Obit: Sass, Patricia Diane (1942 - 2014)

Contact: Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon

Surnames: Sass, Zokoych, Carney, Pietrzen, Michels, Baumach, Lightfoot, Perkins, Resong, Joseph

----Source: Clark County Press (Neillsville, Clark Co, WI) 11/19/2014

Sass, Patricia Diane (21 July 1942 - 10 November 2014)

Patricia Sass, 72, of Neillsville, formerly of Chicago, IL, died Monday, Nov. 10, 2014, at the Memorial Medical Center in Neillsville.

Patricia Diane Sass was born July 21, 1942, in Chicago, IL, the daughter of Edward and Mary (Zokoych) Sass. She graduated from Lakeview High School in Chicago in 1960. In 1961, Pat began her career at the Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago by landing a non-paying job at the Children’s Zoo. In 1962, she talked with the then zoo director, R. Marlin Perkins, and was named to the post of zoo leader, meaning she was now a paid member of the Lincoln Park Zoo family. Over the years, Pat moved up the zoo hierarchy, becoming an animal keeper and senior keeper. She retired in 1998, after 37 years, and moved with her mother to Neillsville to be closer to her loving and supportive family.

Pat was a member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Neillsville and a former member of St. Bonaventure Catholic Church in Chicago. She had a deep and passionate love of all animals, but especially loved the great apes. She also loved Disney, especially the Seven Dwarfs’ character ‘Grumpy,’ and she was a big fan of the Chicago Cubs and Chicago Bears. Pat was a sweet, kind, generous person who would do anything for anyone at a moment’s notice. She will be sadly missed by her family and friends.

She is survived by a sister, Phyllis Carney of Neillsville; two nieces, Linda (Wally) Pietrzen of Eau Claire, and Patricia (Mark Michels) of Colfax; a nephew Janes (Kris Baumach) of Hatfield; a great nephew, Cole Lightfoot of Bloomer; and a great niece, Allyssa Carney of Hatfield.

She was preceded in death by her parents and a great niece, Amanda Carney.

The Memorial Mass of Christian Burial for Pat was held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 15, 2014 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Neillsville, with visitation from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. The celebrant was Rev. Varkey V. Joseph. Music was provided by Ronald Resong, organist, and St. Mary’s Choir. Interment was in St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery.

Online condolences may be made at  The Gesche Funeral Home assisted Pat’s family with funeral arrangements.



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