Patricia died peacefully at her home in Huntsville Texas, surrounded by her family, on Friday December 24, 2016 after a courageous battle with pancreatic cancer. Pat was 77.
Patricia Shrader-Griffiths was born July 13, 1939 as Patricia Helen Dvorak in Iowa City, Iowa to Leo and Genevra Dvorak. Throughout her life she lived in Oregon, Washington, Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska and Texas raising two sons, William Dvorak Shrader and John David Shrader, along with an expanded loving family.
Pat had an enduring love for family and friends and a glowing kindness and generosity to help others. Her warmth has provided the seeds of growth for so many, from her beautiful grandchildren, to the Sam Houston State Music Program, her P.E.O. group which she so loved, and her ongoing support of the Leo J. Dvorak Memorial Scholarship, which honors her father. She loved to help others to achieve and enjoy new opportunities.
As a gifted violinist and pianist, she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Music from the University of Iowa, where she served as concertmaster and studied piano and music education. Early in her career as a music teacher, she pioneered educational television in Oregon, writing and teaching the state's first music education television series.
Throughout her life she generously supported numerous women in their education. Pat invited a young Korean pianist (Wonmi Kim, Bologna, Italy) to stay with her family so that she could study with an internationally renowned pianist. Later, she invited a young woman from Poland (Dr. Agnieszka Lech, MD, Pacific Grove, CA) to study in Nebraska, funding her undergraduate education and securing host families to continue her support through medical school. Most recently, Pat hosted (Anna Smigelskaya, Houston TX) to study piano at Sam Houston State University. Pat has provided educational support to many others, both privately and through her participation as a lifelong member of P.E.O.
Pat loved travelling abroad, gardening and music.
Pat is survived by her devoted husband Edward Griffiths, son William and his wife Hali, son John and his wife Nancy, step-daughter Courtney Davis and her husband Jason, step-daughter Charlsie Griffiths, grandchildren Hannah and Leo Shrader (John) and Jack and Charles Davis (Courtney), younger sister Marilyn Blatter and her husband Alfred, and dear family and friends far and wide.
In lieu of flowers, the family respectfully requests that memorial gifts be made to the Eastern Illinois University Foundation in support of the Leo J. Dvorak Memorial Scholarship. Gifts may be sent to the EIU Foundation, 600 Lincoln Avenue, Charleston, IL 61920. A private memorial service is planned for her family at a later date.
Published on December 28, 2016