Pat K. Cargnoni, age 87, passed away peacefully on Monday, December 10, 2018 at Heritage Manor in Staunton. After a series of strokes in September 2016, she spent the last two years under the gentle care of the Heritage Manor staff.
She was born Pat Toma on October 27th, 1931 in Pahala, Hawaii to Kame and Ushi Toma. Her childhood was spent on the big island of Hawaii where she graduated from Pahala High School and the local community college. While working for the Army Civilian Corps in Japan, she met Bob Cargnoni and they were married on March 13, 1956. After time spent in Champaign and Chicago, they moved to Staunton in 1963. Over the years Pat worked numerous bookkeeping jobs, but her primary focus was caring for her family. Part of her heart always remained in Hawaii and she always looked forward to re-connecting with the extended Toma family during her frequent visits back to the islands.
Pat was a loving wife, mother, mother-in-law, grandmother, great-grandmother, sister, “auntie”, sister-in-law, neighbor and friend. She loved new adventures, but also marveled at the simple things in life like the flowers and birds in her backyard, drives in the country and an afternoon cup of coffee with a cookie.
For anyone not fortunate enough to meet Pat, here are some memories her family will always cherish. She ate toast without butter and salad without dressing. She ate like a bird, but always had snacks in her purse for everyone. Her recipes are some of the grandkids’ favorites; Swedish meatballs and Christmas cookies to name a couple. She loved to watch samurai movies, old TV shows, old movies. If you were lucky, you might get her to teach you some hula dance moves. Her favorite song was Nat King Cole’s “Unforgettable”. She loved her crossword puzzlesand playing Scrabble. She made beautiful quilts. She loved all-day coffee and the occasional Pina Colada. She completed her many chores with a smile on her face while singing along to all the background songs. She loved caring for her plants. She always stayed busy including near-constant leg exercises while sitting. She didn’t like to have her picture taken. She was not comfortable showing her emotions and if she told you she loved you she pulled you aside first like it was your special secret. When departing, you were not supposed to say “goodbye”; preferences were “see you later”, “Aloha”, or a shaka (hang loose) sign. She was always up for a new experience and would just jump up on a trampoline, hop on the back of a motorcycle or push off on a skateboard. If you crossed her, you were going to get a toe-pinch or a dishtowel-swat. She was surprisingly funny; sometimes it was intentional; oftentimes because her mannerisms were so adorable. People loved to make her laugh. You just wanted to be around her because life seemed happier in her presence.
The special memories aside, she lived an exemplary life of kindness and gentleness, and had a simple, soft-spoken grace to her. She was truly loved by all who knew her.
She was preceded in death by her parents; brothers George, Richard, Kenneth, Masa, Mike and beloved sisters Kay and Yoshiko.
She is survived by her brothers Jerry and Paul; her devoted husband of 62 years, Bob; daughters Karen & Sharon; sons-in-law Larry & Jim; son Bob; daughter-in-law Corinne; grandchildren Jared, Katie (husband James), Sam, Mitchell, Nathan & Hallie and great-granddaughter Murphy.
The family would like to thank the caregivers at Heritage Manor. There will not be a memorial service so any remembrance can be a donation to the Good Samaritan House of Granite City or the Heritage Community Band of Staunton.
Aloha, Pat - we will all see you later!
Good Samaritan House of Granite City
Granite City IL
Heritage Community Band of Staunton
Staunton IL 62088