The Granny Peace Brigade has been going strong for so long-since October 2006 – that despite our collective advancing age, we have not thought about losing one of our members. Many grannies would agree that age is just a number, and our ages span approximately 30 years, from the late 60s to the late 90s. So it was with shock and sadness that we record the sudden loss of our granny Pat DeAngelis, from a stroke in December 2012.
Pat was an esteemed part of the group, offering valuable insight and suggestions regarding the various functions of the GPB, always with a calm but knowledgeable presentation.
Tall, slim with a ready smile, Pat participated as often as possible, given that she was still working full time at the Cooper Union.
Pat DeAngelis grew up in the Bronx, attended Hunter High School and the College of New Rochelle. Her conversion to Catholicism led to her decision to join a cloistered order in which, over ten years, she took vows of silence and performed manual labor. She then joined another order dedicated to helping the poor in various countries. Returning to the US, Pat moved to the Lower East Side, where she became an integral part of her building and the larger community, working with Dorothy Day and the Catholic Worker. In 1983 she worked at The New School, followed by almost 15 years in the School of Architecture at The Cooper Union.
During this time, Pat joined Women in Black and the Granny Peace Brigade, continuing her life of service and commitment while holding full time employment. She was active in support of Occupy Wall Street and her years in an academic setting gave her an appreciation of and relationship with many students.
On December 17, 2012, Pat suffered a stroke, remaining in a coma for six days in Hospice. She died on December 23. Many of her friends were with her in her last days to say farewell.
On February 9, 2013, a memorial for Pat was held at the school. The full house included people from the numerous diverse areas of Pat’s religious, activist and personal life. Many shared poignant and funny reminisces about Pat, and a stunning montage of photos scored with some of her favorite music gave many of us a glimpse into Pat’s rich and fulfilling life. from childhood through adulthood. Organizer and Friend Olivia Hicks also distributed tulips representing a prize-winning and poignant story Pat wrote at age 18 for Seventeen Magazine.
We deeply feel the loss of our extraordinary friend and comrade Pat DeAngelis.
– Ann Shirazi
for the Granny Peace Brigade
Photo (top) – Bud Korotzer
Photos (center, bottom) – Eva-Lee Baird