Patricia Ann “Pat” Hannon

Patricia Ann “Pat” Hannon died on Wednesday, 25 September 2013 at the BridgeHaven Care Cottage in Lawrence. The staff there and the Visiting Nurses Association Hospice looked after her with loving care, for which we feel very blessed. Pat was born 14 October 1930 in Glendale, California, the daughter of William Apsley Smale and Nelle Phyllis Leggitt Smale. Her mother died following the birth of Pat and her twin brother Bill. Her father was in the US Consular Service. As a result her first eight years were spent in Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico. These were followed by eight years in Cork, Ireland, by one year in the United States, and two years in Belfast, Northern Ireland, where she first met her future husband Norman Leslie (Les) Hannon.

After meeting Les at parties and dances and a few dates, some on his motorcycle, she moved with her family to CapeTown, South Africa, where her father had been transferred as the US Consul-General. So began two years of letter writing every two weeks. Les had mentioned that he was thinking of emigrating to South Africa; Pat wrote that her dad was thinking of retiring to Ireland; Pat said that it would be like two ships passing in the night; so Les proposed to her in a letter; Pat cabled back “Yes”, and they finally met again. On 2 June 1951 they were married in Claremont, CapeTown.

Mrs. Hannon was home schooled in Mexico before attending fairly formal (uniforms) school for eight years in Cork, Ireland. She then had the culture shock of one year in high school in Calexico, California. She attended the Technical College in Belfast and Michaelis University in CapeTown.

Mrs. Hannon and her husband moved extensively. The first move from Johannesburg S.Africa to England was mainly because if they had children they did not want to bring them up in the then current apartheid atmosphere. Her husband’s consulting work resulted in lengthy assignments for the family in Nigeria, Sydney Australia, Ireland and England.

In 1963 the family moved to the United States, where they lived in New Jersey, Maryland, Quebec Canada, Kansas City, and Ohio. In 1973 Mrs. Hannon moved with her family to Lawrence Kansas. Over the years she was a Den mother and Brownie leader, and a founding Board member of DCCCA. She was very active in AA since 1968, still attending five meetings a week and helping many others. She was recently awarded her 44 years in AA Medallion. She was also involved in a number of other volunteer activities; she particularly enjoyed for many years, with Les, taking Christmas Day dinners to shut-ins especially in Eudora.

In 1976, her son Mike was killed when a car ran into him on his motorcycle. Pat became very active regarding Organ Donation; she worked with the Kidney Foundation in Topeka; she spoke widely in North East Kansas at many schools, at KU and was interviewed on Radio, TV and for the Lawrence Journal World. She was the one who really held the family together during that very tough time.

Over the years she enjoyed collecting antiques of many kinds. She was very skilled in tapestry work and sewing which she loved doing both for decorating her home and for bringing new life to battle-scarred antique furniture. She was a career homemaker.

She is survived by her husband Les, son Philip (Sandra) in Shawnee, Kansas, daughter Sarah Hannon-Dahm in Bixby, Oklahoma and four grandchildren, Derek (Becca), Trevor, Clayton and Erin. Also by her sister Mary Pilgrim in CapeTown S.Africa, and her half-sisters Juanita Spearman in Dublin and Amy Ramsden in Cork Ireland. As mentioned above her son Michael preceded her in death in 1976. She was also preceded in death by her twin brother Bill Smale in Ireland in 2012. Her body was donated to medical science.

A Gathering of Remembrance and time of sharing will be held at Warren-McElwain Mortuary in Lawrence on Sunday, September 29, 2013 at 1:00 p.m.

The family suggests memorials in her name to a charity of donor’s choice and may be sent in care of Warren-McElwain Mortuary.

12 Condolences

  1. Marilyn Battey on September 26, 2013 at 7:21 am

    Sarah and family, I so sorry to hear the news. I’m praying for you and your Dad.

  2. Cindy McNicoll on September 26, 2013 at 9:07 am

    She was a great lady.She will be missed by all her friends and those who loved her. May she rest in peace.Prayers for her family and peace be with you all.

