Sonja G. (Johnson) Kuhns

February 28, 1938 ~ September 3, 2018 (age 80)

Sonja (Johnson)Kuhns, 80, renowned Kosher Caterer, loving mother and grandmother passed away peacefully at her daughter’s home on Monday, September 3, 2018, surrounded by loving family and devoted puppies.

Sonja Johnson was born in Syracuse, N.Y. on February 28, 1938 to Rose and John Johnson. She graduated from Central High School and attended S.U. to study accounting.

Sonja was a member of First English Lutheran Church, which is where she met her husband, Myers “Kay” Kuhns.Sonja and Kay married on June 16, 1956, and had three children: Debra, John and Linda.

In 1971, Sonja and Kay established Kuhns Catering, which earned her the reputation of the best kosher caterer in the CNY.  Notable events included a Man of the Year Dinner for Henry Kissinger, Governor’s Day Luncheon for Nelson Rockefeller and dinners for celebrities such asTony Bennett.

Sonja’s favorite holiday was Christmas. To many, Sonja may best be remembered as “the Lady of the Lights.” Over 5,000 lights emblazoned her home at the corner of Onondaga and Velasko Roads for over 30 years.

Sonja’s favorite role was that of doting grand-mother. When they weren’t off fishing, she’d take the grandkids to play at the Arcade. During the school year, she was an active supporter of her granddaughters’ sports teams.

Fishing and dogs were Sonja’s passions. She loved Syracuse University Basketball and catering for Jim and Julie Boeheim.

Sonja was preceded in death by her husband, her parents, her son, John Kuhns, and a grandson, Thomas David Harmeyer. She is survived by two daughters, Debra (Tom) Harmeyer and Linda (Paul) Troia, a daughter-in-law, Susan (Steve) Wisniewski, and her “adopted Jewish son,” Alan (Jessica) Richer. She also leaves behind her grandchildren: Kristen (KellyRose) Troia, Erica (Chuck) Comstock, Maddie Troia, Andrea and Paul Jerabek, and Katie (Paul) Grzegorczyk.

Calling hours will be held on Saturday, September 8, 2018 from 1 – 3 p.m., at the Bush Funeral Home, 120 E. Main St. (Rt. 5) Elbridge immediately followed by a Memorial Service.  In lieu of flowers, Sonja requests that donations be made to Survivor Tails Animal Rescue (

Deep gratitude to Dr. Scalzo and staff, and the incredible nurses on Crouse 4 South who made Sonja’s frequent transfusions a nurturing experience.

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