Patricia A. (Willette) Gafner, 87, of Escanaba, passed away on Tuesday, January 31, 2017 at her home surrounded by her loving family.
She was born on March 11, 1929 in Gladstone, the daughter of Albert and Alvina (Carlson) Willette. Patricia graduated from Gladstone High School in 1947.
On October 2, 1948, Patricia married Charles Gafner in Gladstone.
Patricia was a member of a local Red Hat group and was an avid bridge player in the Escanaba Bridge Marathon, plus loved playing with her Wednesday afternoon foursome. She enjoyed reading, gardening, sewing, quilting, knitting, and needlework. Patricia was a wonderful cook who served fabulous holiday dinners for her large family who were her pride and joy. She also loved dancing, especially the jitterbug with Charlie, her partner of 68 years.
Among the survivors include her husband, Charles Gafner; children, M. Lynn (Jim) Soderberg, Edward (Christine) Gafner, David Gafner, Karen (Mark) Gardipee, Paula (Ron) Kreiter, Laura Richards, Peter (Debra) Gafner, James (Christine) Gafner; grandchildren, Melissa (Bill) McBerkowitz, Trisha (Tom Bissell) Miller, Craig (Amy) Miller, Steven (Patty) Miller, Megan Soderberg, Scott (Tina) Gafner, Erick (Briony) Gafner, Adam (Amber) Gafner, Erin (Eric) Hiddema, Erica (Christian) Picard, Jonathon (Marissa) Rolig, Ryan Kreiter, Patricia Kreiter, Daniel Kapalin, Andrew Kapalin, Sara Kapalin, Katrina Gafner, Peter Gafner II, Allysa Rogers and Sydney Gafner, 24 great grandchildren; siblings, Suzanne (John) Chansler and Mary Carrington; and 13 nieces and nephews.
In addition to her parents, Patricia was preceded in death by brother, Albert Willette; sister, Marilyn Willette; sister in law, Bernadette Willette; and nephews, Michael Carrington, Patrick Willette and Charles Willette.
Visitation will be held on Monday, February 6th from 11:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. at the Crawford Funeral Home in Escanaba. A Mass of Christian Burial will follow at 2:30 p.m. at St. Joseph and St. Patrick Church with Rev. Eric Olson officiating. A meal will follow in the church hall.
Entombment will take place in the Gardens of Rest Mausoleum.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the family, local charities will be decided upon at a later date.
The Crawford Funeral Homes are assisting the Gafner family.