Patricia A. Norton

PORTAGE – Patricia A. Norton, age 90, of Portage passed away peacefully with family by her side on Thursday, February 2, 2017, at Tivoli in Portage where she had resided the past eight months.

Patricia’s focus in life was always faith, family and friends. Her faith in God was all-encompassing and never faltered, even with all the trials and tribulations she experienced in her life. She was truly a shining example to all who knew and loved her. She was a member of St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church and was always extremely proud of her Irish heritage. She was employed as a secretary at Badger Ordnance in Baraboo for many years but when was advised they were going to put in computers, she knew it was time to retire! She was always happiest when surrounded by her family and enjoyed the simple pleasures in life.

Patricia was born on July 19, 1926, in Portage to Ruth (Schwantz) and Clifford McDermott on July 19, 1926, one of four beautiful McDermott girls. She married Robert J. Hanger of Rio at St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception Church in Portage, and their marriage was blessed with five children whom they raised in the Baraboo area. Unfortunately, Robert tragically preceded her in death in 1981. In 1983, she married John Norton and together they traveled extensively, which she loved, but was always glad to get home to her family. They enjoyed their lives together until John’s death in May of 1990.

A few years later, as she was walking into K-Mart, a gentleman opened the door for her and thus began a relationship of many years with Joe Szabo. Patricia always said to keep an open mind and talk to people while waiting in line as “you just never know” when a chance encounter may change your life. Joe was “adopted” into her family and was loved by all until his passing in 2001.

She is survived by two children, Mary (Bill) Hendrickson of Oxford and Mark (Cindy) Hanger of Montgomery, AL. She is further survived by her grandchildren, Kara (Chris) Panayiotou of Chesapeake, VA, Kimberly Knoll of Beaver Dam, Lacey Hanger-Bennett, Chad Hanger, Chase Hanger, Valerie Ranum, Jaime Ranum, Lisa Tatzel-Conway and Julie Tatzel.

Grandma Pat is also survived by her great-granddaughter, Victoria Hendrickson of Oxford, and her great-great-grandson, Tucker. Victoria was the light of her great-grandma’s life and their relationship was truly special. Tucker completed five generations for her family and we are blessed.

She is further survived by her sister, Ruth Mary (Russell) Watling of Rothschild; 11 great-grandchildren, including Bryce Knoll of Portage. She is also survived by step-grandson Michael Skelton, step-great-granddaughter, Tessa Skelton and many nieces, nephews and friends.

Patricia was preceded in death by three children, Denise (Hanger) Tatzel, Robert Jr., and Patricia Ranum-Markley, and very special grandson Derek Ranum. She was able to survive these tragedies because of her faith in God and her knowledge that one day they would all be together again.

She was also preceded in death by her sisters, Donna McDermott-Wendt and Joan McDermott-Bandt.

Private graveside services will be held at St. Michael Cemetery in Baraboo on February 4, 2017, with Pflanz Mantey Mendrala Funeral Home assisting the family, and will hold a gathering at a later date to celebrate her life.

We would like to thank Tivoli and all involved with her care while she was there. Patricia and her family could not have asked for a better place during her last days. She felt your love, compassion and caring, as did her family. Also, many thanks to family and friends that visited with her and loved her. She was truly one of a kind and there will never be another.

We will miss you forever but know you are at peace and reunited with so many that were waiting for you. You lived a truly good life and taught us so much.


For information please call 608 742-2126 (Portage, WI) or 608 635-2763 (Poynette, WI)