bailey. They enjoyed sharing the stage at Dock Street. She was hysterical and a great talent. ”
1 of 3 | Posted by: Eileen Bailey Gatti

“Kay was the person who taught me theater. She acted with me, she directed me, and she worked backstage with me. She was a wise, funny, uncensored,...Read More »
2 of 3 | Posted by: George Needham - Delaware, OH

“Kay was a force to be reckoned with when my friend, Suzanne, and I volunteered at Dock Street in 1970's. She certainly lived a life of example ...Read More »
3 of 3 | Posted by: Rita Addison - North Charleston, SC


Kay Flaherty Shroka, 93 of Summerville, South Carolina was the wife of the late Charles Shroka and mother to Laura Caligiuri of Charleston, Katie Nimmo of Summerville (Ted Nimmo) and Kevin Shroka of Goose Creek. Kay was born September 3, 1927 in Upper Darby, Pennsylvania then lived in Milford, Massachusetts. Daughter of the late Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Flaherty, she is survived by her children; 3 grandchildren: Rowand Robinson of Wisconsin (Kristen Robinson), Aimee O'Keefe of Mount Pleasant (Brian O'Keefe) and Emma Caligiuri (K.C.) of Johns Island; as well as 6 great-grandchildren: Bennett Love of Mount Pleasant (Katelin Love), Kasten Robinson of Wisconsin, Kylie Robinson of Wisconsin, Kenna Robinson of North Carolina, Coleman O'Keefe of Mount Pleasant and Leyton O'Keefe of Mount Pleasant. She was predeceased by her parents and husband, 2 grandchildren: Andrew Robinson of Charleston (Rose Robinson) and Nicholas Caligiuri of Charleston as well as her son-in-law: Chris Caligiuri of Charleston.

Kay moved to Charleston in 1951 with Charles, who was a career Naval Chief Petty Officer. Upon his retirement they decided to remain in Charleston. She owned a record store in Walterboro before working at the Charleston Naval Shipyard and US Plywood. Then Kay began her career at Continental Life Insurance, later becoming the President of the Charleston's Women Association. Volunteering was a passion of hers, exemplified by her help at local soup kitchens, assistance at the Association for the Blind and her services at My Sisters House.

Kay's favorite pastime was, by far, her work within the theater. She acted in, and eventually directed, countless plays over her 50+ years of involvement. Some of her most notable include her very first role in My Three Angels, portraying the wicked witch in The Wizard of Oz and her role as Georgie in Country Girl at the Dock Street Theater. She was a cast member at The Footlight Players of Romeo and Juliet, The Matchmaker and Look Homeward Angel, just to name a few. Other productions she performed in at various local theaters were Helium, Fiddler on the Roof, Guys and Dolls, Tom Sawyer, Macbeth, Steel Magnolias and The Last of Mrs. Lincoln. Her fame as both an actress and director made her as much a part of the Lowcountry as it's own cultural environment. Kay's abilities and talents as an actress, director and producer allowed her to become a part of Workshop Summer Theatre, Charleston Stage, Summerville's Flowertown Players, The Village Playhouse and Guerilla Theatre. Creating her own production company, branded after her name spelled forward and backward, Kayak Enterprises was a personal success. She was able to teach her grandchildren, Rowand and K.C., how to work behind the scenes of a play and even directed Rowand in the production of The Mouse Trap. Her children and grandchildren became accustomed to helping her learn her lines and rehearse for many of the plays which casted her. In later years, she acted in several locally filmed commercials and the movie Paradise.

Even though Kay worked tirelessly until her mid-80's, "just because she wasn't done yet", she thoroughly enjoyed reading and traveling. Some of her vacationing included trips to Ireland, England, Spain and Mexico. Being around people, her family and friends, was something she was always very fond of. Constantly the life of the party, she never met a stranger. Likewise, anyone who met her could hardly forget her humorous, rough and tumble personality. She was ready for adventure at all times, leading her to do such things throughout her entire life like getting her first tattoo on her 70th birthday. Thanks to her enthusiasm of the Peanuts characters, she chose to get Woodstock. Kay loved her family dearly and her presence will be incredibly missed by all of us.

Kay's Funeral Service will be held Wednesday, December 30, 2020 in the J. Henry Stuhr, Inc., Downtown Chapel, 232 Calhoun St., at 11:00 a.m. The family will receive friends Tuesday, December 29, 2020 in the Downtown Chapel from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. We ask that you please wear your mask and respect the social distancing guidelines.

To view the funeral service please visit the following: https://www.tributeslides.com/tributes/show/SQS789CG8247QSXT

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Intrepid Hospice, 2694 Lake Park Dr. First & Second Floors, North Charleston, SC 29406 or Pet Helpers, 1447 Folly Rd., James Island, SC 29412, http://www.pethelpers.org/.