Patti Nell Fortmeyer
Patti was born in Seattle, Wash., Nov. 22, 1930 to John M. and Nellie White. The youngest of five children, with all others considerably older, she received much love and attention as the "baby" of the family. As a child she played piano and also was dance partner of young Robert Joffrey, who later established the world-renowned Joffrey Ballet in New York. Growing up in Seattle's University District, Patti attended Lincoln High School.
She spent three decades as a waitress and server for many Seattle restaurants. In 1954 she married Walter F. Fortmeyer, Jr. and they eventually moved to the city's Maple Leaf area between Lake City and Northgate. A devout Christian, she was led to faith through the ministry of the Lakeview Free Methodist Church next to her home. She and Walt later spent many years as active members of Berean Bible Church in Shoreline, Wash. He died in 1994.
A devoted, loving mother of boy-girl twins who were born in 1955, Patti became well known in her neighborhood for the fun children's parties she held, including as a Cub Scout den mother. As the years passed, she was much loved as a "cute, funny and sassy" grandmother to four, and great-grandmother to eight. She loved sweets and always kept her teddy bear cookie jar fully stocked. She greatly enjoyed cooking for the holidays, and loved fall colors best, which coincided with her fall birthday.She volunteered much of her time to helping the elderly community. She often helped her older friends perform their errands and at a University District senior center she played piano in a "kitchen band" that made music with everyday cooking items.
After 84 years living in her birthplace city, health challenges prompted Patti to move in 2015 to Newberg to live with family. Although it was a huge change for a "big city girl," Patti grew to love smaller city life in Oregon and got involved with the local senior center and attended Newberg Church of the Nazarene.Patti was predeceased by her parents; by her husband Walt; by brothers John M. White and Richard White; by sisters Lenore McBirney and Blanche Frank; by a stillborn baby son, Steven Scott Fortmeyer; and by her daughter, Lynell Matsen. She is survived by her son and daughter-in-law, (Walter) John and Sandra Fortmeyer of Newberg, Ore.; by grandchildren Ryan Fortmeyer of Newberg; David Fortmeyer of Waldport, Ore.; Laura Olson of Carlton, Ore.; and Megan Fortmeyer of Newberg; and by eight great-grandchildren.
Celebration of Life service will be 11 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 7 at Newberg Church of the Nazarene. A January reception in her memory is also planned at Berean Bible Church in Shoreline, Wash.Arrangements are through Attrell's Funeral Chapel of Newberg. Inurnment is at Evergreen-Washelli Funeral Home in Seattle.