Patricia Mathews

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Woodstock, Vt. — Patricia Mathews, a leading community volunteer in Woodstock, for 15 years, died Monday, Jan. 8, 2018, after four and a half years of resistance to stage four cancer.

Patsy died at home with her husband and step daughter Suzanne at her side, after weeks of dedicated hospice care by Bayada. Her stepson, John, his wife, Linda, and Patsy’s adored grandchildren, Anna and Alex, were constantly in her thoughts.

Typically, Patsy never hid her condition while successively undergoing chemotherapies, immunotherapy and radiation at Dartmouth Hitchcock and Dana Farber Cancer Center. Despite often debilitating treatments, she kept up her volunteer activities, her active life, and even vacations in Tuscany and Anguilla.

Patsy was known for her upbeat attitude, her openness about her treatments, her compassion and acceptance of people, her incisive intelligence, her love of life and her “trademark,” – that beautiful smile.

As an active member of the community, Patsy was involved with countless aspects of town and village life. She was president of the Pentangle Arts Council for two terms, a board member for several years, and even filled in for eight months as executive director during a search for a permanent head.

At the Thompson Senior Center, Patsy was president for two terms and a board member for multiple terms. She was a volunteer waiter for many years, serving meals to many longtime residents she loved getting to know. Patsy even filled in temporarily for the executive director during family leave.

Patsy was also on the board of the job bank, a corporator of the Norman Williams Public Library, and active with the annual Wassail Weekend. In 2014, she was named Citizen of the Year by the Woodstock Rotary Club.

One of Patsy’s most valued connections to Woodstock was her membership in the Unitarian Church, where she loved singing with the choir. For Patsy, the church with its ministers, the Rev. Daniel Jantos and the Rev. Leon Dunkley, and its amazing congregation, were a source of great friendship, comfort and love.

Before coming to Woodstock, Patsy and John lived for over 40 years in Washington, D.C, and Cabin John, Md. Patsy worked as a ranking budget analyst for the U.S. Department of Education, where her skills were used to write Congressional testimony for the agency and its officials. Patsy had an intense interest in politics and news, often abetted by John, a reporter and editor at The Washington Star and a producer at NBC news.

Patsy was born in Nutley, N.J. on April 12, 1942, grew up from childhood through high school years in Pensacola, Fla. and graduated from George Washington University.

The Mathews moved to Woodstock in 2003. Patsy loved her countless good friends, the life of the village through the seasons, and the beauty of The Green. With a house adjacent to Mt. Tom, one of Patsy’s greatest joys over the years was running and walking the carriage trails with her beloved standard poodles.

A memorial service for Patsy is planned on Saturday, March 17, at 11 a.m. at the North Universalist Chapel Society (the U-U Church) in Woodstock.