In Memory

Nancy Patton (Cosden)

Nancy Patton (Cosden)

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11/06/13 11:11 AM #1    

Alan Fischer

Nancy and I  lived in the same apartment comlex, I was on the third floor and she was on the first floor.  Our parents would have us play together and unlike most girls, instead of dolls, she liked to play with model cars which was alright by  me.  I  was saddened to hear of her passing and shocked.  At the 40th reunion we really had a chance to talk about old times on Whashington St.  God bless you Nancy! 

11/07/13 08:06 AM #2    

Abigail (Gail) Rev. Dr. Estabrooke (Albert)

I remember Nancy from Central School.  I am so saddened she has passed.  We all played together at times, Nancy, Miriam Mariella, Alan Fisher, Paul Homquist, John Kough, Larry Fitzsimmons, Gale Stieler, Alison Hayford, Karen Fleisher, Dick Darling.  We had fun as kids.

12/08/13 09:41 PM #3    

Lory Rosenberg

Nancy and I were friends, and I remember us being part of a small group of girls made up of Carolyn Lehman and a few others, including Sue Nelson and Sue Johnson.  I was in contact with Nancy in the last 10 years and knew that she lived in California, but unfortunately didn't have the opportunity to spend any time with her. I was surprised and saddened to learn of her passing. 

03/02/14 02:43 PM #4    

Merry (Elizabeth) Bennett (Plocar)

Oh, this is incredibly sad.  I met Nancy at Central School when I joined her class. She lived a block away from me. We remained good friends through Nichols, and then kind of lost touch in highschool.  Some of my best memories of junior high are of ice skating with Nancy.  We'd walk over to the city-made skating rink near Dempster and Ridge (?) and talk about the boys we liked (my lips are still sealed, Nancy!) and our mothers.  I loved her mother; she did, too.  We reconnected somewhere around the 25th reunion.  She seemed so happy with her life and work and family.

08/31/14 06:44 PM #5    

Sherwin "Jay" Siegall

Sweet kind person! Nancy and I would talk and she would "counsel me" while I was briefly seeing/dating her good friend Susan Johnson probably as a freshman or sophmore.

Another loss that brings tears! Why some of us are so lucky to be alive and healthy while so many GOOD people have passed on so prematurely. You are missed and fondly rememberd by many Nancy!

09/06/14 12:30 AM #6    

Karl Morthole

    I really miss Nancy.  The last time I have thought about her as much as I have the last several months, as we head into this reunion, was at and after her memorial service in 2009, where her husband of 30 years, Bill, and her two sons, Jake and Chris, spoke so eloquently of their lives with her.  Judy Anderson, Bill Bunce and Ginger May also attended her memorial.(IfIhave forgotten any other classmates who were there, please forgive me).  It was a very moving experience for all of us.

    From fall 1961 until graduation, and for over a year after high school, Nancy was my single closest friend.  Thereafter, she remained a good friend, and eventually, we both came to be living in the SF Bay Area, Nancy and Bill in the East Bay, in Orinda and Gail and I in the City, in the Sunset District.  We became friends and had dinner or lunch together several times, including with her mom, Ellie, after she came west to be with Nancy and Bill.  Bill and I are still friends, after working on a couple cases together for our respective clients, PG&E (Bill) and Southern Pacific Railroad (me), on environmental cases. Prior to working for PG&E, Bill was a Senior Deputy District Attorney for Alameda County.

   After first meeting Nancy at the YMCA “Plant Room” on several Friday evenings in October/November, 1961, I asked her to go to a high school dance, and she said yes.  From then on we were effectively “going steady” for the rest of high school; I was pretty shy socially, and she was my first steady girl friend.  If I recall correctly, I think I was her first steady boy friend.  Both of us had dated others before, but we just hit it off, and we helped each other through a very challenging period in our lives -- our middle to late teenage years.

   From 1961, to the summer of 1965, she was a regular presence in my life.  We talked on the phone most evenings.  We went to dances together, movies, dates such as minature golf at Par King out west on Dempster, the class cruises on Lake Michigan and Lake Geneva, basically all the things high school kids did in those days.  We often double-dated with Steve Place and Carolyn Lehman, Sue Johnson and Paul Stutz, Wally Schnell and Lory Rosenberg and Rick Caldwell and Judy Swanson, and several other couples.  Nancy was in East Hall (’04), whereas I was in South Hall (‘44), so we did not have homeroom together, nor any classes as I can recall.  We went to football games together on Saturday afternoons, to soccer games on (usually) Saturday mornings, and to basketball games, home and away.  For basketball, I usually sat in what became the Boys cheer section, led by Wally Schnell, and she was in the Girls cheer section, so we did not sit together for the games, but I picked her up and took her home.  In the fall of ’64 and spring of ’65, we visited each other at our colleges – she went to DePauw in Indiana and I went to Princeton in New Jersey.

    She and I were steady, loyal and caring persons in each others’ lives, and I will always cherish her memory.

    Here is an obituary that I found online this afternoon:

Nancy W. (Patton) Cosden

 Nancy W. (Patton) Cosden January 17, 1946 - December 22, 2008 Orinda, CA. Nancy W. (Patton) Cosden brightened the world and touched many lives. Nancy was a beloved wife, mother, friend, and special education teacher for the visually impaired. Born and raised in Evanston, IL, she graduated from NYU with a BA in Spanish, and later received a fellowship for a Masters in Special Education at CSUSF. As a special ed teacher, she immersed herself in bettering the lives of her students and their families, by being as much a social worker as a teacher and commonly using her own time and resources to do so. Between teaching jobs with the Vallejo USD and the Mt. Diablo USD, Nancy took an extended "maternity leave" to experience the joy of her life, raising her two sons. While raising Jake and Chris, she generously contributed her time and talents to her community and public schools, including organizing and presenting parent education and child safety programs. Also, for many years, she hosted foreign exchange students. Nancy enjoyed experiencing other cultures both through these students and her own extensive travel. Cooking, gardening and reading were among her passions, and she loved hosting family and friends at her Orinda home, which she helped design and supervised the construction. Her spirit was indomitable, as she continued to teach, even though significantly impacted by the affects of advanced breast cancer. Her spirit and quiet courage became even more inspirational during the last eight months of her life, when lung disease caused her to be hospitalized, and kept alive by a ventilator. Despite these conditions, she made us smile and laugh every day. We will never be able to adequately express our appreciation for the wonderful and loving care she received from the health professionals of Summit Hospital (Merritt) in Oakland and her doctors Nancy was predeceased by her father, Newton Cassel Patton, in 1950 and by her beloved mother, Eloise (Ellie) W. Patton Stoops in 1997. Survivors include her husband of thirty years, Bill Cosden; sons Jake and Chris Cosden; mother-in-law Lois Dawers; cousins Sue Beard (Carl) and Dick (Ellie) Sinclair and their collective children: Catherine (Josh) Beard, Jeff Beard, Brian (Kristen) Sinclair and Amy Sinclair; and exchange students Marta Bartlowszewska and Ivan Aizpurua, who became a daughter and a third son to her. A celebration of Nancy's life will take place at 4:00 PM, this Thursday, January 8th, at the Veterans Building in Lafayette, CA, located at 3780 Mt. Diablo Blvd. Contributions may be made to the National Federation for the Blind.

Published in San Francisco Chronicle on Jan. 7, 2009

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