Patricia June Robinson
June 27, 1932-Sept. 18, 2020
Palo Alto, California
Submitted by Jeff Robinson
Pat Robinson, 88, passed away peacefully on September 18, 2020 in her home in Palo Alto, CA after a brief bout with cancer. She was surrounded by her loving family and friends.
A Tooele, Utah native and longtime Californian, Pat was born June 27, 1932 to John and Jenny Lacey. The youngest of four siblings, Pat came late to the Lacey Party. She graduated from Tooele High School, earned a Bachelor of Arts and Masters in Education at the Utah State University and became an early childhood educator. She also excelled in music; playing piano and singing. She was active in Student Government and president of her Kappa Delta Sorority.
After a short stint teaching elementary school in Portland, Oregon, Pat moved to Palo Alto Unified School District where she taught hundreds of kindergarteners and first graders during 36 years of service. She was a distinguished educator who helped enrich instruction of other teachers, winning several awards for her teaching excellence. She was also the subject of a documentary on language development.
In addition to her career as an early childhood educator, Pat worked in administrative positions for companies in San Francisco and Palo Alto including Rucker-Fuller Desk Company, Sullivan and Cromwell, and IBM (consulting on early computer reading education programs). She loved her lovely ladies luncheon group, her poetry group, the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers and good Jazz. After retirement, her “third act” was as a passionate volunteer with numerous organizations in the Palo Alto area including, Gamble Gardens, Avenidas Senior Center, Ronald McDonald House, Stanford Children’s Hospital Auxiliary.
Pat was an avid world traveler and life-long learner. She generally said ‘Yes’ to fun. Her epic trips with friends are documented in shelves and shelves of photo albums and videos. Patricias’ church community and her LDS faith allowed her to teach and share with curiosity and an open mind. These were her foundational values.
One day in the late 1950’s, Pats love of music found her in Charlies’ Record Store in Palo Alto. Charlie introduced her to Phil Robinson, who worked at the record store. They married and had two sons, Jeff and Scott, who were the joy of Pat’s life. Pat and her boys gained local renown for their Holiday tradition of soup for the Palo Alto community.
Pat is survived by her sons and their spouses: Jeff Robinson and Ellen A Lumpkin of Berkeley CA, and Scott and Liz Robinson of Mesa AZ; grandchildren and their spouses: Sarah Robinson, Anna and Hirotaka Inuzuka, John Robinson, Alexia Lumpkin, Corey and Adri Robinson, Katy Robinson, and Danny Robinson,; great-grandchildren: Henry, Beau and Janie Sue Robinson, Gunner and Zachary Robinson, and Juno and Wren Inuzuka; and numerous nieces and nephews and their families. She was preceded in death by parents Jenny and John Lacey, brothers Joe, George and Jack Lacey and former husband Phil Robinson.
The family wishes to extend special gratitude to the Pale family for their love and care, to Vanessa Carlisle-Johnson and to the Van Kuran Family who helped make her final year happy and comfortable.
Pat was an active contributor to many charitable causes and the family asks that in lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Utah State University Music Department, the Patricia Robinson Fund for Music at Chautauqua Institution, or in support of the many other causes she cared for.
A private graveside service will be held on Friday, September 25th. A celebration of Pat’s extraordinary life is planned, and will be announced when we can celebrate together after social distancing has ceased. Those who loved her are welcome to share their memories of Pat in a drive/walk-by tribute outside her home at 2389 Amherst st. Palo Alto, CA on Friday the 25th between 3 and 5pm. Masks and social distancing are required in compliance with Santa Clara County policy. Parking is limited, though a few blocks away parking in the lot at the LDS Institute: 865 Stanford Ave. is encouraged.