  3. Melissa Borsella on September 26, 2013 at 6:31 pm

    My deepest sympathies Sarah….
    Miss you all and love you dearly!

  4. Tracy and Lana Russell on September 27, 2013 at 9:29 am

    Les, Phillip, and Sarah,
    It is with great sorrow that we learned of Pat’s passing today. We have truly enjoyed the friendship we have developed with such a wonderful couple. Everytime we hunker down to take the Del Sol out for a drive, Pat is in our hearts. May there be peace in knowing Pat was cared for and loved in her final days and the memories she has made for you over the years be remembered forever.

    Tracy and Lana Russell

  5. Lisa Carter on September 27, 2013 at 2:46 pm

    Les, so sorry to hear of Pat’s passing. You were a wonderful husband and caregiver to her. I’m glad I got the chance to meet her a couple of years ago. You have both been very kind to First Step. Thoughts and prayers are with you.

  6. John Esau on September 27, 2013 at 3:28 pm

    What a wonderful couple and a true love story. Les, it was easy to see that you adored your wife. So sorry for your loss, but also envious of the many years you shared together. You and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers. John Esau

  7. Charles Easter on September 27, 2013 at 7:47 pm

    My thoughts and prayers are with Pats family. It was a great honor and pleasure to know such a kind lady.

  8. Krystal Butell on September 28, 2013 at 9:50 pm

    Les & family,

    Pat was a mentor and friend since 1999 when I met her. Her way of ‘keeping it simple’ and consistent reminders of the basics kept me and others going when life felt overwhelming. I treasure the memories of her laughter and her wisdom. She’s a great lady!

    My prayers and thoughts are with you all.
    Krystal Butell

  9. Sharon Johnson on September 29, 2013 at 11:34 am

    I want to offer my condolences to the family and friends at this time. Losing a loved one is one of the hardest things to overcome. The God of the Bible Jehovah does not want anyone to experience the pain, sorrow and mourning your family is going through. That is why one day he will do away with death, and families will be reunited. Rev 21:3-4. Prayers of support, comfort and endurance are being said for the entire family.

  10. phoebe smale marrall on October 14, 2013 at 11:31 am

    To Les, Philip and Sarah, I must send my condolences in the death of Pat, about which I just learned. Pat, whom I last saw perhaps in 1968, was my first cousin, and whom I knew only as a child many years ago in El Cajon , California. She was a lovely and thoughtful lady. Because cousins often know each other only when they are very young, early impressions are important. I thought she was beautiful then, and at our last meeting I certainly was aware of her good spirit. She had strength and kindness in her nature.

  11. Bill Mc Connell on October 30, 2013 at 10:27 pm

    Extraordinarily, I was checking any record of former classmates at Cork Grammar School over the period 1945-1948 and came across this notice of Patricia Hannon’s death. ‘ Patsy Smale’ , as she was to me, was in my class (Form V, as it then was ) at the Grammar School in that era and I recall that she was probably then the glamour girl of the class, a girl to be admired and full of life. Yes, she did indeed have to wear a school uniform, but she certainly made it look good. She was a friendly, kind and generous girl then and great to have as a classmate. At various times, I also had her twin brother, Bill ( I didn’t know he was her twin at that time ) and her sister Mary in my classes. Their father was indeed US Consul-General in Cork at that time. I moved from Cork in 1948 and lost track of Patsy, her brother and sister and subsequently moved to Canada, where I now live, in Toronto, Happy trails , Patsy, it was great to know you, albeit at such a young age, so many years ago, and may God guide you on your way.

    All best wishes,
    Bill Mc Connell

  12. Kerri Godinez on February 10, 2014 at 5:48 pm

    Hello…My name is Kerri and I am the oldest granddaughter of Pat’s twin Brother Bill (William). I am so sorry to hear of her passing. I have a few fond memories of her visits with my grandpa and grandma while they were in Long Beach and Torrance. What a sweet spirited lady. Prayers of comfort and peace to all of you during this difficult time.

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