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Elizabeth ‘Betty’ Patrick, 100, Bloomington

Elizabeth ‘Betty’ Lazar Patrick, 100, Bloomington, died Saturday, Oct. 19, 2013, at Golden Living Center in Bloomington, her residence from mid-January 2011 until her passing. She had lived previously in Bloomington at the home of her son and daughter-in-law, John J. Patrick and Patricia Grant Patrick.

At the time of her birth, May 7, 1913, Elizabeth Lazar belonged to a Romanian family in Transylvania, a region of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire. During the First World War (1914-1918), Transylvania was a battleground where little Elizabeth “Savetuca” Lazar observed soldiers of opposing armies move through the streets of Danes (Danesh), her hometown near the city of Sighisoara. After the war, Transylvania became a province of Romania, as it is today.

In the spring of 1922, Savetuca went with her family to Constanta, a Romanian city on the western coast of the Black Sea. She boarded a cargo ship bound for America. The vessel eventually arrived at Ellis Island, gateway to America. After a short stay in New York City, Savetuca traveled with her parents to East Chicago, Ind., at the southern end of Lake Michigan. The family resided in a neighborhood filled with immigrants from eastern and central Europe. During the summer of 1922, nine-year-old Savetuca was on her way to becoming Betty, in pursuit of an American dream.

Elizabeth “Betty” Lazar quickly learned English and excelled in her studies at school. She also maintained fluency in her first language, Romanian. Her mother Maria, Aunt Rebecca Muntean, and Aunt Elizabeth Lazar guided and protected her. Betty graduated with honors from Washington High School in 1931 and went to work as a bookkeeper for a small business in East Chicago.

On Aug. 6, 1934, Betty Lazar married John W. Patrick and moved to Atlanta, Ga., where her husband was employed at Oglethorpe University. She had met her future husband in 1933 during his annual summer visit to family and friends in his former hometown of East Chicago.

Elizabeth “Betty” Patrick joyfully settled into her new life at Oglethorpe University. Her husband was a professor in the physical education department and head coach of the university’s football team. Her first child, John Joseph Patrick, was born on April 14, 1935. She directed her time and energy to raising her son.

In mid-1943, Betty and her husband moved back to their former hometown in Lake County, northwest Indiana. Betty gave birth to Mary Kay Patrick, September 7, 1946, and she continued her commitment as mother and wife. She was also supportive of her husband’s professional ambitions, as he advanced to Associate Superintendent of Schools in East Chicago.

After her husband’s death in 1970, Betty worked as a teaching assistant at a Catholic elementary school in the Indiana Harbor section of East Chicago. She excelled in teaching Spanish-speaking children to read and write in English.

After retiring from her job in East Chicago, Elizabeth Patrick lived with her daughter and son-in-law, Mary Kay and Jack Ragan, first in Cannel, Ind., and later in Scottsdale, Ariz. She also resided a few months each year in Bloomington with her son and daughter-in law, John and Patricia Grant Patrick. She embraced the role of grandmother and great-grandmother, and she never stopped being a caring and loving mother.

Elizabeth Patrick’s surviving family members include her son, John J. Patrick (wife, Patricia); her daughter, Mary Kay Patrick Ragan (husband, Jack); four grandchildren, Rebecca Patrick Shipman (husband, Chris) of Nashville, Barbara Kay Patrick May (husband, Jan) of Indianapolis, John Ragan (wife, Ashley) of Phoenix, Ariz., and Matthew Ragan of Scottsdale, Ariz.; five great-grandchildren, Rachel Patrick of Bloomington and Angwin, Calif., Abigail “Abby” May of Indianapolis, Jack, William Patrick, and Lauren Kay Ragan of Phoenix, Ariz.; and her first cousin, Ray Lazar (wife, Clare) of Griffith.

During the past five years, as her health and physical condition declined, Elizabeth was very grateful for the loving care and friendship given to her by Jeanne Deckard, her caregiver, and Joanne Jackowiak of St. Charles Borromeo Church, who brought Holy Communion to her weekly. Elizabeth was also comforted by the regular visits and cards from her nephews and nieces.  Elizabeth also appreciated the high quality of care given to her by the management and staff of Golden Living Center.

Allen Funeral Home, 4155 South Old Highway 37, Bloomington, is handling funeral arrangements. A Catholic funeral Mass will be celebrated at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Oct. 23, at St. Charles Borromeo Church in Bloomington; the Rev. Tom Kovatch will be the celebrant.

Friends can call at the church prior to the Mass from 10-11 a.m. Wednesday.

Elizabeth will be buried next to her husband, John at Chapel Lawn Memorial Gardens in Schererville, (Lake County).

Online condolences can be sent to the family at

See Full List »

Lillian (Anderson) Wentworth Henderson, 87, Brown County

William Emmett Fisher, 73, Elizabethtown
  Father of William “Mark” (Marissa) Fisher of Nashville

Margaret (Stanley) Whitaker, 80, Morgantown
  Wife of Rawlins Whitaker of Morgantown

  • August 30
    Golf scramble to benefit BCHS athletics set
    1 p.m. Salt Creek Golf Retreat, 2359 State Road 46 East
  • August 30
    Mission trip presentation at Fruitdale church
    2 p.m. Midway Church,
  • September 3
    7 to 9 p.m. Library, 205 N. Locust Lane
  • September 3
    Future of rural places subject of talk
    5:30 p.m. Brown County Inn, 51 State Road 46 East
  • September 5
    BCHS class of 2005 reunion slated
    3 to 6 p.m., 8 p.m. Deer Run Park; Salt Creek Golf Retreat, 2359 State Road 46 East
  • September 6
    Read to dogs at the library
    2 to 3:30 p.m. Library, 205 N. Locust Lane
  • September 8
    Peaceful Valley Heritage meeting
    6:30 p.m. BCCF, 209 S. Van Buren St.
  • September 8
    Retired teachers
    noon Hotel Nashville, 245 N. Jefferson St.
  • September 9
    Nashville Town Council
    6 p.m. Town Hall, 200 Commercial St.
  • September 12
    Free community breakfast at Sprunica church
    8 to 10 a.m. Sprunica Baptist Church, 3902 Sprunica Road
  • September 18
    BucCornEar Festival fundraiser returns
    4 to 8 p.m. JTFD, 4831 Helmsburg Road, Helmsburg
  • September 18
    'A Miracle for You' services with evangelist Jerry Holland
    7:30 p.m. The Pentecostals
  • September 19
    BucCornEar Festival fundraiser returns
    8 a.m. to 8 p.m. JTFD, 4831 Helmsburg Road, Helmsburg
  • September 19
    'A Miracle for You' services with evangelist Jerry Holland
    6 p.m. The Pentecostals
  • September 20
    'A Miracle for You' services with evangelist Jerry Holland
    2 p.m. The Pentecostals
  • September 28
    American history DVD to play at library
    1 p.m. Library, 205 N. Locust Lane
  • October 4
    Read to a dog at the library
    2 to 3:30 p.m. Library, 205 N. Locust Lane