“Make new friends but keep the old,
One is silver and the other gold.”
Pat Anderson made her way toward heaven at sunrise on Aug. 4, 2018. She was the quintessential happy camper who lived out the philosophy of that Girl Scout song. Sparkling, athletic and smart, she knew how to make and keep friends.
Pat was born in Maryville, Tenn. to Virginia and Jean McMurray, and grew up in Oxford, where she graduated from University High and Ole Miss. Her father made her take Home Ec. which she considered a waste of time because scouting and outdoor cooking were more her forte. (She did later become an accomplished and generous baker.) Pat also earned master’s degrees in kinesiology and counseling.
Those who knew her well would not be surprised that she was a drummer in the marching band or that she painted purple spots on a white horse when she was the archery and canoeing counselor at Camp Waldemar. Shortly after that escapade, Pat began a 40-year career with Houston ISD as a coach and guidance counselor followed by eight years as a counselor and lower school chaplain at Presbyterian School. She is remembered fondly by hundreds of former students whom she coached to winning swimming seasons.
It was at Lanier Junior High that the lovely coach met the handsome history teacher, Don Anderson, married him, and had two daughters.
“This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine”
Retirement gave Pat the opportunity to deepen her service to the community. She had already begun her service as a Stephen minister to the sick at First Presbyterian Church and continued it as a member of St. Luke’s Methodist Church. She also volunteered at Amazing Place, Nehemiah Center and the Emergency Aid Coalition of Houston.
She is preceded in death by her husband of 45 years and her mother and father. She is survived by her daughter Mary Reese and her husband Bart Reece; her daughter Ann-Claire Anderson and her husband David Schleicher; grandchildren Berkeley, Braxton, Brittney, Gracie and Kaeden; brother Jim McMurray and wife Jan; brother Michael McMurray, nieces Pam Lizar and Susan McMurray; nephews Jack Lizar and David McMurray; George Blair and hundreds of other cherished friends. And Pearl, the beautiful and ornery cat.
The memorial service was held at 11 a.m. on Friday, Aug. 10, 2018, at St. Luke’s Methodist Church, Houston, Texas, with the Rev. Bill Denham officiating.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a gift in Pat’s honor to Amazing Place, 3735 Drexel, Houston, 77027; or the Stephen Ministry c/o St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, 3471 Westheimer Rd., Houston, 77027.
“Day is done, Gone the sun,
From the lakes, from the hills, from the skies
All is well
God is nigh.”