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Family-Placed Death Notice
McDONALD, Patricia PATRICIA McDONALD Patricia Marie Minser McDonald passed away at home in Atlanta on April 15, 2013 after a yearlong illness with pancreatic cancer. Patty was born September 9, 1939 and spent her first years in White Bear Lake, MN. Her family moved to Oak Ridge, TN in 1942 to support the Manhattan Project. Against a backdrop of wartime secrecy, Patty had a happy and carefree childhood, roaming through the woods and playing with her brother, Billy, and many friends. Patty developed an interest in art at Oak Ridge High, graduating in 1957. Following two years at Chattanooga College, she earned BA and MA degrees in art at the University of Georgia. She taught art at UNC Wilmington and volunteered in the Atlanta Public Schools. On the verge of joining the Peace Corps, she decided instead to marry Laughlin McDonald of Winnsboro, SC, with whom she enjoyed a deeply compatible and lasting relationship. The couple wed in 1966, eventually settling in Atlanta, where they raised two children, Molly and Matthew. Patty was involved and energetic. She provided immigration counseling at Catholic Social Services and was active in her neighborhood civic association. She played tennis at Piedmont Park and swam at the MLK, Jr. Natatorium. A founding member of the Oglethorpe Natural History and Preservation Society, she considered every camping trip a success, no matter how foul the weather. Her beautiful watercolors and ink drawings capture scenes of many an outdoor adventure. Patty knew how to grow, fix, or prepare just about anything. To her last days, she read avidly and was devoted to her book club. In addition to her husband and children, Patty is survived by her brother, William G. Minser, of Maryville, TN, and his family; her son-in-law, Jonathan Gelber; grandchildren Collin McDonald, Lucy Gelber, and Henry Gelber; and numerous kinfolk and friends. A private memorial get-together for family and friends will be held Sunday, April 21 at 4:00 pm. Online condolences may be made at www.hmpattersonspringhill.com.
Published in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution from Apr. 20 to Apr. 21, 2013