We said goodbye to Patricia Dee Gammill on June 27, after an amazing life. She was born Sept. 5, 1940, in Whittier, Calif., and became Patt to everyone who came in contact. She moved around with her family including three brothers and graduated high school in Omaha, Neb. From there, she attended Denver’s Women College with a degree in music; and it is there she met and married Gerald Hunter Gammill on June 9, 1960, after his graduation from the Air Force Academy. Through her life as a military wife, she established lifelong friends who remember her fondly and became an advocate for animals in need. During this time, her three children experienced her devotion to them as well as housing temporarily a host of ducks, birds, dogs, cats, and saw her save snakes and any creature living.
Patt was an avid tennis player well into her 60s and instilled the sport to her three children. Upon her move back to Colorado in 2005, Patt began volunteering her time and energy to the Special Olympics and reacquainted her love for skiing. There are many family trips to Pagosa resulting in “Nana” skiing with her grandkids and kids. She also established great friendships in Pagosa through her church, her neighborhood and canasta group. Patt’s contributions throughout her life are far too many to mention, but she loved to help anyone and anything in need. She had a tremendous heart that will be greatly missed.
Patt and Gerry recently celebrated their 60th anniversary on June 9, and was able to celebrate virtually with all of her family members which gave all of her kids and grandkids the opportunity to speak of her wonderful impact on their lives. She even got to see her 2-year-old great-grandson. Patt was special to each grandchild through her singing “Fuzzy, Slimy Worms,” frequent visits and reading specially selected books. One grandchild wrote, “Nana was an amazing, caring person who inspired me to love unconditionally as she did all her family.”
Patt leaves behind her husband, Gerald Gammill; son Greg Gammill (Terry), and their three kids, Taylor (Gabi) and their son Declan, Chandler and Chris; daughter Sharon Wilhite (Ron) and their two children, Claire and Cole; and daughter Jill Milliner (Monty) and their children, Hunter (Rebeca) and Kearby. Patt is also survived by two brothers, George and Kent Van Kleeck and many nieces and nephews. Patt is preceded in death by her parents, George and Mary Van Kleeck, as well as brother Loren Van Kleeck.
There will be a celebration of her life on Saturday, July 11, at 2 p.m. at Centerpoint Church, 2772 Cornerstone Drive, Pagosa Springs, Colo.
Memorial donations may be made to the humane society of your choice.