Karen K. Hussain

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Karen Kay Hussain of Cupertino, Calif., 74, died on Aug. 14, 2016, of complications due to cardiac surgery.

Visitation was Saturday, Aug. 20, at Tuecke-Allyn Funeral Home, Guttenberg and one hour before services at the church.

Funeral services were Sunday, Aug. 21, at St. John's Lutheran Church, conducted by Rev. Shane Anderson.

Interment was at Guttenberg City Cemetery, Guttenberg.

Karen was born June 23, 1942, to Walter and Malinda Meyer on a farm on Jolly Ridge. The family then moved to Guttenberg where she spent most of her teenage years. Upon graduating from high school, Karen attended Wartburg College in Iowa, Texas Lutheran, and Columbia University. She worked as a registered record librarian in New York from 1962-1965. Karen returned to Iowa for a short time then worked as registered record librarian at Greeley, Colo. 

In 1966 Karen joined the Peace Corp’s second class and went to Malawi, Africa, where she helped villagers who were sick with tuberculosis get medical help at the main hospital. In 1969, Karen attended Arizona State University where she finished her degree and met Syed Wajahat Hussain. The couple married in 1971 and moved to Chicago. Karen and Syed spent their honeymoon driving from Germany to Pakistan, then back to London. They returned to Guttenberg before moving to California where they started a family in Cupertino, Calif. Every year Karen, Syed, and their two girls would come back to Guttenberg for two weeks in the summer and visit friends and family.

Karen dedicated her 45-year career to medical records and the Cancer Registry, ensuring the nation's cancer data was kept up to date and organized so advances could be made in treatments. Up until her surgery, Karen was still managing a 45 person department and working 16-20 hours a day to make sure projects were delivered on time with the utmost quality. She was a humanitarian who selflessly helped so many without expecting anything in return. Her presence filled a room with positivity, and she believed deeply in the power of community and keeping in touch with her classmates in Guttenberg. 

Karen is survived by her husband, Syed Wajahat Hussain; her daughters, Sofia Hussain (39) and Farah Hussain-Green (36); her brothers, Carlyn Meyer and Allyn Meyer and her cats, Fluffy and Yittle. 

In lieu of flowers, a memorial will be established.

Online condolences may be left for the family at

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