TRAVERSE CITY — Priscilla Mae Carlson, “Pat,” “Grandma Pat,” 84, of Traverse City, died Feb. 19, 2014. She was born Nov. 19, 1929, in Bessemer, to Paul and Ethel Hoeft.
Pat married her high school sweetheart, Herman “Bud” Carlson just shy of her 17th birthday and soon after had three children, William, Debra and Jeffrey.
Pat was gifted at anything that required artistic talent, especially china painting.
She was a member of the Michigan China Painters Association, Michigan Federation of China Painters and International China Painting Teachers Organization.
She taught for 17 years, winning top awards for her works and lecturing in many states. When Pat wasn’t teaching or creating she served as bookkeeper for the family businesses, Bud’s North End Shell in Oak Park and later after moving, Traverse City Frame and Axle for a combined 36 years.
A love of music and dancing was shared between her and Bud, entertaining the grandkids with many impromptu basement ballroom dances to the Lawrence Welk Show.
In 1990 she lost her dance partner, Bud, after a long and wonderful marriage. Never with idle hands, Pat went on to work at Prange’s (Younkers) then to the original GFS in Traverse City, well known as the Demo Dame and later as an enthusiastic and keen-eyed greeter at Meijer.
Always armed with a smile, hug and a great sense of humor, Pat was known for her endless talents of knitting, crocheting, sewing, baking and sometimes — a sharp and sassy tongue. Those lucky enough to be in her circle were often recipients of her almond toffee, rye bread, peanut butter cookies and the warmth provided by the gift of her hand-knit afghans, many of which grace the couches of her loving friends and family.
Besides the homemade treats, her greatest gift was her enthusiasm for grandchildren and those who needed a “Gramma,” serving twice a week at Willow Hill Elementary as the “Special Gramma” to kindergarten and first graders for many years. Neighborhood children were all encouraged and excited to be able to call her “Gramma.” With her tireless energy for creating and giving, not a birthday went by without some acknowledgement from her, whether it be a famous spaghetti and meatball dinner complete with homemade confetti angel food cake or just a thoughtfully selected birthday card, Pat was on it.