Patricia Ann Verlander Guittard
1948 - 2021
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GUITTARD, Patricia Ann Verlander Patricia ("Pat") Ann Verlander Guittard, teacher, mother, musician, and the beloved partner of Charles Francis Guittard for thirty-six years, was born December 8, 1948 in Hammond, Louisiana and passed away peacefully at The Reserve on Coit Road in Dallas on February 18, 2021. Pat was the younger of two children born to Warren Henry Verlander and mother Merian Frances West. Pat had a wonderful playful sense of humor that was always kind and had many friends. Her caregivers loved her for her humor, her interest in others, and her sweet spirit. She connected easily with all people and spoke without a trace of any accent. She was completely unprejudiced, seeing people as people. Pat sympathized with the underdog, the abused, and the less fortunate, whether human or animal. Pat and her family moved several times with the ups and downs of her father's employment. First to New Orleans, then to the bayou (Galliano, Golden Meadow), and then back to Hammond where she graduated. In high school Pat played the sax in the marching band. She took piano and organ lessons and occasionally played organ for the Hammond Methodist Church. When she was eleven, her father, a talented musician and composer, purchased an orgasonic piano for Pat and commissioned an artist to do an oil painting of Pat seated at her organ. Pat's mother Merian was a sweet lady devoted to taking care of her husband and two children. Pat's high school counselor persuaded her to apply to Centenary College in Shreveport and helped her obtain financial aid. Pat graduated from Centenary in 1970, the only person in her immediate family to do so. At Centenary she met her first husband Brian Thomas Moffatt where they both sang in the Centenary College Choir and married shortly after graduation, Pat with a degree in elementary education. After Centenary Pat and Brian moved to Austin where he earned his law degree, then to an assignment in Taiwan with the military, and finally back to Dallas, his hometown. Pat's love of music and singing has always been her primary passion. At Centenary Pat placed in various beauty and talent pageants which featured Pat's performances on the piano. Pat's other passions have been teaching children of all ages and young adults as well as loving and caring for animals, primarily rescue dogs from animal shelters. In the 1970s Pat moved to Dallas, parted ways with Brian, and taught school. She earned her Masters' degree in education from the University of Texas at Dallas with straight A's, her masters' thesis focusing on the study of learned helplessness. As she finished her Masters, she considered pursuing a Ph.D. in education at Harvard. Pat was unbeatable at Scrabble or other games requiring wordplay. However, in 1986 she met Dallas attorney Charles Guittard at Highland Park United Methodist Church. Charles quickly proposed to this bright, funny, caring woman who loved music, children, and animals. Pat accepted. In Dallas Pat taught at Dean Learning Center, the Garland ISD program for Gifted & Talented, and St. John's Episcopal. In Houston, she taught elementary school classes in the Alief School District and later music at the Westbury Methodist Church pre-school. Early on Pat taught at St. Georges in Rhode Island, All Saints in Vicksburg MS, and Tufts in Boston MA. Pat specialized in teaching children with learning disabilities and head-injuries but loved to teach music and other subjects as well. Pat had one child Steven Oliver Moffatt with her first husband. Pat was devoted to and dearly loved Steven every day of her life. Pat encouraged Steve in his educational, musical, and athletic pursuits, whether it was studying at St. Mark's in Dallas, attending Sunday school, singing in various choirs, or wrestling competitively at Lake Highlands High School. She watched proudly as he received his college diploma from her alma mater. She also took Steve on mother-son only trips to Disney World and to the winter Olympics in Calgary. More important, she passed on to him her love of animals. Pat and Charles have taken a number of trips, including to Israel to sing the Mahler 8th Symphony with the Dallas Symphony Chorus and the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra and to Australia/New Zealand to sing the Mozart Requiem with the Centenary College Choir at the Sydney Opera House. Pat also sang two years with the Dallas Symphony Chorus during two Christmas seasons at Carnegie Hall. In college she sang with the Centenary Choir at Radio City Music Hall. Pat has been a life-long Christian and was baptized in a Methodist church in Hammond. Pat and Charles have been members of Highland Park United Methodist, Highland Park Presbyterian, and First Presbyterian in Richardson. They sang in the choirs of most of these churches. Pat was a wonderful partner for Charles; she was affectionate, loyal, fun, spontaneous, interesting, supportive, and all the things a wife can be for her partner. Although she and Charles had no biological children together, they always considered their three sons, Steven Oliver Moffatt, James Francis Guittard, and Robert Bussey Guittard their children and Miles, Charlie, Finn, and Katherine ("Katie") Guittard their grandchildren. Of course their daughters-in-law (Katia Guittard and Candace Guittard) also have special places in their hearts. Pat is survived by Charles, their three sons and four grandchildren, her older brother Morris West Verlander, and Pat's very special first cousins on her mother's side (West) of the family, including Marilyn West, Michelle West Vicari, Barbara Ann Accardo Juneau, Ann West Hagstette, and cousin-in-law Lisa C. West. Pat is also survived by her caregiver angels including one special angel, Mary Weber Hayes, whom she and Charles cannot thank enough. Pat and Charles have been supporters of endowed scholarships at Centenary College and at Baylor University in Waco, Charles' alma mater. Persons wishing to make a donation in Pat's memory may do so to the Patricia Verlander Guittard & Steven Oliver Moffatt scholarship at Centenary or any charity that exists to protect our animal friends. A socially-distanced and masked memorial service for Pat will be held in the chapel at Sparkman/ Hillcrest at 7405 W. Northwest Highway in Dallas on Saturday, March 6, 2021 12:00pm. You may also attend via live stream at www.sparkman-hillcrest.com




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Published in Dallas Morning News on Feb. 28, 2021.
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