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Patricia Rhodes Stauffer


February 14, 2020


Patricia Rhoads Stauffer, 89, passed away Feb. 12, 2020, in Danville, PA. A long-time Danville resident, Patricia Joyce, was born Oct. 14, 1930, in Clearfield, Pa., the oldest daughter of Fred and Bernece Rhoads. 

She met her husband-to-be when she was hired as a high school senior to give tours at the newest attraction in town – WCPA radio station.  She went on to attend Gettysburg College before returning to Clearfield to wed Leroy W. Stauffer on Nov. 26, 1949. It broke her heart when Lee, her husband of 69 years, died 14 months ago.

Patricia was intelligent and curious, persistent to the point of stubbornness, and a perfectionist. She disliked making decisions and found compromise difficult but having made up her mind pursued her goals single-mindedly.  She was an early environmentalist who hated to waste anything, often to a fault. She had exquisite taste, loved to laugh, enjoyed entertaining and threw great parties. She faced the trials of her life with stoicism and courage, refusing to let the bad things that happened win. She helped her husband and children see the colors and taste the flavors of life. She will be greatly missed.

She had many passions and was a hard worker. She raised and bred Welsh ponies, often getting up at 5 am to break the ice on their water buckets during an Ohio winter, or administer their shots. With her younger son, she raced sulky in the 1960s wearing peach and white silks. She loved gardening, bird watching, auctions and antiquing – all while raising four children and taking care of the home front so her husband could excel at his business of running community newspapers. They lived by turn in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Connecticut, back again to Ohio and finally Pennsylvania.

Family was her focus. They sat down to a home-cooked dinner every night. An inventive cook, she was ahead of her time with the foods she prepared – often to the dismay of her children’s friends who might stay for dinner and find an Indian curry or seafood mousse instead of the meat and potato standard of the day.

She was a creative, making costumes and creating elaborate themed children’s birthday parties.  She painted in oils and acrylics, sketched in charcoal and even after age crippled her hands, she would do little pen and ink drawings to embellish a birthday or holiday card. In 1974 she returned to college at Kent State University pursuing an Art History major.

She relished the chance to explore countries and cultures, and was widely traveled. While she enjoyed Europe, the Baltics, New Zealand, Canada and the UK, it was Asia that influenced her most. Her personal style reflected her travels to India, Thailand, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan and Sri Lanka. For a time, she led tours sharing her love of the Orient with others. In later years, she and her husband navigated the Great Lakes by boat and she indulged her love of fishing.

A cradle Episcopalian, she served the Lord throughout her life. At Christ Memorial Episcopal Church in Danville, she served on the vestry and cemetery committee, was a reader and took communion to shut-ins. She was also a member of Christ Memorial Church in Warren, OH, and attended St. Andrews in Ft. Pierce, FL

In addition to her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by a son, Douglas Fred.

She is survived by a son, Michael Lee and his wife Dolly of Danville; a daughter Cynthia Louise of Hillsborough, NC; a daughter Pamela Stauffer Christine and her husband, Ed, of Lititz; a daughter Neela Marikkar and her husband, Zarook, of Colombo, Sri Lanka; her sister, Constance R. McGarry of Clearfield; five grandchildren, Alexander L. Christine of Virginia, Lucas Stauffer Weller and Alana Stauffer Weller, both of North Carolina, Andrew Moyle of Florida and Jessica Moyle of Oregon; and two great-grandchildren, Kaiya Stauffer Atkins of North Carolina, and Brieten Decker of Oregon. 

Family and friends are invited to a Celebration of Patricia’s Life to be held Thursday, February 27, 2020, at 11 am at Christ Memorial Episcopal Church, 120 E. Market Street, Danville with Father Jim Strader-Sasser officiating. The family will also receive friends from 10 am until time of service.

Flowers will be provided by the family. Memorial contributions in memory of Mrs. Stauffer may be made to: The Stauffer Family Fund and mailed c/o the Danville Area Community Foundation, 725 W. Front St., Berwick, PA 18603, where they will continue to support the community and causes she loved. Arrangements are under the direction of the Visneski Funeral Home Inc., 42 W. Mahoning St., Danville.

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