Patsy Jean Neighbors, 1936-2019

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A memorial service for Patsy Jean Neighbors was Feb. 2 at Beaty Funeral Home in Winnsboro with Rev. Mike Morrow and Rev. Midkiff officiating.

Mrs. Neighbors went to be with the Lord on Jan. 29, 2019, while at her home in Quitman.

She was born in New London, Texas, on May 22, 1936, the only child of Alta Lois and Jackson Arnellious “Jack” McQuaid. After graduating from Big Sandy High School in 1954, Pat McQuaid married the love of her life, Lon Neighbors, on May 31, 1957. She earned her bachelor’s degree at East Texas State College (now Texas A&M University at Commerce) in 1958. Mrs. Neighbors continued her education by earning a master’s degree, licensure to teach in many fields, and certification to become a school counselor.

Pat loved being Granny Patsy to her immediate family and her extended family of friends, all of whom she cherished. Teaching, counseling, and coaching were her passions. She shared this drive to improve the lives of children with countless other professionals whom she treasured, as well. Her initial focus, when she was hired in 1961, was to build an athletic program for girls at Quitman High School. Tennis was the only competitive sport available for QISD girls until Coach Neighbors started volleyball in the mid-1960s. Texas had its first state tournament in 1967, and Coach Neighbors took her Lady Bulldogs to Austin in 1971. She was the only girl’s coach at QISD from 1961 through the early 1970s. Her coaching duties included volleyball, track, cheerleading, and pep squad for seventh through 12th grades. She has been a prominent influence on thousands of young lives in her professional career.

God and community were central to her life in her vocation and personal activities. She was a member of Faith Baptist Church, Pilot Club and Anchors, Autumn Trails Model A Club, East Texas Lazy 8s, Retired Teachers Association, Red Hatters, and Grand Lodge Auxiliary.

One of Mrs. Neighbors’s favorite pastimes was playing Mahjong with her friends.
Pat was preceded in death by her parents and her grandson, Richard King. She is survived by her husband of 61 years and several generations of family. Those relatives include her children: daughter Elaine of Quitman; son Richard of Quitman; and daughter Kelly of White Oak; and eight grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial gifts be made to Faith Baptist Church (Building Fund), P.O. Box 1495, Quitman, Texas, 75783 or Hospice of East Texas, 4111 University Boulevard, Tyler, Texas, 75701 www.hospiceofeasttexas.org

For more, see: Quitman educator, girls’ athletics trailblazer Pat Neighbors dies at 82.