Patricia Golden’s courageous battle with Alzheimer’s Disease ended June 1, 2019. Alzheimer’s robbed her of her life, but never her spirit. Throughout her ordeal she was concerned more about those caring for her than of her own well being. She never complained about her illness. Not once.
Patricia, daughter of Janet and Rudy Golden, began her life in Sunnyvale but spent most of her childhood in Campbell, graduating from Campbell High in 1954 and earning her AA at San Jose City College. While enrolled at San Jose State, Pat decided to take a three week vacation to Hawaii. That vacation lasted nearly twenty years. She took part time jobs to support herself, ultimately landing at the Bishop Museum as an assistant in the Entomology Department, where she surprisingly had a new beetle species named in her honor. Patricia worked nights as a hostess in some of the best restaurants in Waikiki. The stories she told and events she experienced in the Islands were endless. She was the embodiment of the Aloha Spirit and it stayed with her always.
Patricia returned to the Bay Area in the mid 1970’s, settling in the Gilroy area. She spent the rest of her working career in the Insurance Surety Bond industry. Her return also sparked a new devotion to volunteer work in her community wherein, inspired by her Grandmother Laura Maris Arends, Pat began touching the lives of many in her own special way.
Her first venture into volunteering was through Big Brothers and Big Sisters in South County. She then helped organize the first Garlic Festival, served on the Gilroy personnel commission for eight years and then on the parks and recreation commission. She was a docent at Bonfante Gardens, a server at St. Joseph Family Center Lord’s Table, a front desk volunteer at St. Louise Hospital, and a member of Gilroy Rotary. Patricia was recognized by the Gilroy Chamber of Commerce with the 2004 Firman B. Voorhies Volunteer of the Year Award.
“Aunt Pat” is survived by her sister Shirley (Golden-Keesling) Stuhr; nieces and nephews Carla and Scott Keesling, Patty (Keesling) McCann and John McCann, Jennifer Timpany, Melissa Keesling, Amie and Chris Keesling, Waverly Keesling and Rayla Keesling; cousins Gretchen Patrick, Lynne Milot, Harry Arends and Soma Carr. She will forever hold a happy place in our hearts.
A Celebration of Life will be held at Gilroy Presbyterian Church on Saturday, August 3, 2019 at 11:00 am, 6000 Miller Avenue, Gilroy 95020.