Patsy "Pat" R. (Gibson) Shippee, 84, of Seymour, Ind., passed away Monday, Oct. 14, 2013, at Schneck Medical Center.
Born July 7, 1929, in Campbellsville, she was the daughter of the late Tommie S. and Ruth M. Gibson, both of whom preceded her in death, her mother in 2009 at the age of 100.
On Nov. 10, 1948, in Campbellsville, she married Robert "Bob" E. Shippee, whom she shared 57 wonderful years with until his death on Oct. 17, 2007.
Mrs. Shippee was a graduate of Campbellsville High School and attended Campbellsville Junior College in Campbellsville. She was the first executive secretary of Fruit of the Loom Manufacturing in Campbellsville.
She married Robert "Bob" Shippee on Nov. 10, 1948 in Campbellsville, where he was an announcer and "Man on the Street" for WTCO Radio. Mr. Shippee accepted a position with WJCD Radio relocating the couple to Seymour in October 1949. Seymour became the permanent home for the Shippees and their four children. When the youngest entered school at Redding Elementary, Mrs. Shippee also entered Redding Elementary as secretary to the principal, a position she would enjoy greatly for nine years. During this time, she served as president of the PTA and PTA Council. She also worked alongside her husband, typing the daily schedule logs for WJCD Radio. Later, she worked as an assistant in the nursery at Presbyterian Church Wee Care Daycare and provided childcare for the Mother's Day Out program and Christian Women's Club. Mrs. Shippee also enjoyed typing appraisals for Mike Jordan from her home. She returned to Redding Elementary as a Foster Grandparent through Agency on Aging where she tutored fourth and fifth graders until her retirement in 2007.
Mrs. Shippee was a 64-year member of First United Methodist Church in Seymour, where she taught Sunday school, served on the Mission Commission, helped with bake sales, rummage sales, Vacation Bible School and the Children's Choir. She had a beautiful singing voice and was a member and soloist for the Chancel Choir.
As a 57-year member of Epsilon Sigma Alpha Sorority, she held all offices of the local Beta Kappa Chapter, including president. Mrs. Shippee also held all except corresponding secretary of ESA state offices and was chairman of the 1974 International Convention held at the Hilton Hotel in Indianapolis. During convention, she was installed as International Corresponding Secretary to ICP, Judy Lester. Highlights from her ESA days included her husband Bob's involvement in Men of ESA, the support of her children, directing fashion shows held at SHS in conjunction with the Paris Style, traveling the U.S. and Bahamas for conventions, and supporting Camp Riley. She was thrilled to meet Danny Thomas, Founder of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, and was instrumental in launching the hospital as the sororities' national philanthropic project. Mrs. Shippee remained a member of Past Indiana Presidents and cherished her lifelong friendships through ESA.
Mr. and Mrs. Shippee shared their love of music as members of the Sexton Dance Club, worked the Jackson County Fair Horse Shows and attended Seymour High School basketball games and tournaments together.
The most important role in her life was being a good mother and wife, which she overachieved as evident by her family's love, respect and devotion. She had a gift of connecting one on one in a unique way with each and every family member, was always supportive, shared her faith and love of God, and acted as the communication system for the family. She cared for each of her eight grandchildren while her children worked, had social engagements or traveled. She often traveled along on vacations generously offering her help and contagious fun-loving company. She also enjoyed watching and entertaining her precious great-grandchildren.
She is survived by her children, Connie Roney, Robert "Bud" (Debbie) Shippee and Shirley (Perry) Knecht; eight grandchildren, Monica (Darin) Kriete, Wendy (Glenn) Meek, Andrew (Stephanie) Maschino, Sean Hanna, Barbara (Tommy) Phelps, Jamie (Kyle) Norman, Tyler Shippee and Michael Knecht; nine great grandchildren; a sister, Betty Zahler; and a brother, Tommie S. Gibson Jr.
She is preceded in death by her husband; a daughter, Bonnie Findley; two sons-in-law, Garry Roney and Rick Findley; two brothers, Romulus Gibson and Omar Gibson; and a stepfather, Ray Ford.
Funeral is today at Voss Chapel in Seymour. The Rev. Sandy Cooper will officiate.
Burial will be in Riverview Cemetery with a Voss dove release.
Friends may call at Voss Chapel today from 12:30 p.m. to the time of the service.
Condolences can be sent to the family through Voss Funeral Service and memorials can be written to The Brad Thompson Memorial Scholarship Fund through the Community Foundation of Jackson County or to the First United Methodist Church Memorial Garden Fund.
A complete obituary can be viewed on the funeral home website at www.vossfuneralservice.com.