11/11/1941 - 10/10/2023
Obituary For PATRICIA BELANGER
It’s with great sadness to announce the passing of Patricia Drake Belanger on October 10th, 2023.
Patricia was born Helen Patricia Drake to Theodore Roosevelt Drake & Ruth Baird (Brown) Drake on November 11th, 1941 in West Palm Beach, Florida. She was the youngest of 8 children and the last to be born to the couple. In her youth she was known as Patti and never used her first given name of Helen at any time in her life and eventually legally dropped it to adopt Patricia as her first name. Her friends and family referred to her as Pat.
The majority of her youth was spent in Miami, Florida. She attended Miami Edison High School. During a summer break, she met her first husband Clyde C. Foster (1937-2017) in which she had 3 children with. Kimberly Sue (Foster) Stratton born 1960, Bryan Lee Foster deceased shortly after his birth in 1962 and Christopher Don Foster 1964.
As a single woman in the mid-70s, Pat developed a passion for helping people. She got her nurse's aide certification from Brevard College in Brevard, North Carolina. She continued her education by getting her LPN certification from Cape Fear Technical Institute in Wilmington, NC. Afterward, she worked in New Hanover Hospital, Wilmington, NC where she was a floor nurse but also spent time working in the ER. Through her time at New Hanover, she developed an interest in Obstetrics and Gynecology and transitioned to work with an OB/GYN practice. Through that experience she taught birthing classes to expectant families.
Pat selflessly took care of her mother Ruth leading up to her death in 1992 and decided to turn her nursing skills toward geriatrics. For the remainder of her career as a nurse, she worked with seniors and various facilities around SW Florida at one time becoming a Director of Nursing. She also served as a private duty nurse for several clients.
Among her coworkers and young nurses that she mentored, she was revered and respected for her vast knowledge and advocacy for the patients that she cared for. She worked hard to eliminate unnecessary medications and questioned those in authority above her when she felt something was not consistent with good judgement. She knew her patients and went to bat for them. She was an exceptional nurse and was loved by many!
As a mother and a grandmother, she was so proud of her children and her grandchildren. Several of which have dedicated their lives to senior care.
She is survived by: Her children Kimberly (Foster) Stratton of Lake City, Florida and Chris Foster who currently works for Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines. Her siblings Jean Drake Malchow of Hendersonville, NC and Edward Drake of Richmond, Va., 5 grandchildren -Tricia Delrio, Amy Saayman, Samantha Quale of Florida, Alexandra Garland-Foster and Zachary Garland-Foster of Kansas City, Missouri, 5 great grandchildren Kayleigh Albritton, Olivia and Grace Quale, Jenna Delrio, Drake Derby.
Please join us for a Celebration of Life in honor of our loving mom, grandma, and friend. We will honor her on Saturday, November 11, 2023 with a family visitation at 10:15 and Memorial Service at 11:00 am at the Chapel of Haven Hospice, Lake City, Florida.
The family would like to thank Solaris Health Care Center and Haven Hospice for their loving care in the final days of Patricia’s life. Please send donations to these facilities in lieu of gifts or flowers.
Arrangements trusted to ICS CREMATION & FUNERAL HOME 357 NW Wilks Lane, Lake City, Florida 32055. www.icsfuneralservices.com-386-752-3436
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