Patricia was born March 14, 1939, in Denver, Colo. She grew up in Colorado and the western Idaho area, near Caldwell and Nampa, attending elementary school there. Her family moved to Bend when she was in eighth grade, and she graduated from Bend High School in 1957. She was a member of the Eagles drill team and loved to dance the jitterbug. After high school, she briefly attended OTI (now OIT) in Klamath Falls to study x-ray technology. After a proposal in a boat while fishing on the Little Deschutes, she married Patrick Allison in Fairbanks, Ala., on Sept. 20, 1959, where he was stationed in the Army working on the Nike missile sites. She worked for a medical clinic in Fairbanks, and in October 1960, they moved back to Bend to help with the family logging business (Allison & Sons Logging). In January 1961, Theresa was born, followed by Mike in May of 1963.
She lived the life of the “Tiny House movement” long before it was popular – living off the grid in small trailer houses, bunk houses, a converted school bus, and an “expando” trailer, cooking on Coleman camp stoves, packing water, and using kerosene lanterns for light as the family spent most of their time in logging camps near Bend and Burns.
In the summer of 1966, the family moved to Hines, space 11, at the Monroe Trailer Park. Patti planted a Colorado blue spruce that you can still see today. It is the tallest tree in the park. In 1971, Patti won a Reader’s Digest contest, $5,000, and with that bonus she was able to furnish the family home they had purchased in Hines. The house had many changes over the years, both inside and out, but was the place she called home until she passed.
Patti was a Cub Scout leader, member of the PTA, room mother, and a stay-at-home mom for many years until she went to work at the Burns Clinic, where she worked for several years. She also served on land-use boards and volunteered at the Senior Center and the Holy Family Catholic Church. After her brother-in-law, Jon, passed away, she went to work full time, assisting the logging business (Allison Logging) by doing bookkeeping, firewatching, parts “gopher”, and whatever was needed. When the logging business changed, she went into business with Mike and Hilda running The Truck Stop, which later became The Truck Shop. She kept busy with grandchildren’s activities, and in 2010, stayed in Portland for several months caring for her mother who was ill.
Patti taught her daughter, daughter-in-law, and granddaughters how to sew, bake, craft and make do with what you had. She taught her son and grandsons how to be good men, and the importance of respecting women. She taught Aaron many things (resulting in him being left-handed), and she spent a great deal of time with Patrick as he was growing up, taking him to fiddling concerts and school activities. She had great political conversations with Dylan, and Rachael loved shopping and trying out recipes with the lady she called “her Grams”. She taught her sisters how to survive and thrive – and the importance of family, no matter how it got created.
She was a strong woman, had a great sense of humor, and enjoyed a good water or shaving cream fight. Even though she could not swim, she went on some interesting boat rides in the ocean and spent a great deal of time on or near the water. She liked to travel to the beach and visited some great places (Mexico, Alaska, Hawaii, New Orleans), and took several East Coast trips with her dear friend, Merilee Young. Though roughing it was how she spent her honeymoon (bear hunting with another Army buddy and Dad), and for many years, tent camping and the outdoors were where she lived. She did prefer her nice bedroom suite with “real” bathroom nearby in recent years. She loved baking more than cooking, although soup was her specialty. She loved the holidays and decorating, sending Christmas cards and getting them, crossword puzzles, reading and trying to grow flowers in Harney County – and ones that the deer wouldn’t eat.
Patricia is survived by her daughter, Theresa K. (Brad) Smith of Oregon City; son, Michael E. (Hilda) Allison of Hines; grandchildren, Aaron P. Smith and fiancé Shannon Riley of Corvallis, Dylan M. Smith of Oregon City; and Rachael and Patrick Allison of Hines. Also surviving her are her sisters, Dodie Howard of Portland, Alice Westphal of Bend, Diann (Snow) Mathews of Littleton, Colo.; brother, Larry (Jane) Wormington of Terrebonne; and numerous nieces, nephews, friends and family.
Patricia was preceded in death by her parents, Woodrow Wormington of Denver, Colo. and Dorothy May (Embry) Wormington of Portland; her husband, Patrick E. Allison of Hines; and grandchildren, Nathan Neil Allison and Lauren Julia Allison of Hines.
Rosary will be held at 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 5, at LaFollette’s Chapel, 332 W. Monroe Street in Burns. Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 6, at the Holy Family Catholic Church, 685 North Fairview Ave. in Burns, followed by a graveside service at the Burns Cemetery. A luncheon and gathering will be held beginning at 2 p.m. at the Burns Elks Lodge, 118 North Broadway Ave. in Burns. Entrées and sides will be provided. If you would like to bring a favorite or purchased baked item or dessert, please do so. (The Elks Lodge will be open at 1:30 p.m. for coffee and tea service for those not attending the graveside service.)
Special thanks to all those who participated in her care; you all know who you are. Erin Gosnell of Harney County Hospice was especially supportive of Patti and her family for many months.
The family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Harney County Hospice, the Harney County Chapter of CAN Cancer, or charity of your choice. They can be mailed to LaFollette’s Chapel, P.O. Box 488, Burns, OR 97720.