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Patricia Ann BaldwinAugust 14, 1938 ~ August 22, 2017 (age 79)
Patricia Ann Hutchcraft Besant Baldwin, born August 14, 1938 to Everett Carl Hutchcraft (d.1977) and Vella Faye Wood Hutchcraft (d. 2010). She is survived by her sibling, Gary Carl Hutchcraft; her children Theresa Besant Petko (Robert), Michael Besant (Kenda) and Sheila Besant Farley; grandchildren, Eric and Anna Petko; Adam, Nic and Zac Besant; Mathew Farley; niece Angie Hutchcraft
Born in her parents’ home in Malden, a small town located in the boot heel of Missouri. Patricia headed north with her parents for the automotive industry in Flint, Michigan
She was a cheerleader for Mt Morris HS where she met Jack (John Richard) Besant. They had a simple wedding and were blessed with their first child Theresa. Soon after, they headed to California to start a life with the US Marines. They had great adventures exploring the West Coast, including Mexico, but their home state of Michigan called them back.
Pat and Jack had two more children, Michael (Mike) and Sheila before settling into their family home on Welch Boulevard in Flint. There, Pat focused on raising her children and a making their unique home a beautiful and inviting place for family, friends, and neighbors. She supported her husband through his education and his shenanigans. She later put her styling skills to work for a prominent Flint florist. In the mid 1970's, Pat and family moved to the suburbs of Clio, Michigan where they built a new home with a blank canvas. Again, Patricia put her artistic talents to work, decorating and landscaping their new home with design partner, Vella, her mother.
As her children moved on from the home, and she and Jack called an end to their marriage of 20+ years, she spent several years working in property management, with a special focus for the elderly and senior housing.
Patricia remarried in the late 1980's to Don Baldwin. They spent many of their years traveling the state collecting antiques and participating at area flea markets. At one point they purchased a peanut roaster and sold hot roasted peanuts at many market events.
Following Don’s death, Pat focused on caring for her mother and spending time with her children and grandchildren.
Pat was extremely close to her mother, and prior to her mother's passing, they would often travel to visit family. They were fondly known as the "Traveling Grandmothers."
As her mother’s health declined, Pat remained by her side, caring for her to the end.
Pat’s later travels included visits to her daughter Sheila and Grandson Mathew in Central Illinois For these trips she would travel with one of her dearest friends, Delphine Gray. They became known as "Thelma and Louise" for the mischief that would occur on those trips. She especially enjoyed the summer visits, as the crops where ready to harvest, and the sweet corn-her one request at every meal.
Pat’s grandchildren had very special times with her. Adam, the oldest, would discover his love of model kits when grandma bought him his first kit. Grandsons Nic and Zac would play airport runway guides helping Pat back out of the driveway, as well as sharing with her their mini farm. She attended many of their baseball games with son Mike coaching from the cage.
She went on vacations with her grandson Mathew, visiting Mount Rushmore and her family in Missouri, as well as a trip to the Bahamas. Each trip was filled with stories that will be told again and again.
In her recent years Pat received great care from daughter in-law Kenda including assisting in her the next transition of her life.
She especially loved visiting her grandchildren, Eric and Anna (children of Theresa and Bob Petko) in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Little did she know then that the last chapter of her life would bring her back to Grand Rapids. She marveled at the abundance of flowering trees in the spring and overall beauty of the city. Driving downtown on Michigan Street, she kept repeating “I live in a beautiful city.” Similarly, during her hospital stays at Blodgett Hospital, she appreciated the lush surroundings and the high level of care she received. Surrounded by the love and comfort of her family during her last days, she continued her journey with peace knowing that she would see them again.
Pat was surrounded by her all of her family in her final days, celebrating the life she had and the legacy she leaves behind.
The family wishes to acknowledge the Spectrum Hospice staff who guided both Pat and her family in her final journey. Their knowledge, experience and empathy gave us much comfort and peace. Private family services were held. Memorial contributions in memory of Pat may be made to Spectrum Health Hospice.
Spectrum Health Hospice
750 Fuller Avenue NE, Grand Rapids MI 49503