Patricia Price, 78, of Tullahoma, passed away Thursday. Trish, as she was known to family and friends, was born and raised on the family farm near Shop Springs, Tennessee in Wilson County, the third of four children. The summer she turned 15, Patricia contracted Paralytic Polio and was hospitalized for six months at Vanderbilt with support from the March of Dimes. Returning home in back and leg braces, she was able to graduate from Watertown High School before going on to complete a Bachelor of Science degree in Vocational Home Economics from Tennessee Technological University in 1958 and a Master of Science degree in Family Living and Child Development from the University of Tennessee in 1967. She taught Vocational Home Economics for 30 years, most of that time at Watertown High School, receiving an award as Outstanding Young Educator.
In addition to teaching, Patricia helped fundraise for the March of Dimes and encouraged her students to participate in service projects through Beta Club and Future Homemaker of America. She served as president of the Wilson County Education Association, taught consumer buying to food stamp recipients in the summers, volunteered with Polio Heroes, and taught Sunday school at Bethel Church of Christ and Watertown Church of Christ. Through her influence she was able to encourage students to reach their potential and promote interest in higher education to those with academic promise.
After retiring to Tullahoma in 1990, Patricia led a ladies’ small group at Highland Hills Church of Christ and served for five years on the city’s ADA board at the request of the mayor. After fighting breast cancer in 1996, she volunteered with Bosom Buddies, a local breast cancer advocacy.
Despite battling the long-term effects of polio, Patricia lived independently for most of her life, owning homes in Watertown and Tullahoma. She moved to Morning Point Assisted Living in 2003 and drove her power wheelchair across the street to Highland Hills Church of Christ to remain an active member. She moved to Life Care Nursing Home in 2013. Everywhere she lived, Patricia had a positive impact on her community as well as her caregivers through her contagious zest for life. Patricia had a passion for quilting and other handiwork. Over the years she has had prize winning quilts. She gave her quilts and hand pieced items to her friends and family as well as donating handmade items for fundraising efforts.
Patricia was preceded in death by her loving parents, Earl Anderson Price, Sr. and Willette Green Price. She is survived by her siblings, Jacqueline Price Hatcher of Franklin, Marjorie Price (Cleve) Humphrey of Harvest, Alabama, and Earl Anderson (Tommye) Price, Jr. of Winchester as well as her nieces and nephews, Beth Hatcher Wallace, George Hatcher, Charles Hatcher, Lucy Hatcher, Jim Hatcher, Currun Humphrey, Ann Humphrey Garwick, Janet Humphrey Taylor, Kathryn Price Holder, Judith Price Ruch and Bryan Price and a host of great nieces and nephews.
A memorial service honoring Patricia will be held on Sunday, November 2, 2014 at Highland Hills Church of Christ. Visitation with family will be from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. with the service beginning at 3:30.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the American Cancer Society or the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.