Obituary for Patricia Rogers (Thomas)
Patricia Thomas Rogers passed away peacefully on Wednesday January 10, 2018. Our beloved Pat was born in Arlington, Virginia to the late James Louis Thomas of Roxboro, North Carolina and his late wife Mary Rosalie Purchase of New York. A graduate of the Georgetown Visitation Preparatory School Class of 1957 she remained connected to memories of the school she shared with her late sister Barbara and her mother Mary. She was a debutante at the Holly Ball. She attended William and Mary and graduated from Seton Hall Class of 1961.
Professionally she was a trailblazer for women in Washington, DC as the first female commercial salesman for Sherwin Williams. She worked on important historic landmark restoration projects including The Willard Hotel, US Capitol Dome, Union Station, Wolf Trap National Park, as well as many large horse farms in Middleburg and Upperville, Virginia. During this time she also raised four young sons and it is difficult to imagine a time they did not have many friends to her home.
She is survived by her devoted husband and fishing partner William Oliver Rogers III of Heathesville, Virginia. She is survived by her sons - George Thomas Des Jardins of Mount Vernon, Virginia, Timothy Roy Des Jardins and John Marcus Des Jardins, both of Atlanta, Georgia. She was predeceased by her son James Des Jardins of Fairfax, Virginia. She is survived by her brother David Peter Thomas of Nellysford, Virginia.
An energetic and kind woman Pat’s home was open to children from the neighborhood and in later years friends of the boys from all over the globe. Many recall her fondly helping them to plant trees, garden, and fix boats through the years. She remained a mentor and a touchstone to many encouraging them in their own goals and aspirations. She was an engaged and loving grandmother and great grandmother.
With her husband Bill she embraced the outdoors. On a trip to the Alaskan Bush they were married in Cordova. Pat was an accomplished Fly fisherwoman for both trout and salmon. An avid marksman she took her favorite 44 magnum revolver with her to repel bears on their honeymoon. Together they visited Alaska five times in pursuit of salmon. At their home in Heathesville they enjoyed touring with a reproduction barge for John Smith’s 400th Anniversary with the Reedville Fishermen’s Museum and the Smithsonian.
Pat’s love of gardening was a constant passion passed down to her from her father. She was a past President of the Northern Neck Master Gardeners. Her talents at arranging, pruning, planting, growing will be missed by all those with whom she shared so much. She had a beautiful library of gardening books which she generously gave to friends and family.
She will be remembered by many extended family and friends including stepchildren, daughter-in-laws, fourteen grandchildren, and two great grandchildren. Her constant companion Dumbledore, a miniature poodle, misses her greatly, as do we all.
A memorial service was held in her honor last weekend among family and friends. In lieu of flowers or plants the family appreciates contributions in Pat’s memory be made to the Riverside Tappahannock Hospice at 289 Hospital Road, Tappahannock, Virginia 22560.