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Patricia Gilstrap
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Patricia A. (Cooper) Gilstrap, 72, died Monday, July 19.She was born in El Centro to Albert and Viola Cooper and lived most of the next 10 years in Clarinda, IA, where she had many fond memories. She lived 60 years in Stanislaus County, 33 years on a ranchette where her sons and their family enjoyed many holidays. She attended Modesto High School.For the past six years, she and her husband lived in Oakdale, in Foothill Oaks senior living village, where her neighbors showed her much kindness during her time of illness.Mrs. Gilstrap was a registered nurse. For 13 years she worked for the old City Hospital in labor and delivery, then worked at Doctors Hospital for 12 years in the neonatology department as a neonatal intensive care nurse. She loved being a nurse for the preemies.She and her husband traveled to more than 20 countries and extensively in the U.S.A. Her most special memories were of camping in Yosemite Park and watching the fire falls with her family.She had a large extended family, the Savages, and was the oldest of 28 cousins who for many years all lived in the greater Modesto area. Her grandparents and her seven aunts held a special place in her heart. Her sons and their families gave her great joy. She home schooled three of her grandchildren. For 37 years, the family celebrated Thanksgiving and Christmas in her home. When she thought a family member needed her, she was there for them.As a young woman, she sang on KTRB radio as well as at weddings, funerals and for her church. She was a Sunday School teacher and for the past few years attended Calvary Chapel.She is survived by her husband of 54 years, Chuck; sons, Michael of Modesto, Philip of Oakdale, David of Modesto; siblings, Jean Cooper of Columbia, Larry Cooper of Turlock, Jim Cooper of Modesto, Steve Cooper of Riverbank, Vonnie Cooper, Johnny Cooper, both of Portland, OR; grandchildren, Jeremy, Joshua, Laura, Julie, Michelle, Jacquelyn, Caitlynd, and Charlie; and five great-grandchildren, Cassidy, Dakota, Jack, Jonathan and Wyatt.She was preceded in death by her parents, Albert Cooper and Viola (Savage) Cooper.A celebration of life will be at 1 p.m. on Saturday, July 24 at Calvary Chapel, 4300 America Ave., off Pelandale, in Modesto.Remembrances may be made in her memory to your church or favorite charity.The Oakdale (Calif.) LeaderJuly 21, 2010