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Music 04


Patricia (Thomsen) Pinkston

June 11, 1935 ~ April 11, 2018 (age 82)

Patricia Thomsen Pinkston, wife, mother, grandmother, teacher, musician, and friend, passed away quietly and peacefully on April 11, 2017.

Patie was born in Salt Lake City, on June 11, 1935, the youngest child of LeRoy Alma Thomsen and Vera Eddington Thomsen.  Six months later, the family moved to Los Angeles, California, where she grew up.

When Patie was only 7-years-old, she was introduced to the cello.  That introduction began a life-long love of music and teaching. Patie began taking private lessons and practicing hours a day.  When she was only 12, she was accepted into the prestigious Peter Merenbloom Orchestra—a training ground for many professional musicians.  But the orchestra rehearsed out in the San Fernando Valley—many miles from where she lived.  And she was too young to drive.  But her love of music and of playing the cello was so strong, that was just a minor obstacle.  So every Saturday morning, she would get up early, and, with her big cello in tow, she would hop on the bus and ride out to rehearsal.  She would rehearse for four hours, then ride the bus home again! 

At 14, Patie began teaching private cello lessons after school, accumulating her own group of students—and accumulating her own income.  She continued to teach through high school and college and even after she began working full time.  In fact, even after she retired from the school district, she never really retired from private teaching.  This year marked her 68th year of private teaching.  In fact, most of her students had lessons scheduled for this week! 

Patie has had hundreds of private students over the years, and she has loved them all.  Many have gone on to play in college and even professionally. 

With her friend Miltona Moore, she authored several stringed-instrument method books, like “Champion Strings” and “Finger Trips for Cello”.  She has been active for many years in the Suzuki Music Association, on the state, national, and international levels, and she has won numerous awards and recognition, including California Music Educator of the year, in 1996. 

Patie played in a number of orchestras throughout her life.  She was in the touring orchestra at BYU.  She then played in the Utah Symphony.  Most recently, she was one of the original members of the Orchestra at Temple Square.  Belonging to that orchestra—with its friendships and opportunities--was a highlight of Patie’s musical career and a great blessing for her and her husband, Alan.  In fact, it was a blessing for the whole family to attend those performances.

Speaking of Alan, the only thing that could possibly compete with music for Patie’s attention, was her sweetheart Alan.  They met in Primary when they were five years old, and they have been inseparable ever since!  They married on October 30, 1958, in the Los Angeles Temple. Alan was the love of her life, and the two of them set an example for all of us of how to love and support your spouse.  Alan was practically a member of the Orchestra at Temple Square himself, driving her to rehearsals, sitting through rehearsals in the Conference Center, always carrying her cello, going with her on tour, etc.  They were wonderful to each other.  Frankly, it is amazing that Patie waited this long to re-join him!

Patie and Alan graduated from Dorsey High, in Los Angeles, in 1953.  While Alan was on his mission, Patie attended Whittier College and BYU.  When he returned, they both earned their bachelor’s degrees and then earned their master’s degrees from Cal State L.A.  Patie taught music and conducted the orchestras in several elementary schools in the Los Angeles and Glendale School Districts, for almost 40 years.  For several years, she worked directly for the Glendale School District, supervising all music programs, from kindergarten through 12th grade.

Alan and Patie moved to La Crescenta, California, in 1974 where they raised their two sons (Paul and David) for 25 years. They loved their La Crescenta neighbors and friends. In 1999, after retiring, they moved to Provo and into the wonderful Grandview 10th Ward.  Patie immediately set up a cello studio in their new home and cultivated a whole new group of cello students.

We would like to acknowledge and thank Dr. Gary Garner and his team for their attention, kindness and care while Mom was in the hospital.

Patie is survived by her brother, Lynn Thomsen; sons, Paul and David (Katherine); grandchildren, Sydney (Parker), Allyson (Dallin), Kyle, Scott and Brigham; and great-grandchildren, Jack, Holly and McKay.

We will miss Grandma, but we are so grateful that she is reunited with her beloved husband, as well as her parents, her sister Roanne, and her grandson Chad. 

Funeral services will be held Monday, April 16, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. in the Grandview Stake Center, 1600 N. 1880 W., Provo, Utah. Friends may call at the church that day, from 9:00 -10:45 a.m. Interment will be in Orem City Cemetery. Condolences may be expressed at 

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