PATRICIA GRUVER(1954 - 2016)

Patricia Ann Gruver (Piper) Was born January 1, 1954 in Vancouver, Washington, and passed away peacefully in her Puyallup home on January 9th after a challenging battle against ovarian cancer at age 62. She was the daughter of the late Jack and Verna Piper of Vancouver, where she grew up. After graduating from Hudson's Bay High School in 1972, she went on to Central Washington State College, graduating with a degree in Elementary Education in 1976. She began her career in the fall of 1976, teaching fourth grade at Crestline Elementary School in her home town. While at Central she had met the love of her life, John Gruver. Patty and John married on June 17, 1978, and in their 37+ years together they enjoyed a truly wonderful life. They moved to Puyallup in 1984, where they settled down and had two loved daughters, Elyse Marie and Katharine Margean. While John was off fishing in the Bering Sea, Patty stayed home raising their daughters. She spent countless hours helping at their schools and PTA, receiving the Golden Acorn award in 1998, an accomplishment for which she was very proud. As the girls grew older, Patty restarted her teaching career; first as a substitute teacher in the Puyallup District and later in 2001 in a full-time position at Ridgecrest Elementary. Here, her love of teaching flourished, and she impacted many young lives with her passion, commitment, and kind smile. Her students were captivated by both her "grandmother" persona and her never tiring stories about her corgi, Daisy. After taking a year off to battle the cancer, she returned to teaching in the fall of 2013 at both Hunt and Pope Elementary Schools, retiring from Hunt in June of 2015. Patty is survived by her husband John, daughter Kate Gruver, daughter Elyse Hearns, son-in-law Nico Hearns, and two grandchildren, Aubrie and Kameron Hearns. Patty will be missed and lovingly remembered by all who knew her. Patty's family wishes to thank the doctors and staff at Group Health's Tacoma and Bellevue facilities, St. Joe's, and Overlake Hospital for their remarkable, and often heroic, assistance in her battle. Patty was especially grateful for the never ending support, friendship, and positive influence put forth by both the infusion nurses at Group Health's Bellevue facility and by her home health care team. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to Northwest Harvest, a charity that Patty felt most passionate about.

Published in News Tribune (Tacoma) on Feb. 20, 2016