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Patricia Anne (Gallagher) Starkey

Patricia Anne (Gallagher) Starkey

Patricia Anne (Gallagher) Starkey, 87, of Smith Mountain Lake, VA, passed from this life Friday, July 30, 2021, in Wirtz, Virginia.

Pat was a St. Valentine’s baby, born February 14, 1934, in Philadelphia, PA, the youngest of four children of Edward Ignatius and Mary Elizabeth (Lammers) Gallagher. After graduating Holy Child Academy in Philadelphia, she attended Chestnut Hill College, also in Philadelphia. She graduated with a degree in Chemistry in 1955. While at Chestnut Hill, she met her beloved husband, Bartholomew John (Bart) Starkey, who was attending nearby Villanova. They began their 65-year marriage on June 18, 1955.

Pat had three defining threads in her life. First, she was a devout and pious Catholic woman throughout her life. This was manifested outwardly through her years of dedication to groups such as the Parkersburg Catholic Ladies Auxiliary, St. Margaret Mary Parish choir, the Wednesday Women’s Group at Resurrection Parish, and her long-time participation in Christ Renews His Parish ministry. Her faith was intensely personal as well; she always strove to be more Christ-like, demonstrated through her thoughts, words, and deeds.

The second thread was the love and devotion she gave and shared with her husband, Bart. Together, they raised six children, going through the ups and downs of life always together; moving from Portsmouth, VA to Cleveland, OH to Wilmington, DE to Orange, TX to Vienna WV and finally Smith Mountain Lake, VA. Bart always wanted to see over the horizon, Pat always made sure they had what they needed for the next adventure.

The final thread was her family. She was selfless in raising her children, extended that love to her sons and daughters-in-law, relished time with her grandchildren, and cherished her many nieces and nephews. In her heart, too, she treasured as family the many friends and confidantes she made throughout her life.

She was also a teacher, first in Portsmouth, VA immediately after marriage, and then again later, when her children had grown, at Parkersburg Catholic High School.

She is survived by her six loving children, Mary Beth (Joe) Dickey, of Clover, SC; John (Nancy McKitrick) of Snellville, GA; Katherine (Brad) Rings of Wirtz, VA; Neal (Stacy Hodges) of Roswell, GA; Thomas of Richmond, VA; Theresa (John) Moritz of Charlotte, NC; 12 grandchildren; and many dear nephews, nieces, and other close family members. In addition to her parents, two sisters and brother, she was preceded in death by her husband, Bart, in December 2020, one infant daughter, Margaret Mary, and one grandson, Joshua Neal Starkey.

There will be a wake at 7 pm on Sunday, August 8, followed by a funeral on Monday, August 9, at 11:30 am, at Resurrection Catholic Church, Moneta, VA, with interment immediately following in the church cemetery. A reception will follow thereafter. All are welcome. Arrangements are being handled by Burch-Messier Funeral Home, Bedford, VA; condolences may be left at Burch-Messier.com. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made on Pat’s behalf to the Renovation Fund at Resurrection Catholic Church (resurrectioncatholic.org), Smith Mountain Lake Good Neighbors (smlgoodneighbors.org), or Parkersburg Catholic Schools (parkersburgcatholic.com).

The family would like to express their appreciation to Runk & Pratt Senior Living Community in Westlake, VA, for the compassionate care provided to Pat over the last years of her life.

Arrangements by Burch-Messier Funeral Home, Bedford, 540-586-7360.