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Patricia Irene Blough

October 15, 2019
Patricia Irene Blough
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Obituary for Patricia Irene Blough
Patricia McBride Blough died peacefully on October 15, 2019 at The Bethany Home of Rhode Island, of complications related to Alzheimer’s disease. Born in Bronxville New York in 1929, she grew up in nearby Scarsdale and earned a BA from Mt. Holyoke College and an MA in experimental psychology from Tufts University. In 1954, while at Tufts, she married Donald Blough, a graduate student at Harvard at that time. The couple moved to Rockville Maryland in 1954, where their sons Doug and Steve were born, and then to Providence in 1958 where their daughter Kathy was born.
Pat’s family life was punctuated by frequent visits to the family’s cabin on Candlewood Lake in Connecticut, and also by hiking, skiing and camping expeditions with her family, including visits to several of the western National Parks. After her children started school Pat was employed as a research professor in Brown University’s Psychology Department, eventually publishing 34 articles in professional journals, half of them as sole author. Pat was also active locally as one of the co-founders of the Brown Play School and as a Sunday school teacher at the First Unitarian Church. In later years she and Don were active birders, and Pat volunteered for a time at the local offices of the Audubon Society and the Nature Conservancy. Still later she served as organizer of adult walking and singing groups.
Both Pat and Don had performed in Gilbert & Sullivan operettas in college, and that experience, together with a general love of music, helped bring them together. Pat played the piano and, more publicly, the violin, serving for a time as a member of the Brown Orchestra and later with the R. I. College orchestra.
Pat is survived by her husband Donald, her sons Douglas of Walnut Creek CA and Stephen of North Bethesda MD, her daughter Kathryn of Northfield MN, and grandchildren Dylan, Noah, Meghan and Kelsey.
Contributions in her memory may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, 245 Waterman Street, #306, Providence, RI 02906. A gathering in her memory will be held at a later date
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