Patricia Nolander, 89, Albert Lea

Published 5:49 am Sunday, March 24, 2013

Memorial services for Patricia (Pat) Nolander, 89, will be at 11 a.m. April 6 at First Presbyterian Church in Albert Lea. Friends may gather to share memories with the family one hour prior to the service at the church. Online condolences are welcome at

Patricia Nolander

Patricia Nolander

Pat entered heaven and met Jesus, her savior, face to face on Saturday, March 16, 2013, at the Good Samaritan Society in Albert Lea surrounded by family members, friends and prayers.

Pat was born Nov. 21, 1923, in Minneapolis to parents Earl Charles Sharpe and Minnie Tisdale Fitterling Sharpe. Patricia was a graduate of Edina High School and attended the University of Minnesota. Pat was united in marriage to Donald Nolander Sr. on July 31, 1945, at her parent’s home in Edina. Pat was a member of the First Presbyterian Church of Albert Lea and Faith Presbyterian Church in Estero, Fla.

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Pat moved to Albert Lea from Minneapolis in 1954 when, along with Don’s brother John, they purchased Springer Oil Company in Conger. Patricia was a wife and mother first, then filled her spare time as a school, church and community volunteer. She was an active PTA member, volunteered as a booster club member/team mom for most of her children’s activities and sports, an active political volunteer and served on several capital fund drives including the Albert Lea Family Y’s current building location and Lea College. Pat was a member of the Eastern Star and very active in the ladies golf activities at the Albert Lea Country Club, plus many other local groups and organizations. She felt strongly that “everyone who could” should give back to the community through volunteering. No matter what sport or activity her children were involved in, Pat was always there.

By far, Pat’s favorite times were summer camping excursions with family and friends to northern Minnesota and Canada. Next to golfing, she loved to fish. Being in a boat with Pat when she was catching and landing a fish was a great experience. Hard hats were recommended! On one of these trips the family discovered Leech Lake near Walker and it quickly became the annual place to go. After Don’s retirement they spent summers at Leech Lake and winters in Estero playing many golf courses as they traveled back and forth. Eventually Don and Pat’s Florida home became their permanent home. After Don’s death in 1999, Pat’s friends at the Riverwood’s RV & Condominium Community in Estero became her second family. In 2010, due to ongoing medical challenges, Pat returned to Albert Lea and was a resident of Bancroft Bay senior living, Hidden Creek assisted living, and the Good Samaritan Society respectfully. The Nolander family wants to extend a heartfelt thank you to the staff at all of these facilities for their care and kindness shown to Pat since returning to Albert Lea in 2010.

Survivors include children, Don (JoAnn) of Albert Lea, Debra (Mike) Veldman of Hollandale, David (Teresa) of Albert Lea and Scott (Jill) Larson of St. Paul; grandchildren, Ryan (Jen) Nolander of Albert Lea, Steven (Steph) Nolander of Lakeville, Ginny (Bryan) Veldman (Seibert) of Ames, Iowa, Jake (Sarah) Veldman of Hollandale, Brock (Elizabeth) Veldman of Owatonna, Rachel (Kevin) Nolander (Poppel) of Albert Lea, Jordan Nolander and fiancée Michelle of Albert Lea, Evan Nolander of Boulder, Colo., and Michael and David Larson of Grand Forks, N.D.; great-grandchildren, Addison, Carson, Elaina and Ethan Nolander, Charlotte Poppel, Austin, Morgan and Noah Seibert and Connor, Annika, Hannah, Greta and Julia Veldman; sisters-in-law Tibby and Kitty Sharpe; nephews, John Jr. and Jason Nolander, Tad and Kirk Foley, Kimberly Swenson, Bill Jr., Earl and Daniel Sharpe; and nieces Diane Erickson, Patty Olbright, Georgiana Buckler and Amy Sharpe and their families.

Pat was preceded in death by her parents, Earl and Minnie Sharpe; husband, Don; brothers, Earl Jr. and Bill Sr. Sharpe; grandparents; several aunts and uncles; and many other dear friends and relatives.

If desired, memorials may be directed to First Presbyterian Church in Albert Lea and Crossroads Community Hospice of Albert Lea.