Patricia Anne Burkard
To her three daughters, Linda, Theresa, and Anita, she was mom. To her grandchildren and her great-grandchildren, she was Grandma Pat. And to her siblings, including her sister Marty, she was Patsy Anne. Surrounded by her family, friends, memories, and stories in her last days, Pat finally went home on January 31, 2023.
A true California native, Pat was born in Los Angeles, CA at Queen of Angels Hospital. She graduated from Catholic High in Santa Barbara in 1950. Pat was the oldest of Ben and Annabel Burkard’s six children.
Pat loved the nursing profession to which she dedicated her life. She completed the first of many degrees in nursing at St. Joseph School of Nursing in San Francisco, CA, going on to work as a nurse for Dr. Fink in Barstow, CA from 1956 to 1970. In 1971 she completed her RN at Riverside City College in Riverside, California. Pat then moved to Fresno where she earned her BSN and her MSN at CSU Fresno. She worked primarily in obstetrics, pediatrics, and pediatric intensive care.
In the early 1980s, Pat returned home to Santa Barbara to work at Cottage Hospital as a Maternal/Child Nurse Educator. In 1987 she joined a team that established the Birth Center at Saint Francis Hospital. Those years at Saint Francis were ones she truly treasured. It was not an unusual occurrence, if you were out with Pat, for someone to come up and thank her for being the calm and assuring delivery nurse for one or more of their children.
For at least two decades worth of summers, Pat could be found at Kennolyn Camp in the Santa Cruz mountains. She was the Camp Nurse and in exchange for her time at Kennolyn, Pat’s grandchildren were able to attend the camp free of charge. Those joyful summers led to life-long hobbies and interests, and many treasured memories, for Kelle, Troy, Kolin, and Kaitie.
Pat left her beloved clinical work to begin teaching nursing at Moorpark College’s ADN program, a change she embraced wholeheartedly and a path at which she excelled. After her retirement from Moorpark, she was a devoted clinical instructor at Cottage Hospital for the Santa Barbara City College ADN program until 2018. Her years of teaching made a difference in the lives of many young women and men, evidenced by the former students who would recognize her when out or about and thank Pat for helping them build their careers.
Pat was a very active volunteer for the Red Cross with her dear friend and fellow nurse, Marion. They were sent to disasters around the nation, providing medical attention and care after hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, and fires. She and Marion also volunteered for the Medical Reserve Corps. They worked the medical tents for local events from Deltopia to Fiesta.
To say that Pat loved traveling does not capture her vast adventures around the world. Along with her very loyal travel buddy, Karolyn, she was a member of Friendship Force, an international organization that promotes goodwill and cultural understanding between people throughout the world. In addition, she participated in several voyages offered through Semester at Sea. We estimate that Pat visited more than 35 countries on six continents.
Anyone that met Pat would soon know that she was perhaps one of the most loyal, devoted LA Dodger fans in California. In August of last year, family and good friends took her to a Dodger game, the only gift she wanted. A highlight was a surprise Jumbo Tron message wishing her a very happy 90th birthday.
Pat loved her family and her friends. She will undoubtedly be missed by so many. We are at peace that she is home and we find a small bit of consolation that she now has the best seat for all those Dodger games.
A gathering to celebrate Pat’s life will be held on Sunday, May 7th at the Santa Barbara Rose Garden. Please bring a chair or a blanket and join us from 3 o’clock to 5 o’clock. Perhaps you can wear your Dodger blue!