ALAMOSA— Patricia Ann Gilmore Smith, 88, was born Aug. 9, 1930 in Salida, Colo., the daughter of Mable L. Richards and Dewey R. Gilmore. She died Jan. 21, 2019 at the San Luis Care Center in Alamosa.
Her early years were spent in Hooper and Monte Vista. The family moved to Alamosa. Pat graduated from Alamosa High School in 1948 and then attended Colorado State University (Colorado A & M) for a short time.
She then followed her passion in the fashion industry and attended the Ray Vogue School of Fashion Merchandising & Design in Chicago, Ill., after which she returned to Colorado and began her career in merchandising with the Denver Dry Goods Company. Pat then worked for several exclusive dress shops in the Denver area.
Pat returned to Alamosa in 1972 to work at Leon’s, an exclusive dress shop in the city. She was not satisfied and decided that a new career was needed. She returned to school to learn more about the business field.
During this time, she was reunited with a high school friend, Thales Smith from La Jara. They soon fell in love and were married on Jan. 4, 1976 at her parent’s home in Alamosa. She was his “Sweetheart.” With this union, one of her biggest pluses was that “she gained three lovely daughters the easy way,” as she would jokingly share with friends. Thales and the girls affectionately called her Tricia for short. She loved the farming and ranching way of life, as it was an experience that provided a way for her to do things she would have never dreamed of doing like helping deliver a baby calf in the middle of the night.
Tricia still had a passion for continued education and a career. She became a non-traditional student at Adams State College later in life and graduated receiving her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Accounting in 1989. She had the pleasure of graduating with her granddaughter and niece at the same ceremony. She studied diligently for her CPA exam and worked in accounting along with farming/ranching.
Thales and Tricia bought an RV and began to do some traveling. They made friends everywhere they went and cherished those friendships. Together they made the decision to retire from farming and ranching and move to the Creede area. The original plan was to just build a small cabin, but the plans continued to change and before long their home was built and they decided to move and become “Creedites.” While in Creede, they ran TNT Gravel Products. Santa Maria Reservoir and Trout Club was a magical place that they shared with many. Every family member and many friends had the experience to enjoy time there.
Declining health required that both Tricia and Thales move to the Legacy Assisted Living at Monte Vista, and they resided there for several years. They then transferred to the San Luis Care Center when health declined more. They were separated with different care needs, but Tricia embraced her life with the San Luis Care Center community until her death there. She woke every day with a smile, acceptance and purpose. She loved the residents and caregivers deeply.
Her passion was enjoying the mountain beauty and lifestyle. She loved feeding and watching hummingbirds and could tell you details about each species. She enjoyed fashion, gardening, DeGrazia and all fine art including the special jewelry that Thales designed for her, fishing at Santa Maria, knitting, reading and bingo.
Patricia is survived by her sister, Marilyn Kelloff of Highlands Ranch, Colo.; children Lois (Paul) Widhalm and Jackie (Tim) Scheidegger, both of Alamosa and Ruth Ann (Gordon) Lowe of Orem, Utah; her grandchildren Lori (Gregg) Maul, Kristie (Joe) Reynolds, Brad (Trish) Widhalm, Justin (Kurt) Scheidegger; Stacie (Chris) Steele, Garrett (Jessica) Lowe, Brooke (Chris) Christley, Ryan Stevens, Stephanie (Bradon) Godfrey, Trevor (Lisa) Stevens; as well as 16 great grandchildren, two great great grandchildren and numerous extended family and friends.
Patricia was preceded in death by her husband Thales H. Smith and her parents.
The request for no services will be honored at this time. A private family ceremony will take place in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be sent to the Rogers Family Mortuary, 205 State Avenue, Alamosa, CO 81101, and the proceeds will be donated to Friends of the Colorado Talking Book Library in her honor. The family wishes to express special thanks and gratitude to the Legacy and San Luis Care Center staff for their ongoing care and support. Online condolences, tributes and remarks for Pat’s family may be left at www.RogersFunerals.com. Services are in the care of Rogers Family Mortuary of Alamosa.