Dorothy (Bradley) Patterson, 91, of Orange Park, FL went home to be with the Lord on November 13, 2022. She was born in Florida when her parents (who were sharecropper farmers) went to Avon Park to work temporarily at the orange juice plant. Dorothy was raised in the rural community of Wilsonville of Coffee County, Georgia and graduated from Nicholls High School. At the age of 16 she moved to Jacksonville Florida with a few of her cousins; and worked as a nanny while attending Massey Business College. Later, Dorothy worked as a secretary for George C. Aucher Company. She married Ray Bradley at the age of 21 and has two children, Beverly and Tony. Dorothy and her family became residents of the quaint town of Orange Park in 1961 where her husband Ray owned a barber shop on Park Avenue.
She like many married women in the 60’s became involved in local church, school, and civic organizations to make their communities better places to live. Dorothy was an active member of the Orange Park Elementary School’s Parent Teacher Association, The First Baptist Church of Orange Park and a few civic organizations. The Lions Club of Orange Park has been an active organization in Orange Park for many years and she served as President to the Lionellas in the ‘60s. Dorothy became a Girl Scout leader in 1963 until 1973. It is believed almost every girl in Orange Park had her as their leader at one time or another during those years. Dorothy organized and led many camping trips and summer camp craft classes at Camp Chowenwaw (in Clay County). She served as the Cookie Chairman for the Gateway Council for a few years and helped to raise many funds for the local Girl Scouts.
Dorothy has been an active member of the Garden Club of Orange Park for many years, and she served as President of the Hummingbird Circle of the Garden Club of Orange Park. She was also an active member of the Historical Society of Orange Park not long after it was founded and served as its President for a few terms receiving the Earl Harrington Award for her years of community service and was one of the founding members of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR), Sophia Fleming Chapter.
During her years in Orange Park, she worked at home as a seamstress. Dorothy later worked for more than 20 years as a teacher at the Florida Junior College teaching basic sewing construction, swimwear, men’s wear, fabric crafts, and quilting. She continued to sew until 88 years of age usually quilt making.
Dorothy cherished her family and will be deeply missed by all who knew and loved her. She is preceded by her husband, Ray Bradley; husband of 17 years, Hershel “Pat” Patterson; parents, Arthur and Lillian (Smith) Harper; brother, Carl Harper; sister, Doris Turner and son-in-law Richard Valliere, who prior to his passing in 2018, cared for her and Pat for a number of their later years. Dorothy is survived by her children, Beverly Valliere and Tony Bradley (Carla); grandson, Jeffery Bradley (Jennifer); sister-in-law, Yvonne Harper (wife of Carl) and brother-in-law, Art Turner (husband of Doris); several nieces and nephews and a host of extended family and friends.
Funeral services will be held at 11:00am, Monday, November 21, 2022 in the Jacksonville Memory Gardens Chapel with Rev. Steve Valliere, Pastoral Care Minister of Tru Life Church of Fleming Island officiating. The family will receive friends from 10:00am until service time. A graveside service will be held at 1:00pm, Tuesday, November 22, 2022 in Roxie Mae Cemetery in Nicholls, GA.
The family request in lieu of flowers, donations be made to a local homeless mission in Dorothy’s honor.