Patricia Killough Lamdin began her next adventure in the early morning hours of April 12. She was 91.
Born on Jan. 28, 1928 in Baltimore, she was the cherished daughter of Edward Mathias Killough and Florence Ridgley Killough.
Growing up through the Great Depression and World War II, she developed the virtues of generosity, honesty and patriotism at its most honorable that distinguished her character for the rest of her life, and added to them a keen sense of humor. In 1946 she graduated from The Bryn Mawr School with vital life skills that included logic, Latin, lacrosse, precision calisthenics, and Scandinavian folk dancing.
Shortly thereafter, she married the boy next door, Adrian Merryman. Before their divorce they had two children, Kathleen and Adrian Hastings Merryman, Jr.
When she and William Dungan Lamdin, Jr., met at a New Year’s Eve party in 1953, they realized how happy two people could be. They married August 20, 1955, and embarked on a merrily unpredictable life accented with passionate public service. They made a happily chaotic home in Baltimore for their four children: William Dungan Lamdin III, Meredith Clarke Lamdin, Elizabeth Ridgely Lamdin, and Eleanor Hardey Lamdin, with whom Adrian and Kathleen joined to make one “modern” family.
Pat included the whole family as she volunteered for causes including social justice, civil rights and peace in Vietnam. (In the late 60s she was proud that the FBI agents watching her addressed her by name - Mrs. Lamdin.)
Baltimore proved to be too small for the Lamdin family, and in the summer of 1971, they bought a ranch, sight unseen, on the Greybull River near Meeteetse, Wyoming. They loaded up kids, pets, and possessions into three old blue trucks and set out to redefine the pioneer experience. Two Cabin Ranch was a wreck when they found it, but with the help of champion neighbor Jim Slack, they turned it into the best kind of disaster.
After they got the hang of irrigating fields, milking cows and goats, and checking the outhouse for rattlers, they opened a summer camp for kids from the East Coast. Upon arrival that first year the kids were delighted to learn that if they wanted to sleep in a lean-to or geodesic dome, they had to build it first. For the three summers the fun lasted, the campers adored everything about Pat and Bill, Two Cabin, and Wyoming. During those years Pat and Bill earned the moniker bestowed by our dear cousin John Sears: the matriarch and patriarch of Wyoming’s most dangerous (and exciting) family.
In Meeteetse, Pat continued her activist and volunteering ways. She and Bill were leaders on environmental issues; she served on the Park County Library Board and as a local election official for many years. And, of course, there were the pets – abandoned dogs, cats and ponies – rescued by the love of the Lamdins.
After Mom survived a heart attack in her 60’s, she moved the family to Cody to be closer to its excellent medical care. Slowing down gave Pat and Bill the opportunity to tour Italy, Scotland, Spain, France and spend many summers on Flathead Lake.
As Pat aged, she spent much of her energy on her dear critters, dearest grand and great-grandchildren, and on Bill as he battled illness in his final years. That last included having a home built that would be safe and accessible for him.
In a grand finale, last summer Pat journeyed to Scotland with a jolly assortment of kids and grandkids, none of whom are allergic to bagpipes. She scattered Bill’s ashes in Loch Lomond.
Pat’s family is grateful beyond these few words to the caregivers, led by Meredith, who gave Mom the best quality of life anyone could hope for. They include Marie Williams, Debi Davenport, Kim Dawson, Laurie Quade and Becca Pina.
Bill and their spectacular granddaughter, Hilary Cartwright, left us before Pat.
Her survivors include her children and their spouses: Michael and Kathleen Archbold, Adrian Hastings and Kathy Merryman, Bill and Kim Lamdin, Meredith Cartwright, Elizabeth Lamdin, and Greg and Eleanor Halsey; her grandchildren and their partners include John Lamdin, Grace Lamdin, William Lamdin, Patricia and Randy Kindle, Clare Halsey, Halley Archbold and Vince McCarthy, Derek and Amy Archbold Green, and Alice, Emily and Sarah Merryman; great-grandchildren include Ellie and Ethan Kindle, and Eden, Devon and Elijah Green.
Pat’s far-flung family and friends will celebrate her life at 2 p.m. Saturday, August 24, at Ballard Funeral Home, in Cody.
Should you choose, donations in Pat’s name may be made to the Park County Animal Shelter, Box 203, Cody, Wyoming 82414.