Patricia Ann Chaffey, the daughter of Claude Francis and Myrtle Grace (Miller) O’Neill, was born on February 26, 1925, in Omaha, Nebraska. She graduated from Harlan (Iowa) High School in 1943, and attended Ottumwa Heights College for Women in Ottumwa, Iowa. Patricia received her Associate of Arts degree from Ottumwa Heights in 1945. She continued her education at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, receiving her PhB degree in 1949. She was awarded a Master of Social Work degree from Loyola University, Chicago, Illinois, in 1957.
On April 27, 1960, Patricia married Warren Tremlett Chaffey at Beale Air Force Base in California. For 35 years, she worked as a social worker in Iowa, Illinois, Virginia, California, Guam, and Washington, DC. The couple returned to Harlan in June, 1973, where Patricia remained active in her profession.
Patricia was a member of St. Michael’s Catholic Church in Harlan, Iowa. She was active in several organizations, including the American Association of University Women (AAUW), Myrtue Memorial Hospital Auxiliary, Shelby County Democrats, and Air Force Sergeant Association Auxiliary. She had also served as president of the Shelby County Historical Society. Patricia enjoyed playing Bridge several times a week, camping, and traveling with the Shelby County Commander’s Club.
Patricia A. Chaffey died on Tuesday, July 3, 2007, at the Creighton University Medical Center in Omaha, Nebraska, having reached the age of 82 years, 4 months, and 7 days.
Patricia was preceded in death by her parents. She is survived by her husband of 47 years, Warren Chaffey of Harlan, Iowa; two step-daughters, Dale Avery and Valerie Fontaine, both of Los Angeles, California; one step-son, David (Laurie) Chaffey of Los Angeles, California; seven grandchildren; and other relatives and friends.
Memorial Mass was held on Saturday, July 7, 2007, at St. Michael’s Catholic Church in Harlan, Iowa, with Father Robert Hoefler celebrating. Musicians were Kate Kohorst and Maryalyce Dotzler. Memorials may be made to the Shelby County Historical Society. The Burmeister-Johannsen Funeral Home in Harlan was in charge of the arrangements.