Mary Elizabeth Patton, 84, left her earthly form on May 21, 2015 to become part of the ever expanding universe with all her loving memories of family, friends, music, art, film and visions of trees and her beautiful garden. She leaves behind all of her unfinished projects she wanted to accomplish someday when her somedays ran out – but she has said, she has no regrets.
“There are estimated to be between 100 and 200 billion galaxies in the Universe. How exciting to find myself on this journey. I leave this beautiful earth with its magnificent trees, exquisite birds and animals of all kinds that I have had the pleasure of seeing in Kenya, South Africa and other beautiful places. Plus the cultures that for me have been interesting to study and a challenge to paint. Leaving behind the many memories of travel also in this wonderful country. Proud to have been in each state except for Hawaii and Alaska. I have enjoyed teaching and learning along with many talented students. I carry images so sublime with me…ideas to contemplate along the way, from scientists and philosophers I have read. [I carry] memories of films by brilliant people who have enriched my life, and friends who have helped me through difficult days and most of all, of the love of four wonderful creative children who have suffered their mothers idiosyncrasies all these years. I wish you each ‘enough’ and to be kind to each other.”
Born January 25, 1931, Mary Elizabeth is survived by her four children: David (Laura Murawski), Stephen (Gloria Zambrano), Kevin (Lucretia Madonna) and Renee (Rob Evans), four grandchildren: Desiree Patton, Michael Patton, Lucas Evans and Elizabeth Quinn Evans, a sister Emily Louise Millet and nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her husband Charles Patton, brother John Donald Roach II and parents, John Donald Roach I and Mable Robinson Roach.
Mary Elizabeth began her artistic journey when her parents sent her to McCaskey high school at the age of 13 to study under Pauline Stauffer where she earned one of the first scholastic gold keys in Lancaster County. That same year, ME studied at Moore College of art and Design on the weekends. She was the youngest member to join the Marietta art group, in 1945 along with Trompe L’Oeil painter, Henry Libhart.
She entered Pratt institute of Fine Art after graduated high school. She soon began freelance work in fashion illustration in NYC before she married the late Charles Patton and began painting commissioned oil portraits in Philadelphia as well as freelance work in a local newspaper for fashion illustration. After moving to East Petersburg, PA, Mary Elizabeth was hired as the Art teacher at Lancaster Country Day School where for a short times, taught studio art ” to all 12 grades” (A little fact she liked to tell) She proposed an art history program to then headmaster, John Jarvis who eagerly accepted. After ten years of inspiring students, she retired from teaching so as to follow her passions of travel and exploring other cultures, primarily of Africa and the American Southwest. She did extensive paintings of each. She was instrumental in beginning a live model studio open to the public at F&M in the mid 1970’s.
Mary Elizabeth loved so many things. Her passion for learning never waned. She was eccentric, beautiful and opinionated until the day she died.
“I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.”
Friends and family are invited to attend her Life Celebration Memorial Service in her garden at her home in East Petersburg on a later date TBA. If you hope to attend, please email email@example.com by May 28th. Thank You.