Theresa A. Foss, 50, active at St. Mary Parish, in charity league,

Theresa (Duggan) Foss, 50, of Ridgefield, CT, wife of Eric J. Foss, passed away peacefully at home on May 13, 2013, after a courageous battle with breast cancer.

Theresa was born May 18, 1962, in Newton, Iowa, the youngest of four children born to Marita and Philip Duggan.  When she was in elementary school the family moved to Spring, Texas where Theresa spent most of her childhood.

In 1983, she graduated from Texas A&M with a degree in Accounting.  While studying at A&M, Theresa met her future husband, Eric, a recent college graduate who was working in College Station. The two married in 1984 and were blessed with three daughters, Laura, Elizabeth and Kathryn. The family lived in several cities, including Tampa, Florida; Goldens Bridge, New York; Denver, Colorado; Budapest, Hungary; and for the past 15 year, Ridgefield, CT.

Although she lived in many different places, Theresa had a special love for Texas, as evidenced by her passion for Country music, cowboy boots, and her warm southern drawl.

Theresa was a woman who was guided by the Christian virtues of faith, hope, and love. After a successful career in business, she ultimately believed her most important role in life was as a loving wife and mother.

Theresa was also an active member of her community.   She was a dedicated leader in the National Charity League, where she served as chapter president from 2006-2007. Theresa also volunteered as a Catechist at St. Mary’s Parish, and was a youth cheerleading coach.   Theresa’s charitable efforts always focused on those less fortunate.  She developed a special relationship with Interlude of Danbury, CT, and also spent her time volunteering with the Special Olympics, working with the elderly, and feeding the homeless.

Friends will remember Theresa’s radiant smile, a reflection of her inner beauty.  She greeted others with a warm embrace and had a genuine interest in how her friends were doing.  A loyal friend, she provided sound advice without being judgmental. She derived joy from small pleasures such as catching up over a cup of coffee, and reminded others to enjoy the “small things” in life because there was beauty in the ordinary.

Theresa’s home was a warm and welcoming place for family and friends. Friends will fondly recall a spontaneous invitation to the Foss home for pizza after a C.Y.O. basketball game.  Her parents would often be there as they viewed her home as their “second home”. Theresa also pursued her hobbies with relentless passion, and took great pleasure in running, gardening, and travel with her family.

First diagnosed with cancer in 2008, Theresa’s courage and God’s grace provided a three-year remission, during which time her devotion to her faith grew deeper.  Once an avid runner, she became an enthusiastic walker, with her destination often being the noon Mass at St. Mary’s.  She enrolled in Scripture Study and prepared high school freshmen for the sacrament of Confirmation.

When her cancer returned, Theresa fought valiantly with hope and prayer. She died peacefully at home, lovingly surrounded by her husband, daughters, and parents.

In addition to her immediate family, Theresa is survived by her sister, Debora (William) Langford, brother, Philip, Jr., seven nieces and nephews, several aunts and uncles, and a wonderful community of friends.  Her sister, Catherine Spillers, predeceased Theresa.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Friday, May 17, 2013 at 10:15 AM at St. Mary’s Church, Ridgefield.  The family will receive friends at the Kane Funeral Home, 25 Catoonah Street, Ridgefield, on Thursday, May 16, 2013 from 4 PM until 8 PM.

Contributions in Theresa’s memory may be made to:  The Theresa Foss Memorial Fund for Breast Cancer, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, Attention Dr. Brianne Von Fabrice, 633 Third Avenue, 28th Floor, New York, NY  10017