Patricia Louise Birch passed away, with friends by her side, at the age of 86 on November 7 2023. She was born on Sept. 22, 1937, in The District of Columbia. Her parents were George Birch and Alice Johnson. She had one brother. All of her family members preceded her in death.
She lived an amazing life, serving 26 years in the Air Force, and traveling the world. She joined the Air Force Jan 1, 1959, and retired January 1, 1985 as a Lieutenant Colonel and Chief Anesthetist Flight Nurse. She served for a time in England and loved it there. She served as a flight nurse in Vietnam. She had a lot of interesting stories about those days. She was an anesthesia student in the Air Force, and became a flight nurse anesthetist.
In 1977 she graduated from the University of Texas with a Bachelor of Science and nursing degree. She then studied to become a Certified Nurse Anesthetist. Patty was very intelligent and had a thirst for knowledge. In 1987 she graduated from the University of Texas with a Masters in the science of nursing. Though she had retired from the military, the military was always a part of her. She did not hesitate to pull rank when needed. She had a quick wit and a quirky sense of humor. She spoke her mind always stating things in simple facts. If you did not understand, you knew your intelligence was in question. She was hard, but kind. She cared deeply for the people in her life.
Patty loved to travel and had been all over the world. Her favorite place was Australia. She said it was the most dangerous with lots of deadly animals. She went on many cruises which she really enjoyed. She had two bucket list dreams she did not achieve. One was to go to Mt Everest and the other was to go to the Arctic. She spoke of those things often, not with regret just with a laugh.
Patty loved animals of all kinds. She rescued many elderly dogs and gave them the best life for whatever time they had left. She donated generously to Friends of Forks animals, WAG, and many other institutions. She was an extremely giving, and caring person. She often gave anonymously as she wanted no recognition.
Patty worked at Forks Community Hospital from 1997 until she retired in 2011. She then became a hospital board member and served on the board until her death. The hospital and the community were very important to her. She devoted much of herself to both. Patty will be buried at sea by the Navy, an irony that gave her lots of laughs. She requested no services and we will honor those wishes. She will be greatly missed.