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Patty Purcifull Godfrey

April 9, 1937 July 10, 2019
Patty Purcifull Godfrey
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Obituary for Patty Purcifull Godfrey

Patty (Purcifull) Godfrey
1937 – 2019
Patty Purcifull Godfrey, born April 9, 1937, passed away peacefully at her Ottawa home on July 10, 2019 with her husband, sons and faithful caregiver, Maggie Erisman, at her side. Mrs. Godfrey was born in Nashville, TN and was the younger of two children of Chauncey O. Purcifull and Mildred Clendenen Purcifull. She attended Ottawa Township High School and graduated from Purdue University where she was a proud member and lifelong supporter of Delta Gamma sorority.

Following graduation Patty taught high school chemistry and biology in Carmel, California before returning to Ottawa where she married Thomas F. Godfrey on July 22, 1959. She became an instant mother on that day to Tom’s two boys, Philip and Michael. She was exceptionally devoted to her sons and supported their endeavors and dreams unconditionally.

Patty was a dedicated friend, successful businesswoman and world traveler who was widely appreciated and admired for her wonderful sense of humor, indefatigable work ethic, remarkable perseverance and positive attitude in the face of difficulty, and great enthusiasm for life in general. Patty knew her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and was member of the United Church of Christ, formerly First Congregational Church, where she was the chairman of the church investments committee. Patty had a long and distinguished career with local realtor – Haeberle & Associates – where in 1988 she had been honored by the Illini Valley Board of Realtors as Associate of the Year for outstanding service and contribution to the real estate profession. Patty had served on numerous Boards of Directors including the Ottawa Preservation Commission, where she had championed the design and development of the Lincoln & Douglas statue in Washington Square; First National Bank of Ottawa; Illinois Valley Community College; Ottawa YMCA and Governing Board of the Community Hospital of Ottawa. Patty was honored by the local Chamber of Commerce as “Ambassador of the Year” in 1987, 1991 and 2003. In 1994 she had received the Chamber’s distinguished “Leo Parkerson Award”. Patty had also served as President of the Community Hospital Auxiliary, Shabbona PTA, Ottawa Ambassadors, Child Welfare Guild, OHS American Field Service and Main Street USA.

Patty loved her community and was a tireless volunteer who was involved in many philanthropic efforts. She had devoted herself entirely in every project and was totally dedicated to each mission. She was a member of many organizations including the Child Welfare Guild, Ottawa Area Chamber of Commerce, Reddick Mansion Association, 4M Investment Group, Helia Book Club, Ottawa Art League, Ottawa Boat Club, Ottawa Sesquicentennial Committee, International Association of Culinary Professionals, Starved Rock Yacht Club, Chicago Culinary Guild and Union League Club of Chicago. Patty was well known as a gourmet cook who passed her love of good food on to her sons. She was the Editor & Chairman of both the Shabbona Cookbook and Pink Ladies Hospital Auxiliary Cookbook.

In 2014 Mrs. Godfrey and her husband began to require around-the-clock caregivers whose dedication and service made them truly part of the family. The family is indebted to these compassionate and thoughtful individuals: Ms. Ewa Linhoff, Ms. Kelly Haun, Ms. Maggie Erisman and Ms. Dorota Wiacek.
Admired for her bright energy and big smile, Patty was well loved by family, friends, coworkers and citizens for her engaging and thoughtful spirit. She will remain forever in our thoughts and prayers. Mrs. Godfrey was preceded in death by her parents; her brother Robert O. Purcifull and her infant daughter, Gwyneth. She is survived by her loving husband of 60 years Tom; her sons Philip (Ellen) and Michael (Lisa); her grandchildren, Sarah Godfrey Trahan (Christopher), Margaret Purcifull Godfrey & Thomas Fielding Godfrey, II; and her great grandson Peter Glenn Trahan.

A visitation will be held in her honor at the Mueller Funeral Home on Friday, July 19th from 4-7 pm. A private family service will be held, with Chaplain E. Reeves Flint, CDR, USN officiating, followed by a private burial at the Ottawa Avenue Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to the Ottawa Pavilion.

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4:00 PM 7/19/2019 4:00:00 PM - 7:00 PM 7/19/2019 7:00:00 PM
Mueller Funeral Home, Ottawa

800 First Avenue
Ottawa, IL 61350

Mueller Funeral Home, Ottawa
800 First Avenue Ottawa 61350 IL
United States

Cemetery Details


Ottawa Avenue Cemetery Final Resting Place

1601 Ottawa Avenue
Ottawa, IL 61350

1601 Ottawa Avenue Ottawa 61350 IL
United States

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