Patricia Adair, of Rolla, was named Senior Companion of the Month for September.
Adair has been a Senior Companion for 10 years. She has three children, three grandchildren; she has three brothers and one sister. Adair loves music and took violin lessons but she learned to play the piano by ear and has played over 65 years in churches. She also enjoys reading, games, resale shops, fishing and hiking.
Adair was a pastor’s wife and in the ministry for 18 years while she raised three children. She spent 25 years working in factories making corn cob pipes, appliances, and generators; then spent 14 years of service at Rayle Cafeteria at UMR S&T.
Adair has always had a desire to work in the ministry and left home in 1963 to attend Central Bible College in Springfield. She graduated in 1967 with a bachelor’s in religious education with a minor in missions.
Adair was called to go to isolated parts of Alaska to establish new churches. Travelers and goods coming in and out had to go by plane or boat.
“My first mission was in a borough of Juneau working in abused children’s homes. A year and a half later, I moved to a village in Nome, Alaska on the Bering Sea a 100 miles from Russia. I taught Head Start and worked in a boarding home where high schoolers came to get their education,” she says.
“I also went to Barrow, Alaska, which is above the Arctic Circle very close to the North Pole. At certain times of the year there, the sun never sets, and other times when it never rises above the horizon. The sun sets on Nov. 18 or 19, and remains below the horizon for about 65 days until the end of January. Overall, I spent six years doing mission work in Alaska,” she says.
“I have a deep sense of love for people” she says. “I’ve worked with all types of people, age groups and nationalities and have had some great friendships. But you don’t have to travel to have a mission to help people. I do it right here in Rolla through the Senior Companion Program. I found my motto for life on a boutique shop. ‘Do small things with great love.’”
As Senior Companion of the Month, Adair received a floral arrangement donated from Blossom Basket Florist and a free $10 car wash from Cowtown USA.
The Senior Companion Program is sponsored by the Phelps County Commission, funded by a grant from the Corporation for National and Community Service as well as several local groups and individuals.
If you know a Phelps County resident who might benefit from the services of a Senior Companion, or someone who is 55 or older who would like to become a Senior Companion, call 573-458-6180 for further information.