Details for Mary (Pat) Patricia Sheehan


Mary (Pat) Patricia Sheehan March 17, 1938 - October 7, 2021 Mary Patricia Sheehan died on October 7, 2021 following a brief illness. She was born on St. Patrick's Day (March 17) in 1938 in Salem, Nebraska. She was the first daughter born to Frank and Helen (Babb) Sheehan. She was known as Pat to all her family and friends. She grew up on a farm with her two older brothers, Michael and Richard (Dick) and her younger sister Caroline. Pat loved farm life. She helped in the fields and loved driving tractors and raising cattle. In 1956, Pat graduated from Verdon High School in Verdon, Nebraska. She decided to follow in her mother's footsteps and become a teacher. She graduated from Peru State College with a teaching degree and taught for a few years in Nebraska at a small, one room schoolhouse before moving to Nevada. Her first teaching assignment in Nevada was in Montello, where she made many lifelong friends. She then moved to Elko and taught at Northside Elementary School for 34 years. Pat's real passion was teaching. She loved teaching her students the fundamentals of reading, writing, and arithmetic. But anyone who spent any time with Pat knows that learning from Pat always included fun. Checkers, chess, and card games were incorporated as learning tools, making the concepts of numbers and arithmetic no longer scary, but fun. Every year on her birthday, Pat would dress up like an Irish leprechaun and dye her hair green. She would take her students on a scavenger hunt and make the entire day an adventure. Anyone who was lucky enough to have been able to spend even a short time around Pat will remember her love of fun and love for life. Pat was an avid traveler, visiting many exotic locations around the world. She would bring back not only trinkets, but stories that would make you want to join her on the next adventure. Pat would also share the story of her trip by presenting her favorite friends with an article of clothing that she had worn during the trip (sometimes several days in a row). She felt it was important to give the garment prior to washing so you could experience the smells of the location. The more fragrant the garment, the more cherished the gift. Pat was also very creative and was always giving her family and friends handmade and unique items as gifts. If your gift was not from one of her recent trips, it was handmade and crafted by Pat. If you were ever lucky enough in the 70's to go ghost town dump diving with Pat that was a good day indeed. Along with travel and teaching, Pat loved many other things, including bowling (she won many individual and team trophies throughout the state). She also loved playing bridge. Pat was a devoted Catholic and went to church several times a week. Every day was a good day to go to church according to Pat. In the early 1970s, Pat purchased the old Blume Ranch in Lamoille with a friend and renamed it the Patchwork Place. True to its name, the Patchwork Place was pieced together over time, making it special in more ways than one. It quickly became a favorite summer location for many of her friends and family. The Patchwork Place allowed Pat to bring those closest to her together, creating an environment of joy and a sense of community that outlasted any single gathering there. Pat was someone who embodied a love of life and an understanding of what was important - the simplicity of living a life around those you love. Pat was the type of person that could organize the best faculty gatherings in all of Nevada, but was also the go to person for a private therapy session. Pat lived her life "The Irish Way: Always remembering to forget those troubles that pass away, but never forgetting to remember the blessings that visit each day." Pat is survived by her sister Caroline McKay and nine nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, her brother Michael, her brother Richard, and three nephews. The family would like to sincerely thank Alice Digenan, Frankie Correa, and Jill and Mark List for their help and care during Pat's illness. Donations can be made to Northside Elementary School Library, 1645 Sewell Drive, Elko, Nv 89801 A celebration of life will be held in the spring, hopefully on St. Patrick's Day.



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