Cover photo for Patricia "Patsy" Peterson Lawson's Obituary
Patricia "Patsy" Peterson Lawson Profile Photo
1939 Patricia 2023

Patricia "Patsy" Peterson Lawson

February 14, 1939 — August 3, 2023

Patricia "Patsy" Peterson Lawson

Patricia “Patsy” Peterson Lawson, age 84 years, a deeply loved and admired mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and devoted wife, passed away on August 3, 2023 in Fort Pierce, Florida.

Patsy was born on Valentines Day, February 14th, 1939 in Camden, Arkansas and raised by her mother and father, Nell Poland Peterson and James Denman Peterson, Jr. in Marks, Mississippi. She graduated from Marks High School with honors and participated as a debutante in the Mississippi Delta debutante program that year. Patsy went on to study at Holton-Arms Junior College in Washington, DC her freshman year, following which she enrolled at the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss) her sophomore year, where she was a member of Chi Omega Sorority. She graduated with a BA Degree in English. After graduation, she became an English teacher in Memphis, Tennessee.

In 1962, Patsy wed attorney Ralph Ivy Lawson at Marks, Mississippi Baptist Church, going on to have two children, Nell Ivy Prince of Lakewood Ranch, Florida and Rush Denman Lawson of Fort Pierce, Florida. Ralph and Patsy’s loving marriage endured for over 62 years at their home in Dyersburg, Tennessee and later in Fort Pierce, Florida. Many loving friendships were maintained over the years in Dyersburg.

Patsy is survived by her husband Ralph Lawson and her children Nell Ivy Prince and Rush Lawson. She also leaves six adoring grandchildren, Ivy Prince Watt, Alison Prince, George Lawson Prince, and Colin Prince, all of New York, New York, Kathryn Prince of Lakewood Ranch, Florida,  Alexander Lawson of Austin, Texas, and a great-granddaughter, Lily Watt of New York, New York. Patsy is also survived by her brother Denny Peterson of Lewisville, Arkansas and sisters Harriet Rooks of Starkville, Mississippi and Keturah Williams of Madison, Mississippi.

When Patsy had her children, she dedicated her life to being a fantastic and wonderful mother. Patsy excelled at raising her children and supporting them through their lives. She made it her mission to improve the lives of others, and participated in many charitable organizations in Dyersburg, Tennessee including the American Cancer Society where she served as local chapter president and state volunteer of the year. She also served many years on the First Presbyterian Church Women’s Committee as it’s chairman. She was a member of St. Andrews Episcopal Church in Fort Pierce, Florida.

Patsy was a passionate horticulturalist and cook, and when she wasn’t filling her home with warmth and kindness, she could be found in her garden tending to her beloved colorful English roses or in the kitchen preparing meals for her family or others in need. She would continually share her fresh rose arrangements and delicious meals with those in need, including cancer patients, churches and friends. She was also a first-rate bridge player and recently enjoyed her time playing cards with friends at the Pelican Yacht Club on Hutchinson Island.

Patsy spent a lifetime serving others as hospitality was her gift. She was a beautiful quintessential Southern lady, and we will miss her greatly.

The family requests that memorials be sent St. Jude Children’s Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee in lieu of flowers. There will be a memorial/celebration of life at a later date followed by burial at the Marks, Mississippi Cemetery.


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