Mary Patricia “Pat” Kyser – Obituary

By  | May 8, 2017 | Filed under: Laughlin Service Funeral Home, Obituaries

  Mary Patricia “Pat” Kyser died peacefully in her home on May 7th, 2017. She was the widow of the late James Burley “Jim” Kyser who died in 1986. She lived in Huntsville for the past 42 years.

Her greatest joy was in her children, Cindy Kyser (Dave Buck) of Austin, AR; Jeff Kyser (Frances) of Lacey’s Spring, AL; and Diana Kyser of Summit, NJ. Her happiest role was as a grandmother to Jamelyn Kyser, Laura Romer (David), Gwen Gammon (Garrett), Mercedes Morgan, Jay, Grey, and Collin Knauer, Luke Marion, and Carrys Sasser (Scott), and Michael and Jeffrey Buck. Her great-grandchildren include Marion and Ree Sasser, Garrison and Genevieve Gammon, and Andrea Buck.

She was known widely as a teacher and designer of unique quilts and was privileged to travel nationally and to Europe and Australia teaching quilt making. Her quilts won many awards, and a one-woman show of her work was held at the Huntsville Museum of Art in 1994, the month of her sixtieth birthday. Twelve years later The Museum of the Gulf Coast in her hometown of Port Arthur, Texas, held a major exhibit of her quilts. She was invited to design a quilt that became the poster for Panoply of the Arts in 2007.

She founded the Alabama Chapter of the Embroiderers’ Guild of America (EGA) in 1977 and served as its president the first four years and again 2011-2013. She helped found the Tennessee Valley Region EGA, served as its first director and was named its Educator of Excellence in 1999 and received its Gold Thread Award in 2010. She wrote and taught a correspondence course in quilt making for the national EGA. With two friends she wrote and acted in a video “To Teach is to Learn Twice” that was released by the national EGA to regions all over the nation.

She was a charter member of the Tennessee Valley Quilt Association as well as of the Heritage Quilters of Huntsville. She served as president of the latter in 2000-2001.

In 1977 she was asked to designed and over subsequent years produced historic needlework kits for the Hermitage, President Andrew Jackson’s home in Nashville. Believing in historic preservation, she was a long time member of the Tennessee Valley Civil War Round Table.

She loved genealogy research and was a member and past president of the Huntsville Computer Genealogy Society. She was a member of Daughters of the Republic of Texas, Daughters of the American Revolution, American Daughters of the War of 1812, and Daughters of the Confederacy. She and her brother wrote and published a series of books on their parents’ family histories.

She was an ordained Deacon and Elder in the Presbyterian Church. She created a church banner, a Chrismon tree skirt and a set of liturgical paraments for First Presbyterian Church in Huntsville, as well as several large banners for the Christian Life Conference in Montreal, NC. Pieces of her liturgical work are in St. Peter’s by the Sea Presbyterian Church in Rancho Palos Verdes, CA; and in La Mesa Presbyterian in Albuquerque, NM. She established the Kyser Memorial Lectures in her late husband’s memory. In recent years, she attended St. Thomas Episcopal Church.

She loved to cook, sew, entertain and read, and thoroughly valued her friends.

Born in Port Arthur, Texas, she was grateful to be a sixth generation Texan. She received a degree in journalism from The University of Texas and wrote a column, “Pieces and Patches,” for Quilt World Magazine for twenty years.

She is survived by the children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren mentioned above, as well as brother Henry Flynn Jr. of League City, Texas. She was preceded in death by her husband, her parents Henry and Lettie Tracy Flynn, a daughter Laura Kathleen Kyser, and her sister Carol Flynn Harrell.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that a donation to the charity of your choice be made in memory of Pat.

A memorial service is being held at St. Thomas Episcopal Church, 12200 Bailey Cove Road on Wednesday, May 10th at 2:00 pm, with a brief visitation to follow.

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