Obituary of Patricia Ann Benz
Patricia Ann French was born February 1, 1942, in Monroe, Michigan. She was one of six children born from the union of Melvin and Lola (Cairl) French. Patricia gained an education through the Monroe School system, but it was not until she was in her forties that she obtained her GED. Later in life, Patricia would become lovingly known as Maddy.
One of Maddy’s favorite pastimes was gathering with her two sisters and niece to play BINGO, a game that brought laughter and excitement to their lives. With a stroke of luck, Maddy had her fair share of thrilling wins, celebrating those fantastic jackpots that brought a sparkle to her eyes.
A true hostess at heart, Maddy loved nothing more than organizing cookouts at her home, where friends and family would come together to enjoy her delicious homemade macaroni salad and baked beans. Unfortunately, after the untimely passing of her husband, these gatherings became less frequent.
Maddy’s love for camping knew no bounds and she possessed a spirit of adventure. Whether it was the picturesque forests of Michigan, or the breathtaking wonders found in other corners of the world, Maddy had a special talent for turning any camping trip into a memorable adventure.
But it was on the shores of Lake Erie that Maddy’s heart felt most at home. Fishing became her passion, especially when her husband Bill acquired a boat that the family fondly referred to as the "Metal Barge Party Boat." This vessel became their sanctuary for laughter, camaraderie, and unforgettable fishing experiences.
It is worth mentioning that Maddy was not without her moments of difficulty, but behind that tempered exterior was a heart of gold. She possessed an unwavering honesty that defined her character, and if you were lucky enough to cross paths with her, she would selflessly give you the shirt off her back.
Patricia “Maddy” Benz, age 81, of Erie, Michigan passed away at ProMedica Monroe Regional Hospital at 11:24pm on Thursday June 29, 2023. In addition to her passing, she is preceded by her parents, two sisters: Kathleen Collins, Carol Jean French; one brother: Frank French; two sisters in law: Terri French and Terry French.
Left to cherish her memory, she leaves her sister: Ina (Steve) Sanders, one brother: Melvin French, one brother-in-law: Lloyd Collins; three children she gave birth to; her multiple grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews she was fond of and treated as her own.
Friends may gather on Monday July 10, 2023, from 12:00pm until 2:00pm at Merkle Funeral Service, Erie; 9156 Summit Street, Erie, Michigan 48133 (734) 317-7199. A celebration of Her life, led by Pastor Cheryl Tucker of CountrySide Wesleyan Church, Temperance, will take place at 2:00pm, also at Merkle’s. A procession will immediately follow to Roselawn Memorial Park Cemetery for interment.
Online guests may visit www.merklefs.com to leave words of inspiration and comfort or to share a photo.