I got the sad news last Friday from her sister that Patty Looper died on Thanksgiving. She’d been missing for over two weeks when we finally learned that Patty had been taken by paramedics to the St. John’s hospital just before Thanksgiving but was, for some reason, not admitted. We reasoned then that Patty, who has been the main subject of a documentary I’ve been working on for three years, had either 1) been admitted to an alcohol rehabilitation clinic in Tulsa, 2) had hit the road or the rails with some new drinking companion—probably a man—who was taking care of her, or 3) had ended up dying in a remote location.
So, the news last Friday was…I don’t know if it makes sense…shocking and yet, not surprising. There will be no funeral, as the family cannot afford one, but there may be a memorial some time early next year. Those readers of this blog know that I’m giving minimal information on the story partly because I’m no longer using the blog as a funding tool, and also because I think it’ll be better for you to see the story on the screen.
Patty could easily fall under the category of “lost soul,” but she also had a sense of humor and mischief, a generosity in the absence of resources, and a survival instinct that bouyed her through a thousand depredations, self-imposed and otherwise, until some unnamable and incomprehensible affliction within her—finally took her.
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