Patricia A. Pittari

2021-01-07

Patricia Anderson Pittari died on January 7, 2021 in her home on Amelia Island, Florida. She was 88 years old and had been ill for several years.

Patricia is survived by her beloved husband of 64 years, John Joseph Pittari, M.D., and her five living children: Carolyn Ann (Kurt Marasco) of Amelia Island; John Joseph, Jr. (Kathleen) of Auburn, Alabama; Jeanne Marie (Paul Hanna) of Sugar Land, Texas; Tricia Ann (John Voss) of Jacksonville, Florida; and Michael Christopher (Karen Beall) of Lebanon, Pennsylvania. She is preceded in death by her eldest daughter, Mary Catherine, and her youngest child, Natalie Christine.

Patricia "Patsy Ann" Anderson was born on November 1, 1932 in Bronx, New York, the daughter of Catherine Kelly Anderson (1901-89) and Joseph Paul Anderson (1900-61). She had two older brothers, Joseph Anderson, Jr., and George Anderson, and is survived by a younger sister, Caryl Cunningham of Millsboro, Delaware. Patricia graduated from Saint Simon Stock School and attended the College of Mount Saint Vincent, where she studied nursing and graduated with highest honors (B.S.) in 1954. Her deep concern for helping others led Patricia to join the Visiting Nurse Service of New York City, where she worked tirelessly until her marriage to John Pittari on May 26, 1956, at Saint Simon Stock Church in the Bronx.

The couple moved to Brooklyn, New York, where John began his medical residency at Kings County Hospital. Patricia gave birth to their first child, Mary, in 1957. Their second child, Carolyn, was born in 1958 in Belleville, Illinois, where John served as a military doctor at Scott Air Force Base. Patricia gave birth to their third child, John, in Upper Darby, Pennsylvania, in 1960. Their fourth child, Jeanne, was born in 1961 in Camden, New Jersey. In 1962, the family settled in Reading, Pennsylvania, where John served as a radiologist at Saint Joseph's Hospital. They bought their first house in the Pennside neighborhood of Reading, where Patricia gave birth to their next two children, Tricia, in 1963, and Michael, in 1967. Patricia's love of nature led the family to build a house in a wooded section of Jacksonwald, where daughter Natalie was born in 1969 but died in infancy the following year. Throughout the 1960s and early-1970s, Patricia was active in a number of organizations in Reading and was a member of Saint Catherine of Siena Roman Catholic Church.

The Pittari's moved to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, in 1974, where Patricia was a highly valued member of Saint John the Baptist Catholic Church, singing in the choir for many years and later serving as a lector and Eucharistic minister. She was especially proud to sing with the Archdiocese of Miami choir for Pope John Paul II during his Mass in Tamiami Park in 1987 . Patricia was extremely committed to social causes, actively working for the right-to-life movement and supporting homeless shelters for runaway teens. In the mid-1980s, she trained to re-certify herself as a practicing nurse and volunteered at a Fort Lauderdale hospital.

Patricia and John bought a house in Highlands, North Carolina, in 1982, where Patricia spent several months each summer surrounded by nature. In Highlands she was a devoted member of Our Lady of the Mountains Catholic Church and was a regular supporter of the Highlands Biological Center, the Hudson Library, and the Center for Life Enrichment, where she volunteered for a number of years.

In 1987, Patricia and John moved to Bainbridge, Georgia, where John worked at Memorial Hospital & Manor until his retirement in 1995. During her time in Bainbridge, Patricia volunteered for a literacy project teaching young unwed mothers to read and she took courses in history and literature at a local community college. She was also an enthusiastic member of Saint Joseph Catholic Church. In 1996, she and John established their primary residence on Amelia Island but continued to spend four to six months in Highlands each summer and fall until Patricia's health began to decline in 2017. She was a faithful parishioner in Saint Michael's Catholic Church and was active in Respect Life, the Theresians, Bible study, and prayer groups.

Patricia was a devoted mother, grandmother, and, most recently, great-grandmother. She was an avid singer who was equally committed to sacred music and folk songs, and she shared her love of song with her family at every opportunity. Patricia was also a voracious reader and book collector with a deep love of literature and a keen interest in current events. She took great delight in reading daily newspapers, especially the New York Times, in which she completed the crossword puzzle almost every day. She loved travel and participated in numerous pilgrimages to religious sites around the world. In middle age, Patricia's interest in her Scotch-Irish ancestry led her to Ireland and Scotland as well as to Duchess County, New York, to visit the grave site of her great-grandfather, George Washington Anderson, who had fought in the Civil War. Regardless of where she lived, Patricia was a devoted supporter of art, music, and regional culture. Above all, she was a deeply compassionate person whose selflessness was an integral part of who she was and how she will be remembered by all who encountered her generosity of spirit.

In addition to her husband and children, Patricia is survived by eight grandchildren: John Joseph Pittari, III (Stephanie) of Belcamp, Maryland and Francesca Lane Pittari of Auburn, Alabama; John Madison Voss, Jr. (Kelsy) of Jacksonville, Florida; Emma Catherine Voss of Atlanta, Georgia; Peter Anderson Voss of Jacksonville, Florida; Elizabeth Marie Hanna of Atlanta, Georgia; Asa Maren Pittari of Lebanon, Pennsylvania; and Nina Beall Pittari of Lebanon, Pennsylvania. Patricia is also survived by one great-grandchild: Zachary John Pittari of Belcamp, Maryland.

A funeral Mass will be held on January 14, 2021 at Our Lady of the Mountains Catholic Church in Highlands, North Carolina, followed by the Rite of Christian Burial at Highlands Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Maryknoll Sisters.

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