Aspen, CO Colorado
Beloved former Aspen schoolteacher Patti Seifert passed away July 27, 2008, after an 11-year battle with cancer.
Patti was born and raised in Denver, and graduated from the University of Colorado with a teaching degree. She later received her master’s from Leslie College in Boston. Patti moved to Aspen in 1972 and spent 30 years as a kindergarten teacher at Aspen Elementary.
Patti’s professional life was a journey beyond her kindergarten classroom. She attended Columbia University Teacher’s College Writing Project in New York City in the ’80s. This created new professional horizons and fostered many lasting friendships. She worked with and learned from literacy professionals such as Lucy Calkins, Diane Snowball, Shelley Harwayne, Stephanie Harvey and more.
Her professional relationship with Sue Smith Slavin and Judy Davis became a lasting friendship. Patti began doing consulting work in Colorado and in the New York area. A few highlights include a presentation at an International Reading Conference in Australia, authoring educational children’s books and co-authoring a professional book on inquiry teaching and learning. Patti cared deeply about children and teaching, and has left a legacy of a love of learning. She was a valued colleague from West to East.
Patti loved being outdoors and was an avid skier. She loved every aspect of Bell Mountain, especially the Back of Bell, in the trees between One and Two. She called it the “back to the back to the back.” Another favorite run was first tracks on Christmas Tree (old-timers never call it anything else!). She had a passion for powder and the cowboy cookies at Bonnie’s.
Patti’s summertime love was hiking. Some of her favorite hikes were Grizzly Lake, Difficult, Midway and Hunter Creek. She always found a secluded rock, where she would spend hours reading a good book, and she was always accompanied by one of her devoted dogs.
Patti is survived by her beloved dog of 15 years, Nanook; her sister, Elaine (Ron) Soy, of Denver; and nieces Lysa ( Tim) Reed, of Aspen; Dana Hussey, of Arizona; and Tammie ( Tom) Burns, of Massachusetts. She is also survived by her grandnieces and nephews, whom she loved so much: Taylor and Brenon Reed, Cody and Savannah Hussey, and Corey, Hayley and Jamie Burns.
Patti touched the lives of so many people. She is leaving behind amazing friends, students and colleagues who loved her tremendously and have been such an integral part of her life in Aspen.
A memorial service will be held in Aspen in late August, and donation information will be announced shortly.
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