Patricia “Pat” Ayers Simpkins Garman, affectionately known as “Papsi” by her family and 17 grandchildren and great-grandchildren, passed away on Wednesday, November 20, 2019.
Born in 1934 and raised in Nashville, Tennessee, Pat was the first-born child of Dr. Thomas Emerson and Katherine Jennings Simpkins. She was a Vanderbilt University Nursing student and a member of Alpha Omicron Pi sorority when she met Lieutenant Richard “Butch” Garman. Married for 64 years, Butch and Pat began their family while Butch was serving in the United States Army in Alaska. Following Butch’s military service, the couple would go on to live in Nashville, Chattanooga, Louisville, and Bloomington, Illinois before finally settling in Murfreesboro Tennessee. Over the years, the couple traveled extensively in Europe, the Middle East and even back to Alaska.
An arts enthusiast, Pat performed for years with the Sweet Adelines and the Middle Tennessee Choral Society. She was an avid watercolor painter and the designated family photographer, amassing thousands of pictures and many cameras. She volunteered at St. Joseph’s Medical Center in Bloomington, Illinois and delivered many Meals on Wheels in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. A life-long Christian, Pat was a devoted member of North Boulevard Church of Christ in Murfreesboro who loved her Christian brothers, sisters, and ministers, both there and at the Four Seasons Church of Christ in Bloomington.
Papsi will be remembered as a loving, supportive, and Christ-centered wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother, as well as a consummate hostess, who relished time with her family and friends and who set an example of strength and virtue for young and old alike.
She was preceded in death by husband Richard William Garman, daughter Patricia Lynn Garman Au and son John Jennings Garman.
She is survived by sons Richard William (Patricia) Garman, Jr., M.D. of Brentwood, TN and David Emerson (Deborah) Garman of Murfreesboro, TN; son-in-law Gregory (Suanne) Au of Melbourne Beach, FL; and daughter-in-law Rhonda Mayse Garman of Columbia, TN; brother Thomas Emerson (Marguerite) Simpkins, Jr., M.D. of Birmingham, AL; and sisters Kay Simpkins (Donald) Duncan of Bloomfield Hills, MI and Anne Simpkins (Jerry) Goad of Brentwood, TN; grandchildren Jennifer Garman (Jason) Rowlett, Rebecca Jean Garman, William Baird (Brittany) Garman, Ashley (Michael) Garman Cook, Ryan Richard (Megan) Au, Katherine Garman (Justin) Morgaman, Benton Andrew Au and Katherine Garman (Ben) Killion; and great-grandchildren Madison Taylor Morgaman, Autumn Leigh Rowlett, Amelia Reagan Morgaman, Bryson Miles Au, Lily Grace Morgaman, Emerson Anne Killion, Elise Jennings Killion, Harper Lynn Cook and Preston Garman Au.
Visitation is scheduled for Saturday, November 23, 2019 beginning at 12 noon at Woodfin Memorial Chapel in Murfreesboro, with a memorial service to follow at 2:00 p.m. Interment will be at nearby Evergreen Cemetery, with Pat’s grandsons and spouses of granddaughters serving as pallbearers. Dear family friend and author, F. LaGard Smith will officiate the service.
The family deeply appreciates the care and compassion Papsi received from the nurses and staff in the Assisted Living and Advanced Care units at Stones River Manor in Murfreesboro.
Expressions of sympathy may be made by contributing to the Lynn Garman Au College of Nursing Scholarship Fund at the University of Kentucky, (University of Kentucky, College of Nursing, Attention: Ms. Kerrie Moore, 315 College of Nursing Building, Lexington, KY 40526. Please notate, Lynn Garman Au Scholarship).