Patricia Mae Weeks Arnold, 86, completed her life’s performance on February 28th, 2023. Pat was a native of Lake City, born October 3rd, 1936, the daughter of Frank and Mae Longworth Weeks. She graduated from Columbia High School in 1954.
Pat attended college at Florida State University and graduated in 1957. She performed in the FSU Flying High Circus, where she met her late husband, Jim Arnold. After graduation, Pat taught a year in Perry, Florida and as well as a year in Bainbridge, Georgia. She then returned to Lake City, where she taught at the Lake City Junior High School and Niblack Sixth Grade Center for 33-and-a-half years.
At Lake City Junior High, Pat and Mary Ellen Bolton developed a circus-themed performance for a school assembly in 1969. The performance led them to establish BARD, which stands for baton, acrobatics, rhythm, and drill. Once Mary Ellen left, Pat narrowed Bard’s focus to gymnastics. After using the Lake City Junior High auditorium and Teen Town, Pat built a gym on Nash Road, which continues to this day under her daughter, Denise A. Kirby. Pat and her family were active participants in the Columbia County 4-H and one of the founding members of the Seminole Booster Club in 1976.
Pat is survived by her sister, Carole Curtis and her husband Fred; son, James “Packy” Arnold and his partner Holly; daughter, Denise Kirby and her husband Tim; grandson, Miles Kirby and his wife Traci; and granddaughters, Eva Kirby and Emily Arnold.
A funeral service for Mrs. Arnold will be conducted on Saturday, March 11, 2023 at 2:00 P.M. in the Gateway-Forest Lawn Memorial Chapel with Rev. Kevin Hall officiating. Interment will follow in the Forest Lawn Memorial Gardens Cemetery. The family will receive friends for a time of visitation beginning at 12:00 Noon prior to the service at the funeral home.
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