VanSistine, Patricia "Pat"
Patricia Carol VanSistine, 88, West De Pere, entered eternal life on April 19, 2013, with her loving family by her side. She was born December 17, 1924 to Alphonse and Everesta VanSistine in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. She graduated from Nicolet High School, and attended the Oshkosh Teacher's College where she pursued a degree in education.
Patricia (Pat as she was lovingly called) became a kindergarten teacher and taught for 33 years. She taught a short time in Wisconsin, Hawaii, and Australia, but the majority of her teaching years were in Minneapolis. She loved teaching and the opportunities it gave her to make a difference. She believed in giving her students opportunities for self-exploration and creativity. Over the years former students have contacted her and thanked her for being the dedicated and caring teacher she was.
Throughout her years of teaching, and after her retirement Pat traveled the world. Every trip became an adventure she treasured very much. Her very close friend Mary Forberg accompanied her on many vacations. In addition to traveling together they built a beautiful cabin in Ely, MN. There they enjoyed nature and the beauty of the surrounding area. They always welcomed family and friends to both their cabin and home in Minneapolis. After Mary passed away, Patricia returned to Wisconsin to be with her family.
Pat's family was one that loved and truly cared a lot about each other. As a young girl, Pat enjoyed spending time with her sister and three younger brothers. With her siblings and in-laws, she loved playing cards and other games. Pat especially enjoyed monthly get-togethers where they reminisced about the past. Generally a little family teasing occurred at these gatherings. Pat also enjoyed spending time with her nieces and nephews. She took an interest in their lives, and they loved her and appreciated the time spent with them. Her friends in Minnesota and Wisconsin brought joy into her life. These friends were like family, and they took care of each other.
Pat loved telling and listening to family stories and with the help of many relatives and friends she researched her family history. She is very proud of her heritage. She loved both of her parents very much and appreciated the values they lived by. They influenced her life and helped her to become a very kind and compassionate person.
Pat had a very strong faith and enjoyed going to Old St. Joe's Church in West De Pere with her brother Don. It is the same church she attended as a child. The parish community welcomed her presence each Sunday and looked forward to her smiling face.
Pat enjoyed going to the Farmer's Market on Saturday mornings with several of her family members. She was one of the most popular attendees. Vendors and other visitors to the market looked forward to seeing her. She had a special love for sunflowers, generally purchasing just one to take home each week to put in a vase in her apartment. Patricia loved feeding and watching birds and other little animals that came to eat on the feeders on the balcony of her apartment. She also enjoyed knitting, reading, and making jewelry. Patricia was a very generous and giving person all of her life. It was important to share what she had with others.
Pat will be dearly missed by her siblings and in-laws: Jean (Mark) Plummer, Jerome (Karen) VanSistine, Dave (Janet) VanSistine, and Don VanSistine. She will also be missed by her nieces and nephews: Steve (Mimi) Plummer, Mike (Ann) Plummer, Kim (Mike) VanDenLangenberg, Dan (Cathy) VanSistine, Toni VanSistine, Linda (Charlie) VanSistine- Yost, Paul (Sue) VanSistine, Lori (Tripp) Maher, Tom (Janelle) VanSistine, Mary Kay VanSistine (Mike Willard), Chris (Terry) Hasselbacher, Sue (Gene) Simons, Lisa (Pete) Anderson, and Patti (Keith) Christianson, great nieces and nephews, friends, and Bernie (Toni's dog). Pat was preceded in death by her parents: Alphonse and Everesta VanSistine, sisters-in-law: Faunie VanSistine and Joan VanSistine, nephews: Mark Plummer Jr, and Peter VanSistine, and her very close friend Mary Forberg.
A Celebration of Pat's life will be held on Tuesday, April 23, 2013 from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m. at St. Norbert College Parish at Old St. Joseph Church. Mass will follow at 11:00 a.m. with Fr. John Tourangeau, O. Praem officiating. Inurnment will be in Mt. Calvary, De Pere. Please visit www. ryanfh.com
to send online condolences to the VanSistine family. In lieu of flowers, a memorial fund will be established in Pat's memory.
Pat's family would like to thank the doctors, nurses, Spiritual and Pastoral Care Team, and the ninth floor staff at St. Vincent Hospital, unity Hospice, Fr. John Tourangeau, O. Praem, Sister Laura Zelton, and Old St. Joe's Parish Community for their care and support. A special thank you to Diane (D.) and Kathy, Pat's neighbors/friends, who watched over and enjoyed spending time with her.
"Pat, we know there is a sunflower waiting for you in heaven. We love you so much."