Patricia Sanford McKee Beckington, 96, died peacefully on Friday, November 13 at her home of many years, Goodwin House, Alexandria, Virginia. Before moving to Goodwin House, the Beckington's were longtime residents of S. Royal St. in old town Alexandria.
Pat was born July 17, 1924, in Washington DC, to Ernest Wheeler McKee and Adeline Vetter McKee.
Pat lived a full and fascinating life which included living in China when she was 6 years old, travelling the world with her Navy father and then her Marine husband. She was a proud graduate of Stanford University majoring in English – a passion she never lost. Pat had a number of passions and her brilliant mind and love of learning, combined with her generous, warm heart and ever-optimistic, joyful outlook stayed with her to her dying day, enriching the lives of all who had the great good fortune to know her.
She worked on the staff at Decatur House in Washington, D.C and was a long-time patient care volunteer at Hospice of Northern Virginia, now Capital Caring. And she was a longtime advocate for animals of all sizes and shapes. In her spare time, she enjoyed gardening and was an avid reader.
She was a decades long mainstay of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Alexandria and a pillar of the community. At St. Paul’s she served on the Vestry, was a member of the choir, Altar Guild, and served as Chalice bearer, Lector and Lay Reader. She was a Lay Eucharistic Visitor and a leader of the OWLS (Older Wiser Laity Group). She was a member and sometimes leader of many seminarian Lay Committees and served on sermon feedback panels at the Virginia Seminary.
She carried her strong faith with her to Goodwin House where she assisted the Chaplain on a regular basis.
She was the widow of LTG Herbert Lyford Beckington, USMC (retired) She was also predeceased by her parents, son Garth and his wife Hillary and her sister, Doris Bishop.
She is survived by her son, Jeffrey (Martha Lee), her grandchildren, Andrew, Patricia and Jessie Jane and nieces Nancy and Carol Bishop.
There are so many layers to one’s story that a few brief paragraphs can never capture what or who we have been. For those of us who loved Pat, she was nothing short of amazing and we thank her with all our hearts. We also want to thank the staff at Goodwin House who provided such loving care to both Herb and Pat for so many years.
A memorial service and burial will take place at a later date.
Donations in Pat’s memory may be made to the Alexandria Animal Welfare League.