BANGOR – BANGOR – Patricia Day Rowland, 80, died peacefully at a Bangor hospital Sunday, Nov. 25, 2012, of lung disease. She was surrounded by family and friends with her beloved cat, Jack on her lap. A third grade teacher for more than three decades at Downeast School in Bangor, Pat saw the good in every child and remained resilient and positive as health issues narrowed her outside activities. She will be remembered as a devoted sister, friend and aunt who brightened days with phone calls, cheery notes and hand-crocheted afghans to mark special occasions.
Pat was born Patricia Ann Day, Dec. 14, 1931, the youngest child of Norris E. and Florence (Maddocks) Day. A civic-minded teenager, she received the Curved Bar, then the highest award in Girl Scouting, in 1946 and again in 1947. She also was named a member of the Girls Athletic Honor Society, which recognized outstanding achievement in sports and academics. Pat was fun-loving and relished sharing happy school memories such as being the top baton twirler in sixth grade at Mary Snow School! Pat graduated from Bangor High School in 1949 and attended Wheelock College in Boston, which specialized in early childhood education. She earned a B.S. in Education from Wheelock in 1953. Pat married and lived in Salem, N.Y., where she taught fourth grade for eight years. Pat later divorced but stayed in close touch with her sister-in-law, Barbara Rowland. In 1961, Pat returned to Bangor and began teaching third-grade at Downeast School. She taught there until retiring in 1996. Pat was a warm and gifted teacher and an eager student always willing to explore new ways to make learning easier for children who struggle. In this pursuit, Pat earned both a Master of Arts in Teaching and a Certificate of Advanced Study in Literacy Education from the University of Maine, Orono. Throughout the years, Pat kept busy as a Girl Scout leader and swim official. In the 1960s and 70s, she was an active member of Essex Street Baptist Church, teaching Sunday school and Vacation Bible School, and serving as a counselor at China Lake Camp. She also sang in the choir. Pat was an enthusiastic singer, though her ever-ready offers to sing for family usually were met with laughing refusals! A lifelong Boston Red Sox fan, she wore her two World Series Championship sweatshirts with pride but was disappointed she would not live long enough to wear a third.
Pat was predeceased by her parents; her brother, Robert J. Day and his wife, Faith; her brother-in-law, Alejandro Solorzano; and several much loved cats and dogs. She is survived by her sister, ‘Betty’ N. Elizabeth Solorzano of Bangor; sister-in-law, Barbara Rowland of Cambridge, N.Y.; a nephew, Bob Day and wife, Margie, of Exeter; and six nieces, Valerie Paquette of Gorham, Prudence Bradford and husband, Ronald, of San Angelo, Texas, Diane Cupps and husband, Dennis, of Ochlocknee, Ga., Patience Coffman and husband, Bill, of Winterport, Lucia Solorzano and husband, Clem Work, of Missoula, Mont., and Carmen Solorzano of Boston. She also is survived by her beloved orange cat, Jack, Pat’s faithful companion for the past 10 years. Aunt Pat is mourned by numerous great-nieces and nephews and several great-great-nieces and nephews. Pat never parted without telling family members and friends that she loved them, which makes the loss all the dearer. Family members wish to thank the staff at St. Joseph Hospital who treated Pat with compassion during her final weeks of life.
A memorial service to celebrate Pat’s life will be held in spring 2013. A private graveside service will be held at Pine Grove Cemetery, where Pat will be laid to rest beside her parents. Friends who wish may make donations in Pat’s name to the Bangor Humane Society, 693 Mount Hope Ave., Bangor, ME 04401. Condolences to the family may be expressed at www.BrookingsSmith.com. A service of Brookings-Smith.