In Memoriam -- Patrick J. Fitch ("Monk") (T-9)
Chicago Tribune, 1/29, 2016:
“Patrick Joseph Fitch, 74, died January 17, 2016 in
Istanbul, Turkey. He is survived by his loving wife Ayten, his son Enver
(Katie) and granddaughter Abigal; 5 sisters and 4 brothers and many nieces
and nephews. He was a former resident of River Forest, Illinois before
traveling to Istanbul for his work with the Peace Corps. He met his loving
wife of over 30 years in Istanbul and there he made a home. Patrick often
travelled back to Illinois and Washington to visit with family and friends.
He was laid to rest in Turkey.”
Patrick J. “Monk”
Fitch passed away recently in Istanbul, Turkey, where he was buried. His
Wife, Ayten and son, Enver were present as well as his brother, Michael who
shared some impressions of his funeral and burial: “It was an unusual
ceremony, had to be in a Catholic Church and a Catholic cemetery since he
could not be buried in the common Muslim way, though we tried to do that.
Strange To have a Catholic priest, from Africa, praying in Turkish, with
Catholic prayers, to a Muslim audience. Also a singing nun. It was all
unusual but ok. Pat had all the Razak family and many friends, about 60
attending. I and all miss him. Ayten is very weak but ok. Michael”
Michael has shared
of the funeral and burial. Michael requests that photos of Pat be
shared with him. Michael’s daughter is a film-maker and is preparing a
slide show honoring Pat which he will share with us. Michael’s email is,
firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, please share photos with Sandy Anderson for
the Arkadaşlar website (TurkeyDost@aol.com
Pat served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in T-9 from 1965 to
1967. He entered training in Portland, Oregon and completed training at
Middle East Technical University, Ankara, Turkey. Here are some comments by
the members of Peace Corps who knew Pat and served with him as members of
Dan Leahy, T-9: Monk always wanted me to go to mass with
him when we were all living in Yalincak. I really like him. A good guy.
Ephraim Frankel, T-9: Thanks for this difficult sad note.
Pat was, and will always be, a good, fine guy, just like Dan said.
Mike Basile, T-9: I got to see him about 10 or so years
ago when I was visiting on behalf of my university. He was then as I
remember him in Yalincak, full of energy, fun, optimism.
Robert Staab, T-9: When Sylva and I went back in 74-75, we
lived in Istanbul, where we saw Monk , Ayten, and their son Menderes quite
a bit. The best memory was my son, Peter, blond and blue eyed, and
Menderes wrestling in our small bahçe. That , of course, and having
another bottle of Efes birası with Monk. Later I tried many times to find
him, always failed. Great guy, father, and husband. He will be missed.
·Ken Hill,T-9: Our sincere
condolences to Pat’s families!! We’ll miss ‘Monk’!
·Tom Turner, T-9: Wonderful guy.
Sandy Pfunder, T-9: Clarence Falk and his wife, Molly
Ehrlinger, were both Turkey 9 volunteers, who married after our stint in
Turkey was completed. In the summer of 2007, Anatolian Artisans organized
a tour of Capadocia and Konya, and Clarence (and I) were on that tour.
After we arrived back in Istanbul at the end of our tour, Monk and Ayten
met us in Istanbul and Monk spent a day with Clarence and me. Hence the
picture of Clarence and Monk below (which I took).